Aussies love their sports, which is why we have so many stadiums and sports complexes dotted around our towns and cities. Recent trends, however, are starting to make significant impacts to the design of these sports facilities.
One such trend is an increased demand for community sports complexes, as people become more health conscious. Another is the need for complexes that combine both sports and entertainment, as well as ensuring accommodations are in place suitable for gender-neutral players. Let’s take a look at some of these growing trends and how they may soon influence the way your sports complexes are designed.
Community sports facilities
Sports complexes will start to become more like community centres, designed to include facilities for multiple sports. So instead of separate locations for a bowling alley, basketball court or indoor cricket, they will all be together in one easily accessible complex. There’s also a drive to include a local library, day care centre and possibly even one or more cafes to encourage community connections, maximising the investment.
Increased flexibility in design
Sports complexes with multi-use and flexible spaces are another growing trend. These are designed to accommodate a range of sporting activities that are currently popular with the local community but can be changed or adapted to new sporting activities as needed. So as new sports become popular and others wane, the cost of these adaptions is minimal, maximising the use of these facilities.
Also known as unisex facilities, there’s a growing trend towards designing changing rooms that are gender-neutral for a variety of reasons. One of the biggest reasons is that these changing facilities promote diversity, creating an inclusive culture, a topic that has been gaining importance over the past few years. They also demonstrate that the council or investors of the complex value each individual’s personal identity and won’t tolerate biases based on gender. Whilst the design of unisex facilities may initially be more costly than previous designs, over time it will engender a more diverse and accepting community culture.
Expanding sports stadiums to include entertainment
Sports stadiums are massive structures costing millions of dollars to build but are often not utilised to their fullest potential. In fact, they are commonly completely empty, which has led to stadiums being used to host pop concerts or charity events. They could, however, be used to contribute so much more to the community, particularly since they already have existing parking and public transport facilities.
Therefore, we are starting to see sports stadiums that are now becoming the epicentre of entertainment, as they are the ideal location for both sports and recreation in one place. This is a trend that can apply to large urban centres just as easily as it can to small country towns, boosting local development and revitalising their communities. For smaller towns, this can be a way to increase the retention of young people, as well as encourage young families to move to the area.
Redesigning sports facilities into community meeting places or hubs is not only a great way to maximise the use of buildings that might lay idle for long periods, but it’s also a way to grow social capital in a community.
For more information on Polytan’s sports facility design and construction capabilities, call our Head Office on 1800 663 812 or send us an email enquiry.