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Virginia Tech previews Indoor Athletic Training Facility

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) previewed its newly completed Indoor Athletic Training Facility (IATF) on August 15. Media and guests took a first look at the USD$18m, 92,000sqft building – the latest addition to Virginia Tech’s sports facilities.

Fred Ortiz, Associate Principal with HKS Sports & Entertainment Group and the lead designer on the project, said:

Former Virginia Tech Athletic Director Jim Weaver was the champion of the project and Hokie Football Coach Frank Beamer inspired the design for the IATF.

Ortiz also explained at the Saturday event:

During a speech to the Richmond Hokie Club, Beamer made a connection to the university’s core values – inscribed on the pylons at Memorial Court above the War Memorial Chapel – as a device intended to motivate and inspire the football team. At team meals and before and after practice, the team would recite the following: Brotherhood, Leadership, Loyalty, Ut Prosim, Service, Sacrifice, Honour and Duty.

Pylons with the values are primary supports for IATF’s large barrel-vaulted roof, and serve as a daily reminder to student athletes as to why they are here and their role in the community.

Ortiz commented:

This large training facility had to fit, not only its immediate context, but also with the collegiate gothic-style buildings on campus.

Neighbours, the Cassell Coliseum and Merryman Center, inspire the barrel-vaulted roof form, and column support details mimic Lane Stadium.

Functional requirements for the facility included over 200,000sqft (210ft x 400ft) of flexible training space, appropriate run-off clearances and padded walls for safety, 85ft high clearance to accommodate special teams practice, high bay sports lighting and platforms at 20ft and 60ft heights allow for coaching and videographers to work both inside and out. Six garage doors allow a larger training area and ease of access, and a large translucent wall provides ambient light, minimising the use of power to illuminate the space.

Ortiz added:

To give you an idea of the scale of this facility, the White House can actually fit within this huge volume.

The entire design-build team, including partners at W. M. Jordan Company, are quite proud of this accomplishment.


About HKS

The HKS Sports & Entertainment Group, ranked as one of the top sports and entertainment designers by BD World Architecture, has ushered in a new generation of multi-revenue-generating, world-class facilities. The group’s portfolio includes Minnesota Multipurpose Stadium, Cowboys Stadium, Lucas Oil Stadium, U.S. Naval Academy Wesley Brown Fieldhouse and Virginia Military Institute Corp Physical Training Facility. These venues are known for enhancing and leveraging team brand, delivering an enhanced fan experience, and serving as destination environments. HKS is ranked among the top six architectural engineering firms, according to Building Design+Construction magazine, and operates from 27 offices. For more information, visit: