Text description provided by the architects. Outdoor Chattanooga is a division of the City of Chattanooga Parks & Recreation Department, aimed at promoting outdoor recreation as a signature lifestyle for the city of Chattanooga. In order to facilitate the organization's growth, a site near the Tennessee River was selected for it's central location to many of the city's outdoor amenities.
A vacant CMU block building located along the Tennessee River and adjacent to Coolidge Park, a popular outdoor destination, was selected as the site. The original block shell and concrete floor, along with the existing steel bar joists were salvaged and re-used. The new roof design takes cues from outdoor shelters and engages the old building to create a clerestory with wood trusses. This allows the space to be lit by daylight even on overcast days. The sloped roof collects rainwater in an internal gutter system that is moved to a cistern. This water is used for irrigation, flushing toilets and supplies the hose bibs for washing boats & bicycles. The flat roof is covered in a green-roof system that lowers the heat island effect and decreases the overall impervious area. The green-roof, ivy clad screen walls, and preserved lawn allows for more than 80% of the site to be covered by lush living material.
The central display area, conference room and classroom all have insulated glass garage doors that allow natural light in the winter or the flexibility to open up completely in the Spring and Fall for fresh air and events. These overhead doors allow employees to easily bring in outdoor gear & equipment- including boats and bikes. All windows have at least one operable portion to allow users access outside air. Recycled, renewable, and local materials were used throughout the project. The front desk is designed on casters so that it can be moved around the space to properly suit the event. The patchwork custom MDF panels are installed along the interior eastern wall. This design allows the users the flexibility to hang kayaks, canoes, bikes or a climbing wall. When one panel is damaged it can be easily replaced without disturbing the rest of the wall. The facility was designed with the goal of LEED Silver Certification.