Friday completed a feasibility study exploring possibilities to renovate the historic Armory building located on Drexel’s Main Campus to increase its usable recreation spaces. After the highly successful and frequently used renovation of the existing Recreation Center in 2010 Drexel has acknowledged the need for even more space to accommodate its active students’ needs. The Armory, located just across 33rd Street, provided not only the perfect location, but a large amount of existing space that is currently unused at its perimeter.
In this study, Friday has explored ways to maximize student activity space within the Armory, including accommodating the University’s rapidly expanding dance program while maintaining the integrity of the existing architecture. Shifting the existing tennis and basketball courts towards the rear of the building made way for large academic dance studios adjacent to the entrance that will be visible to passersby on 33rd Street. A grand entrance stair provides direct access to the extended mezzanine level which maximizes square footage and provides ample student space for both lounge and recreation.
Design of this project will also include the division of work into several phases. This allows for a smaller initial renovation that can increase the usable activity space and visually engage the campus while allowing for future development as Drexel’s need for recreation space continues to increase.