Enlivens and strengthens the public realm
Kennedy FitzGerald Architects for Newry, Mourne and Down District Council
Contract value: Confidential
GIA: 5,660 m²
Situated near the centre of Newry, this leisure centre, which is phase 2 of the overall scheme, rationalises the council’s sporting facilities into one ‘hub’, adding two large sports halls, squash and handball courts, a café, spin studio, various fitness spaces and a trampoline pit to the largely wet facilities housed in the first phase.
The newer building has a different language to the old one and is clad in a white machine-cut brick over a dark brick base, thus helping to reduce the combined scale of the two buildings. The judges felt that the workmanship on the building is exemplary. The vigorous modelling of what could have been a bland functional block gives this structure great civic presence, sending out a clear message of the importance of health and fitness in our lives. It enlivens and strengthens the public realm and has the potential to increase footfall.