DMACC Trail Point Aquatics & Wellness Center

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Project Type


Ankeny, Iowa

Year Completed


Des Moines Area Community College (DMACC) – Student Activities Center
7,145 sq. ft. of water surface area

As part of a renovation project, Waters Edge worked with DMACC representatives as well as the building architect, to develop an aquatic facility for the new student recreation center. Programming for the facility was a strong element for consideration during the design process. The final project includes areas for both competition and recreation that focus on maximizing space as well as program elements. With plans to integrate academic programs into the facility such as early-childhood management to sport and physical therapy management. The facility is also used as a way of enriching students college experiences, while also providing a wellness benefit to the community.

With a strong swim team presence in the area, the competitive pool hosts 8, 25-yard lanes as well as easy access stair entry and 1 meter diving. Bleachers are permanently fixed to the pool deck to allow for spectator seating during practice as well as swim meets. Nearby and separated from the competitive space with a glazed curtain wall is the recreational pool. This pool has a zero-depth entry ramp, versus a traditional full zero depth entry, to maximize deck space as well as provide deeper water for wellness aerobics and open swim. Complete with floatables, a basketball goal, volleyball net and two lap lanes; the rec pool can be open for public use during swim meets/practice, as well as be used as a warm-up cool down area for competitive events. Aside from allowing flexibility of use, the glazed curtain wall also provides integrated solar energy savings measures, and the ability to manage the air and water temperature of both spaces more efficiently. In an effort to continue to make indoor pool designs sustainable the heat from the building HVAC is reclaimed and utilized to heat the pools. Supplemental to the reclaimed heat, high efficiency heaters help provide any additional support only as needed.

In addition to the main pool areas, a smaller therapy/wellness pool was provided with ADA access, an underwater treadmill and swim current jets to name a few features. Being a more intimate space, this pool is utilized for more specific physical therapy and wellness needs.

Featured in Athletic Business – 31st Architectural Showcase

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