Providing a multi-use sports venue for the community of Fort McMurray
The City of Fort McMurray is largely considered as a northern hub for oil sands work—but everyone needs their fair share of play. Days can feel long in Fort McMurray, particularly in the summer. So, when the community was brainstorming ways to capitalize on sunshine and promote physical, psychological, and emotional well-being amongst residents, they looked to us to design an all-inclusive, multi-functional sporting venue on MacDonald Island to complement their existing leisure center.
Our team, in collaboration with HOK, started by gauging public opinion to understand the community’s vision for Shell Place. We worked closely with local officials to reflect the intended function while ensuring sustainability and targeting LEED Gold standards. The complex includes a conference facility, a banquet hall, community group support areas, a field house, and court space.
But most importantly, we developed a multi-use performance field capable of hosting 20,000 fans. Using artificial turf, the field has accommodated sports teams like the Edmonton Eskimos and Edmonton FC, as well as bands like Aerosmith—events that don’t typically (or ever!) take place in Fort McMurray.
Created for year-round use, our design complements and celebrates the Winter City. The building’s form effectively integrates with the existing Suncor Community Leisure Centre while separating itself as an iconic architectural piece of MacDonald Island.
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