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HVAC System Options for Sports and Recreation Facilities

Large HVAC system.

HVAC Options for Recreation Facilities

Once you start getting into the details of planning a recreation facility, you may start to realize just how many of those details there are. Things that you would normally take for granted suddenly became vital parts of a project. This means you need to be armed with information. HVAC systems are one of these essential details. In this blog, Sports Facilities Advisory will go over some of the basic options and considerations for HVAC systems when designing a recreation facility or sports complex.

Air Conditioning

Even if your recreational facility is relatively small compared to others, it is still going to be big enough to need an extensive centralized air-conditioning system. Even in colder climates, indoor areas with a lot of activity are likely to generate heat. Most complexes utilize a central cooling station consisting of several large units. These centralized cooling stations are usually placed away from customer spaces to minimize noise. Locations such as the basement or roof are good choices.
While the air conditioning station is centralized, control is designed to be adapted across different zones throughout the facility. This way, varying temperature needs can be met for the different needs of your facility. For example, you can keep your Olympic swimming pool area at 78° while the weight room is kept at 72°. This ensures that your customers can enjoy a comfortable ambient temperature, whatever activity they are engaged in.


Heating systems function in the same way as centralized air conditioning. Modern heating systems are designed for high-efficiency so that heating large areas can be cost-effective and customizable. There are typically two options currently used for large facility heating systems: radiant heaters and hot air furnaces. A radiant heater uses infrared radiation to provide heat that is more focused, while a hot air furnace will burn fuel (such as natural gas) to heat the air and increase ambient temperature.

Defining Your HVAC Needs

There is a lot to think about when it comes to the kind of HVAC system your recreation facility should have. The conditioning and heating factors we have outlined above are just two examples of how the overall system works.
There are many factors to consider, such as the cost of using an electrical system vs. natural gas, whether the heating or cooling runs through duct systems or a water system, whether to use a dedicated ventilation system or to combine with your overall HVAC set-up. A professional group of experts like Sports Facility Advisory can help.

Contact the Sports Facilities Advisory Team Today

Choosing the right HVAC system is just one step in a long list of things you need to do when planning and developing a recreation facility. Don’t feel overwhelmed — contact Sports Facilities Advisory today. We have extensive experience in planning and developing facilities that have become the beating heart of their communities, and we can bring that experience to your project.

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