Minoru Centre for Active Living

  • Location

    Richmond, BC

Located in the historic green heart of Richmond’s city centre, the Minoru Centre for Active Living replaces three existing facilities and represents the next step in the area’s evolution and a legacy for Richmond residents. The iconic, destination facility will act as a gateway to the 105-year-old Minoru Park and supports active living and wellness for all ages. It includes an aquatic centre focused on health and therapy, older adult community centre, fitness centre, athletic team rooms, event spaces, and an outdoor community plaza.

While the area is already home to a range of community facilities and amenities, the Minoru Centre for Active Living aims to be the hub of Richmond’s recreational, social, and cultural life.

Design Challenge

The Centre plays a pivotal urban role in shaping and bookending the Granville Avenue civic precinct, reconnecting this key street to city’s green heart; Minoru Park. The public realm design reaffirms the park’s role as a valuable public amenity, capable of hosting major cultural events, intimate family gatherings, boisterous athletic competitions, and bustling farmers’ markets. This rich public experience supports a diverse and socially-sustainable community.


Design Response

Made up of three main components — a 6,410 m² health-focused aquatic centre, a community centre for seniors, and a sports field — this iconic, destination facility on Canada’s West Coast represents a new integrated community centre model. It will support users of all ages and diverse cultural backgrounds, with the goal of mirroring the city’s own vibrant, active community and promoting lifelong learning, health, and social connection.

The Centre’s flowing roof structure and site circulation patterns reference the natural history of Richmond as a river delta city. Diverse program elements are unified by a continuous hybrid wood and steel roof structure; it flows out into the site along the building’s east façade and colonnade in a gesture of openness and welcome, redefining the site circulation, drawing patrons deep into the heart of the park, and creating a clear identity.

Driven by its geotechnical response, the terraced pool design allows for innovation where the infinity pool edge is exposed at the sloped deck areas. The infinity edge acts as a resting spot, transfer point, and bench for patrons who need a little more time or assistance getting into the pools. By allowing the option for individuals to transfer out of chairs into the water, the design extends the range of abilities that can access the pools with dignity.

Minoru Centre for Active Living is a place where a diverse and intergenerational community can mix and inter-relate, supporting wellness for everyone.

Design Process