Olivia is a passionate interior designer who takes pride in creating spaces that are functional, unique and provide an experience for all users. Her love for design and her involvement in the sporting community is what inspired her thesis project. Olivia’s focus was to create innovative design strategies aimed specifically at the needs of varsity student-athletes and provide an environment that improves their overall health and well-being while enhancing opportunities for collaboration between their peers.
The Locker Room is a student residence located at 21 Ossington Avenue, dedicated to Ryerson's varsity athletes, where students can live during their semester with their entire sports team. Not only is it a space for teams to live in but it is also a place for them to study, lounge, and collaborate with their peers. Anyone who is involved in the sporting community knows that a locker room is known as an athlete's safe space. Naming this facility after such an important aspect in the sports world further enhances the importance of this space.
The conceptual approach for The Locker Room utilizes the concept of “See And Be Seen.” With safety being such an important factor in student residence design, the study of sightlines was conducted in order to create both two and three-dimensional models. The conceptual direction incorporates overlapping angled lines while strategically limiting blind corners, utilizing glass partition walls, and creating open-concept plans. The overall design of the space is energized yet welcoming...the perfect combination for a varsity student-athletes home away from home.
The Locker Room floor plans were designed to encourage students to leave their dorms rooms and interact with their peers. Upon entry of the building, a security guard checkpoint is present in order to give students that extra sense of security on top of having key card access at all entries. Overall, The Locker Room contains various types of study zones including private, semi-private, and open workstations, and an abundance of social spaces such as a coffee and juice bar, lounge spaces, and a communal kitchen and event space where students can also participate in cooking and nutrition classes. There is also a small fitness room and yoga room in order to promote health and well-being to all athletes living here.
The second floor contains mostly suites, including one fully accessible suite. All dorm rooms in the suites have a large window to allow for an abundance of natural light. The Locker Room only contains suites for four and two students in order to avoid student isolation. There are also some additional social and workspaces located in the center of this floor along with a laundry room and an equipment storage room. The equipment storage room is strategically located by the elevator making it convenient for students to go straight to the second floor with their sports equipment into the equipment storage room.
Featured throughout The Locker Room are dynamic angled lines with neutral yet energized materials with pops of orange and yellow. Utilizing Ryerson’s branding colours and incorporating navy blue was necessary to tie in an important aspect of the University. Since the concept of The Locker Room involved an open concept plan, the acoustics were extremely important in areas such as the lounge, work zone, and second-floor hallway spaces. The use of fabrics, upholstery, and floor carpeting help to absorb sound travel.
In addition, sustainability was important when designing this space as it increases student health and happiness. Lastly, in terms of COVID-19, materials such as quartz, concrete, and microfiber fabrics were used as they are easy to wipe down and keep clean. Using easy-to-clean surfaces and fabrics will encourage students to keep their spaces neat and tidy. These materials can be seen throughout the section provided.
As a whole, The Locker Room allows varsity student-athletes to have a safe space to live, all while having access to various types of study zones, social spaces, collaborative environments, semi-private spaces, and private spaces. Having a variety of work and social zones are necessary for accommodating a group of students, as each individual has different study habits and social lives.
The varsity student-athletes of Ryerson University will have access to this unique student residence that incorporates innovative interior design strategies aimed specifically at their needs by providing an environment that improves their overall health and well-being and enhances the opportunity for collaboration between one another. The Locker Room is simply a home away from home where all students feel safe and welcome.