The Forest County Potawatomi Community Center, which opened last fall, is a hub for cultural health.
Located in the 5,000-acre Forest County Potawatomi Reservation, the center provides a space for local residents to participate in events related to cultural education, recreation, athletic training, competitions and health.
The building’s design was influenced by the Forest County Potawatomi itself. The inspiration was embodied in everything from its two levels, which follow a natural grade in order to lessen any encroachment on nearby land, to the building’s basic floor plan, which takes its inspiration from the form of an eagle in flight. Its athletic venues have a 20,000-square-foot wood-court gym and a 20,000-square-foot fieldhouse. Its gym serves as a training and competition venue for court sports and has seating for as many as 1,500 people.
Its instructional and support spaces have a classroom, fabrication laboratory lab, woodshop, teaching kitchen, game room and pediatric therapy suite. A child-care suite provides parents with a venue for their kids while they participate in programs and activities.
The heart of the building has a two-story common space that serves as a center for community gatherings and powwows. An area for checking out outdoor equipment such as kayaks and snowshoes can reached from both inside and outside the building.
Greenfire Management Services was the general contractor.
“The center is a place where families can spend an entire day with countless options to fulfill each of their passions,” said Thomas Boelter, division director of education and culture for the Forest County Potawatomi. “The members feel at home while guests can learn about the Forest County Potawatomi people. In its completion, the center provides a large space where wellness can begin take place. We considered every individual, from infants to elders, in the development of this project making it a place for all to grow healthy together.”
Cost: Not disclosed
Start: March 2019
Completion: September 2021
Owner/Developer: Forest County Potawatomi Community
Architects: Ramlow/Stein Architects, RDG Planning & Design
Engineers: GRAEF Engineering, Oneida Total Integrated Enterprises, Thunderbird Engineering
Construction Manager: Greenfire Management Services
Submitting Company: Greenfire Management Services
Subcontractors: A Plus Warehouse Equipment & Supply, AkitaBox, Alpine Insulation, Astrea, Badger Scaffold, Badger Swimpools, Bell Structural Solutions, Beson & Houle, Block Iron & Supply, BluePrint Imaging Technologies, Camera Corner Connecting Point, CardConnect, Carrico Aquatic Resources, Carroll Seating, CCI Systems, Central Wisconsin Woodworking, Clean Power, Conner Forest Management, Corcoran Glass & Paint, CORE BTS, Crafts Inc., Daigle Brothers, Direct Management, Eldorado Climbing Walls, Essential Restoration, Final Touch Construction, First Technologies, Fortress Fence, Gillespie Productions, GRAEF USA, Graphic House, Hard Rock Sawing & Drilling, Heartland Business Systems, Henricksen, Hillside Dampproofing, H.J. Martin and Son, Howard Bros., IEI General Contractors, IM, Acoustic Inc., Inpro, Interactive Sports Technologies, Intertek-PSI, Jack’s Maintenance Service, JWC Building Specialties, LaForce, Lakeland Overhead Doors, Lewis Construction, Macco’s Commercial Interiors, Marco, MARZ & Assoc., McMahon, Midwest Alarm Services, Multivista Systems, Muza Sheet Metal, NASSCO Inc., Omni Glass & Paint, Oneida Total Integrated Enterprises, Otis Elevator, Pac Van, PER MAR Security Services, Pitlik Wick, Portable Welding and Repair, Precision Construction Services, Professional Service Industries, Prostar Surfaces, Protective Coating Specialists, R.C. Systems, Ramaker & Associates, RDG Planning & Design, Schalow’s Nursery, SHI International, Sid’s Sealants, Spancrete, Streich Equipment, Summit Commercial Fitness, The Boelter Cos., Thunderbird Engineering, TimeClock Plus, Tony’s Wabeno Redi-Mix, Tweet/Garot Mechanical, Ramlow/Stein Architects, United Rentals, Upland Software, Valley Aquatic Solutions, Van Ert Electric, VanZile Contractors, Veit, WasteCap Resource Solutions, Wire Technologies, Wisconsin Public Service Cor., Woodworkers Depot
Photo Credit: Potawatomi Traveling Times