Archinect
Bialosky

Bialosky

Cleveland | New York, NY

anchor
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
8 more images  ↓

Edgewater Beach House

The new Edgewater Beach House is the fourth lakefront “Beach House” facility in the history of Cleveland’s premier lakefront park, Edgewater Park. As a legacy project of the Metroparks’s 2020 strategic plan, CMP developed a vision for a new lakefront facility acting as a “community hub,” reconnecting Cleveland to the Lake Erie waterfront and opening in time for CMP’s 100 year anniversary.

While the building program suggested a utilitarian beach structure, the vision was for an iconic regional destination. With the modest project budget of only $4.7 million, it was vital to maximize every aspect of the project – both programmatic and physical – to meet the owner’s and public’s aspirations. Throughout the project development, the design team created consensus across constituent stakeholders through a rigorous process, featuring public and stakeholder meetings, an online public input forum called MindMixer, and thorough case study analyses of other facilities.

The resulting design solution leverages the tension between the duality of anchoring the Beach House to its site and park history dating to the 1890s, while intertwining its urban and programmatic roles, to create a dynamic community hub. These notions of anchoring and intertwining are central to the project’s design. They are physically manifested through a curving roof form with the appearance of being in motion but held fast – anchored by a massive site wall that emerges out of the landscape and then intertwines with a light, elegant bridge, creating a new connection to the adjacent neighborhood.

An existing pedestrian access tunnel connects with a new pedestrian bridge, which spans a new multi-use recreation path, connecting to downtown Cleveland. The bridge leads to an upper-level open-air pavilion, providing sweeping lakefront, city, sunrise, and sunset views. The pavilion is centered around a double-sided fireplace, large hearth, and seasonal bar structure, which transforms into a sweeping ramp that connects back to the beach. The first floor contains a concession kitchen, changing and restroom facilities, single-stall non-gendered restrooms, and touch-down offices for park staff. To maximize the usable square footage and budget, all storage and utility room spaces are located underneath the ramp. On the second level, vertical chases are provided to rooftop equipment through trunk-like groupings of non-structural pipe columns around the structural columns. A green roof reduces storm water runoff, cools the building, and provides a bird nesting habitat. A new ample-sized public plaza and re-imagined patron egress includes expanded picnic seating, meeting areas, and shaded concession queueing areas, with a geometry designed to reduce sand migration. Three large custom fabricated swings hang from the pedestrian bridge, providing a sense of playful whimsy, while screening a quieter picnic area called “the Bosque” from the main pedestrian path.

Opened in time to host the Metroparks 100-year celebration, attended by 35,000 patrons, the Beach House has exceeded expectations by both becoming a neighborhood hub and an iconic destination that reconnects Clevelanders with their lakefront. In first its first six months of operation, attendance at events increased by 200%, with overall park attendance up 20% year over year. 

 
Read more

Status: Built
Location: Cleveland, OH, US
Firm Role: Architect
Additional Credits: Cleveland Metroparks (Owner, Client)
Karpinski (MEP)
Environmental Design Group (Civil + Landscape)
Barber & Hoffman (Structural)
Terracon (GeoTech)
The A.M. Higley Company (CMR)

 
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Feinknopf Photography
© Bialosky Cleveland
© Bialosky Cleveland
© Bialosky Cleveland
© Bialosky Cleveland