After a year of construction, the Appleton community celebrated the grand reopening of Erb Park and the Erb Park Pool. This project was a major revitalization of an existing park and pool facility that had been in operation for more than 70 years. The new park features updated playground equipment and a pool complex with an 8-lane Olympic size pool, a separate recreational pool with a zero-depth entry for swimmers of all ages, water slides, and several other water features. In addition, the park features three new structures that utilized masonry units manufactured by County Materials Corporation as their main building component.
The first structure is a large park pavilion with built-in restroom facilities. The second structure cited near the two pools is primarily used for private birthday parties. The third and largest building acts as the gateway and centerpiece to Erb Park. This building contains a main lobby, ticket booths, restrooms, concessions, a first aid window, support offices, and large seasonal locker rooms.
There were several unique design considerations for the main building. Constructed in the middle of a residential neighborhood, the Erb Park pool building was designed to complement its surroundings while also standing apart from other residential layouts. The building was designed with sloped roofs that replicate neighborhood homes. It features a blend of County Stone® Masonry Units, a natural appearing, modular manufactured unit, and Heritage Collection™ Designer Concrete Brick; both mirror masonry used on surrounding homes and serve as an ode to the park’s long history and icon for the city.
County Stone is typically manufactured as thin veneer or 4-inch veneer units. However, to help lower the cost of the building and achieve single-wythe construction, County Materials modified its manufacturing process to provide an 8-inch structural unit with the same aesthetics as County Stone.
Another design goal for this project was for the final design to be fun and engaging. Modular County Stone masonry units allowed masons to install an irregular pattern that naturally courses out during installation. Throughout the building there are several different bands and fields of masonry breaking up individual features of the building, creating a one-of-a-kind park facility that makes the community proud.