Case Studies

Goldring Centre for High Performance Sport

goldring-centre-sport-centre noise-control vibration control toronto ontario

Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Architects: Patkau Architects and MacLennan Jaunkalns Miller Architects
General Contractor: EllisDon
Owner/Operator: University of Toronto


The $58 million Goldring Centre for High Performance Sport is  University of Toronto’s state-of-the-art hub for sport and exercise research, sport medicine, training and competition.

It houses a 2000-seat international-level basketball and volleyball arena, a sports medicine clinic, a range of sport and exercise research labs, an Olympic-class weight lifting room and a fitness centre. The Centre hosted court related sports events as part of the Toronto 2015 Pan Am Games.

The Centre’s design and structure is spatially and functionally complex: a dense series of large stacked floors suspended from a hanging truss system over an even larger, deep, below-ground indoor sports arena. This unique configuration and the featured activities of each stack level creates some unusual acoustical, noise and vibration challenges.

HGC Engineering reviewed the drawings and specifications to identify appropriate acoustic criteria for speech intelligibility in the basketball and volleyball arena, performing appropriate analysis, and providing recommendations related to architectural finishes, configurations, etc., to achieve an acoustic environment suitable for the venue.

We also identified locations where specific acoustic separations were required for acoustical privacy or to limit sound transmission between specific locations.  Given the unusual stacking of some of the spaces, some challenges became apparent such as the separation of the office areas from the mechanical spaces and fitness rooms, and also within the office area, between private offices or meeting rooms and other offices or circulation areas.

One key area of concern was with regards to an MRI  located in the sports medicine clinic on the 4th floor. We reviewed the potential vibration impact on it and other sensitive equipment in the medical treatment rooms from structure-born noise and vibration problems related to the weight room and fitness centre located in close proximity. Suitable vibration mitigating sports floor treatments were identified and recommended in relation to their use and the slab construction.

In addition to the challenges within the building,  potential ground-borne vibration transmission from the new facility’s mechanical services into the neighbouring heritage building were been flagged.  As part of our mandate we also reviewed the design, structure, footings, etc of the Sport Centre’s garbage compactor, truck turntable, and chiller in order to provide input on appropriate vibration isolation measures to consider.

Acoustical Consulting Services Delivered Include:

  • Environmental Noise and Vibration Study
  • Sound Transmission Class (STC) Analysis
  • Room Acoustics of Sports Arena and Atrium
  • Building Services Noise and Vibration control (HVAC Systems, Pumps, Compactors, Generators, etc.)
  • Acoustical Privacy Between Offices, Meeting Rooms, Clinic Rooms etc.
  • Noise and Vibration Control of Amenity Spaces (Fitness Centres, Weight Lifting Room, Arena etc.)
  • Structural Vibration Assessment
  • Vibration Isolation of Sensitive Equipment
  • Façade and Glazing Specification
  • Shop Drawing Review
  • Site Inspections


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