I was recently reading The Forum Gym newsletter and noticed they had a new gym. Awesome right? I continued reading and realised they put it all together in 9 days. Well not quite but I was impressed enough to ask Roxana Olivaries, Director Programs Director at the Forum to tell me more.
Q: What did the refurbishment include?
A: The refurbishment included brand new equipment (both cardio and strength) as well as a complete makeover of the gym space including new light fittings, fans, televisions, interior design, seating, paint job, flooring and branding.
Q: Why was now the time to do it?
A: The last refurbishment at the University was 2007 so it was a priority to not let another year go by without giving something back to our University members.
Q: I read you did it in 9 days…how did you manage that schedule?
A: The schedule was tight and in an attempt to ensure that all works were completed, trades such as electricians, painters and carpenters were engaged over 24 hour periods ie. 6am – 6pm and 6pm – 6am, over the nine days. Each trade worked back to back to ensure their entire scope of works was completed.
Internal staff were used to assist with jobs such as removal of old flooring and fixtures, as well as any cleaning that had to happen to allow the trades to continue working to schedule.
Our Project Manager, designer, and employee , Chad McCloy, worked closely with our equipment suppliers as well as the trades, to balance the hours required by each to get their jobs done.
There was a strict scope of works completed that ensured old equipment was moved out first thing day 1 of closure (Saturday 6 July) and jobs then feel in a strict order to maintain a flow that allowed for the final equipment to get delivered and installed day 7 of closure (Friday 12 July).
Q: What wouldn’t you do again?
A: Wait 7 years for the next refurb! The equipment had definitely had it so brand new equipment (and a complete new look) was definitely what was in order.
9 days was tight (as 4 of them were weekend days). Although more days would have helped, as a business, we cannot afford to have the most used area of the club closed off to members for much more than what we did this year.
The last day saw 10 internal staff (me included) working close to 18 hours just to make sure everything was perfect for our 5.30am opening for our members on the Monday.
Q: What have members been saying about their new gym?
A: Members love it!
We have integrated the outside walkway area into our gym space as our formal stretching area. Members love the outlook onto the fields and the sun that beams through the large windows provides a nice warm area to stretch and relax.
The strength training area now takes up the 500 square metre space previously shared by those stretching. This allows for more room to do the latest in functional training and strength training.
Q: What is your favourite area in the new gym and why?
A: We invested in an eight station matrix system from Ironedge and this has by far been the most popular item on the gym floor. It allows up to 10 people to train on the system at the one time, using it as a squat rack, or doing pull ups on the monkey bars, or using the suspension trainers off the bars.
Our personal trainers are loving it as a way to have their client in one location doing a wide range of activity.
I thought refurbishing a gym was meant to be hard work, but looking at this image from their Facebook page where you can see the refurbishment in progress and some behind the scenes antics – I am not so sure now! Well done to the Forum gym team. You deserve a break.