Case Study by Rob Burgess
- StarTrac 10TRX FreeRunner treadmills
- Schwinn AC Power indoor cycling bikes
- TRX Training Zone
- Nautilus cable machines
Just south of Savannah is a community that’s tucked into the lagoons and sprawling woods that pepper southern Georgia. Waterways isn’t just a quiet and active community for families; it’s considered the living community of the Coastal Empire. With 500 total properties planned, its on-the-water lifestyle and conservation-focused construction render a natural haven for those aching to leave city life behind.
In the middle of all this is Marina Village, Waterways’ vibrant forum, and Cottenham Exchange is its newly constructed epicenter. Within Cottenham Exchange residents can enjoy two pristine swimming pools, shopping and dining options, as well as a professionally curated and installed fitness center, courtesy of Heartline Fitness.
Meeting Clients More Than Halfway
Waterways was in the very middle of the Cottenham Exchange construction when I was first contacted. Their previous fitness contractor was unable to complete the deal because Waterways wanted to lease the equipment.
In short, Waterways wanted to be able to rent their fitness center’s equipment, rather than purchase it outright. This is very typical for large installations, and for good reason. Fitness equipment gets outdated quickly. Most properties don’t want to be stuck with the revenue loss if they’re just going to change out the treadmills in four years, give or take.
“I have been totally impressed by the size of the Cottenham Exchange workout facility, its user-friendly setup, and the quality and variety of the equipment. Prior to moving here, my wife was a spin and bootcamp instructor who also used the fitness equipment on a regular basis. She is also very impressed with the variety and quality of the equipment we have here.”Keith Lenox, Facilities Manager
Instead of a purchase solution, we were easily able to put together a lease-to-purchase plan, which will allow Waterways to rent the equipment until it was paid for outright, or they decide to renovate the fitness space — whichever comes first. Because of this deal, we were able to save them about 25–30% of their budget, running through the property’s HOA.
Diving Deeper Into Design
When you’re designing a fitness space for a residential property, you need to take a typical resident’s daily activities into account. As a modern solution to community living, Waterways needed modern equipment to mimic the active lifestyles of its residents without getting overly complex. Gym users want to be able to complete their workout in a fluid environment, without having to maneuver from room to room to work with compatible pieces of equipment.
“People of every fitness level have the ability to challenge themselves on numerous cardio machines, full-body workout machines, and an array of free weights. I couldn’t be happier with a neighborhood gym.”Doug Elliot, Waterways Resident
We designed the Cottenham Exchange fitness center into zones, creating separate spaces for intent and purpose. We laid out the cardio section with brand new Star Trac ellipticals. The ellipticals offer interactive fitness routines and beautiful displays that allow a user to broadcast content via their mobile device.
In an annex from the atrium, we replaced what would be encumbered cardio space with a functional fitness offering in the shape of a TRX station. This helps not only to provide a comprehensive workout, but also to clean up the room with convenient and functional storage space.
“Like many other developments experienced during the pandemic, the Cottenham Exchange facility at Waterways faced many challenges including slowed lot sales pace, construction material shortages, equipment price increases, etc. right in the middle of construction. After a brief redesign, Heartline Fitness was able to lower our current equipment pricing by 30% without reducing our equipment quantity. They were also instrumental in assisting us with securing financing for the project.
The equipment was delivered on schedule, professionally installed by their team, and more importantly our residents and potential buyers are very impressed. We are looking forward to working with Rob and the Heartline Fitness team in the future!”Ron Lamm, Waterways developer
Indoor cycling has become increasingly popular during the pandemic. In juxtaposition, it’s a great community-building exercise — perfect for Waterways’ outgoing and active community. This is the main reason we built out a virtual interactive zone.
The virtual room is equipped with 12 Schwinn indoor cycling bikes and extra space for group yoga, but the standout piece of equipment here is the touchpad content library. Users just need to choose their workout, and they’re ready to go spinning or stretching with their friends in a more traditional gym setting.
Where other vendors failed to provide, the same request was a breeze for us to implement. We couldn’t be more proud of the way Waterways’ project came to fruition. We also know it’s a big hit with the residents, too.