Kempsville Recreation Center


​Kempsville Recre​ation Center opened in 1977 as Virginia Beach's first community recreation center. After more than 37 years of serving the community, Kempsville closed its doors in February 2015 to make way for a newer, more modern center.​

Construction Updates​

January​​ 2017: Concrete work is complete with the exception of a portion of the indoor track. Geo-thermal heating and cooling system piping and the parking lot gravel base are complete and curbs and sidewalks are being installed. Brick and block masonry is mostly complete. Pool shells, pump and filter installation and associated plumbing is complete. Structural work (steel columns and timber beams) to close in the Natatorium, Lobby and Weight Room areas is complete, and a temporary weather enclosure has been constructed. Decking and roofing the final third of the building is complete. Window glazing has been installed in many parts of the building and interior finish work is being completed in those areas. The child development playground is being installed and a new playground and other improvements have been installed in the adjacent Lark Down Park. 

View ​C​onstruction Camera​


 Concept Plan

Kempsville lobby rendering 

​Rendering of the lobby area

At 87,116 square feet, the plan includes a more efficient use of space featuring:

  • double gymnasium
  • indoor walking/jogging track
  • fitness areas with free weights, circuit weight equipment, cardiovascular equipment, group fitness class and dance space
  • indoor pool with zero-depth entry, six 25-meter lap lanes, two 1-meter diving boards, aqua track, leisure pool and water play components
  • therapeutic recreation program space
  • locker rooms and family changing areas
  • three child development rooms
  • seven multipurpose rooms
  • catering kitchen
  • improved parking and pedestrian access

Kempsville pool rendering 

Rendering of the indoor pool area​​​​​​​​​​​​​


 Floor Plans

Kempsville First Floot PlanKempsville Second Floor Plan ​
Cl​ick images for larger view.



A 2009 facility assessment rated the overall conditi​on of the facility as “poor.” Improvements were needed for accessibility and ADA compliance, and the plumbing, mechanical and electrical systems were nearing the end of their lifecycles. The existing pool and associated infrastructure would have required additional significant renovations.

A consultant, HBA Architecture, evaluated potential cost savings and lifecycle costs associated with retaining the existing pool and other portions of the facility, particularly those components that were renovated in the last five years. Both HBA and City staff recommended demolishing the existing structure and constructing an entirely new building, which has the lowest 30-year Estimated Cost of Energy and the lowest present value Total 30-Year Life Cycle Cost.

 Cost & Funding

In May 2012, City Council approved the Kempsville Community Recreation Center Modernization. Based on the square footage and current construction costs, the project is estimated to cost $32 million. This includes design, construction, contingencies, furniture and equipment. ​

 Public Input

​Feedback on the draft concept plan was gathered during public meetings in early December 2013 and through Virtual Town Hall. All feedback gleaned from the public strongly influenced the final concept plan, posted above.


  • December 2013: Draft concept plans shared with residents through public meetings & Virtual Town Hall
  • February 2014 - March 2015: Consultant team developed detailed design and construction documents
  • February 20, 2015: Kempsville Recreation Center closed
  • March - May 2015: Kempsville Recreation Center demolished
  • July 2015 - Early 2017: Construction of new Kempsville Recreation Center​
  • Spring​ 2017:  The new Kempsville Recreation Center will open​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​
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