SFS Architecture

Recreation

Little Sand Bay Visitor Center

Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, WI

New visitor center to enhance the park experience at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore

Challenge

Design a new visitor center that lightly touches the National Park’s ecosystem and responds to the architectural vocabulary of surrounding historic properties.

Process

Due to aging infrastructure, environmental and safety related issues, it was deemed necessary to replace the existing Little Sand Bay Visitor Center at Apostle Islands National Lakeshore. Based on feedback from public listening sessions,  several design alternatives for a new visitor center were developed. The public provided input on the proposed designs via an online website.  Once consensus was achieved, plans were developed to demolish the existing building, clean up fuel-contaminated soil and design a new visitor center.

Solution

When complete, the new 1,650 SF visitor center will include a public lobby, information desk, sales area, conference room, break room and offices/work rooms for park staff. In addition, a permanent cradle and canopy are provided for the historic TWILITE fishing tug. Other outdoor covered spaces will include educational and interpretive displays.