From leading AIA Hampton Roads’ Hard Hat Tour of the Hampton Virginia Aquaplex, to being named to the Advisory Board at R.F. Wilkinson Family YMCA, GuernseyTingle architect Chris Cromer, AIA is doing what he loves.

Cromer was a competitive swimmer in high school and college and got to travel across the east coast and swim in incredible facilities. That sparked a desire to someday design a top-tier aquatics center.  This desire grew so strong that it was also the main inspiration for his thesis project at Virginia Tech.

He’s living out those dreams today.

At GuernseyTingle, Cromer helped design the Northern Neck YMCA Aquatic Center, the first “competition” pool he designed that was constructed. Several years ago, he was able to work on the very early design of what would become the Hampton Virginia Aquaplex, featuring an 8-lane, 50m pool with a diving well with seating for over 1,500 people, another 8-lane, 25m pool, and an outdoor splash park.

Cromer’s excitement for the technical innovations of the project shined through in April during AIA Hampton Roads’ Hard Hat Tour of the facility. There, he highlighted innovations around air quality, precast panels, and more that are critical design aspects of this unique facility.

But Cromer is also passionate about the type of impact that aquatic centers have in the community, such as YMCA facilities. He began a relationship with the YMCA of the Virginia Peninsulas during the aquatics center addition to the Northern Neck facility.

Building on his design passion and commitment to the community, Cromer was also recently named to the Advisory Board at R.F. Wilkinson Family YMCA, joining fellow volunteer board members to help create and support the community organization’s strategic direction.

Out of the pool, Cromer is also a volunteer board member and staffer at Tri-Cities Workcamps, which provides an opportunity for high-school campers to remodel homes for needy owners in the Richmond, Petersburg, and Tri-Cities area.

These are just the latest moves in a professional journey that has allowed Cromer to turn his childhood passion into a rewarding architectural career and community supporter.

Learn more about Cromer here.

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