Williston Area Recreation Center

Williston, North Dakota

As the largest park district-owned indoor recreation center in the country, the Williston Area Recreation Center (WARC) makes a big impact on a booming community. Located on the Williston State College Campus and partnering with the Williston Park District to attract and retain families, the 236,000 sf recreation facility helps relieve boredom through a multi-activity service offering, including an aquatic center, full-sized tennis courts, four hardwood basketball courts, on-site child sitting, and community meeting places. Natural light fills the prominent aquatic center which is complete with an indoor water park with slides, lazy river, zero-entry pool, and a surf-ready wave pool. A fully-accessible instructional pool and 50m competition and diving pool with spectator seating support the community’s athletics. A 16,200 sf indoor turf creates a space ideal for soccer, fastpitch and baseball practices, batting cages, and pick-up volleyball games. A six lane, 200-meter running track surrounds four hardwood basketball courts, which are open to the above fitness track and make up the extensive track and gym area. Recreational areas are complete with golf simulator, racquetball courts, spin room, group exercise classes, and cardio area. With secure on-site child sitting, youth gathering areas, senior social spaces and technology and flex spaces for any purpose the WARC was designed and built to suit the needs of the diverse interests and growing population of Williston — all of which were provided under budget and on schedule.
The Williston Area Recreation Center is more than just a fitness facility to the community of Williston. With its intuitive design and approach to the community’s current and future needs, the WARC is a building that proves to be a strong investment in the community of Williston’s future growth and potential. “Bringing a family to the rec center is like dropping your kids off at Disney,” said Larry Grondahl a former member of the park board. “It’s a game changer. … It’s really changed people’s outlook on moving here.”


Awards & Certifications

  • 2014 – Star Fund: Project of the Year
  • 2014 – NDRPA: Golden Egg Award
  • 2014 – AIA North Dakota: Merit Award

Completion Date


"The Williston Area Recreation Center is so enviable that if you don’t live in Williston, it could make you wish you did.”
– Bismarck Tribune