COMO YOU KNOW: Activity and Recreation Center

Monday, April 30, 2012 | 2:58 p.m. CDT; updated 7:40 p.m. CDT, Friday, May 9, 2014

CoMo You Know, a community wiki, adds context to stories of local interest and serves as a reference tool for readers.


The Activity and Recreation Center is a public health and fitness center owned and operated by the city of Columbia.


Address: 1701 W. Ash St.

Phone: 573-874-7700



The Activity and Recreation Center is a 73,000 square foot health club, fitness center and exercise place run by Columbia Parks and Recreation. The facility includes a 13,000 square foot pool, two full basketball courts, gymnasium, strength training equipment and weights, cardio equipment and an indoor track, according to its website. You can view ARC's hours of operation here.

The idea for the recreation center developed in July 1998 when Mayor Darwin Hindman appointed a committee to determine the indoor recreational needs of Columbia citizens. Funding was made possible by a 1/4 cent sales tax passed by Columbia voters in November 1999. A number of donors also contributed upwards of $631,000. Construction began in spring 2001, and the facility was dedicated Dec. 15, 2002. The ARC was completed at a cost of $9.1 million.

The city's plan for the ARC is for it to be self-sufficient and to rely on memberships and fees to avoid a tax burden upon citizens. In a Missourian article published days before the ARC's opening, Mike Hood, director of Parks and Recreation, said the center needed to sell 1,250 annual memberships and collect fees to support the annual operating costs of about $1.6 million.

Before the center opened Dec. 15, 2002, city officials emphasized the ARC was a gathering place for members of the community, including the Columbia Farmers' Market, which has been operating at the site before the center was even built. The center plays host to a number of meetings and gatherings, including a campaign event for Vice President Joe Biden during the 2008 presidential election.


Official Activity and Recreation Center website

History and donors of ARC

ARC, city buses help some escape blizzard-induced boredom, February 2011 Missourian article

Columbia residents start Happy New U with fitness activities, January 2012 Missourian article

Updated: April 30, 2012

Like what you see here? Become a member.

Show Me the Errors (What's this?)

Report corrections or additions here. Leave comments below here.

You must be logged in to participate in the Show Me the Errors contest.


Leave a comment

Speak up and join the conversation! Make sure to follow the guidelines outlined below and register with our site. You must be logged in to comment. (Our full comment policy is here.)

  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Don't use language that makes personal attacks on fellow commenters or discriminates based on race, religion, gender or ethnicity.
  • Use your real first and last name when registering on the website. It will be published with every comment. (Read why we ask for that here.)
  • Don’t solicit or promote businesses.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report comment" link.

You must be logged in to comment.

Forget your password?

Don't have an account? Register here.