On budget and on track, the results of the CU Rec Center renovations will open in phases beginning in March of 2013.
Dubbed the “Buff Up the Rec” initiative, the Rec Center update started in April of 2011 with a ballot initiated by CUSG to massively redesign the rec center. The renovations will increase the rate of tuition for each student by $121-125 per semester, beginning in fall 2013. This charge will exist for the next 25 years.
Students voted in favor of this proposal, and ground work began last June.
Seniors Jenny Saboy and Kelly Turgeon examine the Rec Center renovation plans. “I’m bummed out that we’ll miss out on the new gym, especially since the tuition we’re paying is going toward it,” Saboy said.
Construction is not an uncommon sight at CU. For years, the campus has undergone many revisions, in part to keep things up-to-date — from the renovations currently taking place at Kittredge to the construction of the parking lot by Macky Auditorium and Sewall Hall.
For Katie Leitner, a 19-year-old sophomore business major, the construction created by the Rec Center renovation is inconvenient.
“I do have to make my way around it for a few of my classes, and there always seems to be construction somewhere on campus at all times,” Leitner said. “But as long as the construction is a good use of students’ money and a beneficial addition to our school, then it seems to me that the inconvenience is worth it.”
“It doesn’t affect my workflow, but it probably will when we have to move the entrance to a different location,” said Reid Hunter, a finance major and Rec Center employee. “That’s happening in mid-October. We are moving [the entrance] to the basketball courts, and once that happens it’s going to be a little hectic.”
Tim Jorgensen, associate director of programs for the Rec Center, said that everything has been going smoothly for “Buff Up The Rec.”
“Because this is a phase project, things will open up starting in March of next year,” Jorgensen said. “The new locker rooms will be open then, most likely around when students come back from spring break.”
He said it should be the first example students will have of how great the upgrade to the building will be.
From there, a new ice ring will open up and then new climbing walls. This should all be taking place next year, Jorgensen said.
He said that students have plenty to look forward to with the new design of the Rec Center.
“There will be lots more equipment, because there are lines for treadmills and the like. The spaces [students] will be in will be a lot more lighted, and be a lot more enjoyable to work out in,” Jorgensen said.
Budget-wise, the program has been managing well. There are contract bids to go along with each phase of the construction.
“It still is pretty accurate at this point, and students will be getting a good value for their dollar,” Jorgensen said.
Jorgensen estimated that the planned Buff-shaped pool will be one of the last things completed as the project finishes up around early spring of 2014.
“As one area closes down, another area opens up,” Jorgensen said, adding the rec will remain open all throughout the renovations.
To find out more about the “Buff Up The Rec” program, click here, or check out the “Construction Corner” located near the customer service desk at the Rec Center.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Zachary Cook at Zachary.Cook@colorado.edu.
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