Student-athletes at the University have access to some of the finest athletic facilities a college can offer. Far from the same can be said for the rest of the student body. The conditions of the Central Campus Recreational Building, North Campus Recreational Building and Intramural Sports Building are each far below the quality that students deserve.

From the lack of new equipment, to the decrepit locker and shower rooms, the University’s recreational facilities have long needed a facelift. The University’s recent decision to allocate $1.6 million to upgrade the school’s recreational facilities is a step in the right direction. But the University has waited too long to address the state of recreational facilities that are widely used by students, and it must ensure that these facilities are improved to a level that is acceptable to the student body.

According to an article in the Daily today (“Recreation facilities get 1.6M renovation”), the $1.6 million will cover the cost of 60 new cardio machines, the addition of televisions in cardio areas, refurbished lobbies and renovated lockers and shower rooms for the school’s recreational facilities. Studies are currently being conducted to determine future renovations to the facilities, such as the expansion of gym space and the installation of wireless Internet and food areas. The Department of Recreational Sports explained that the upgrades have taken a long time to be proposed because recreational facilities have little value for the school in recruiting and retaining students.

While the planned renovations are a promising start, the University should make sure future renovations cover the gamut of what needs improvement in recreational facilities on campus. More new cardio machines are a necessity. As a campus of nearly 40,000 students, 60 new cardio machines will only slightly solve the problem of overcrowding. And the shortage isn’t limited to cardio machines. A variety of new equipment is also needed, from new weights and weight machines, to new rental equipment like basketballs and squash rackets.

More spacious cardio and weightlifting areas are also needed, as students should have the opportunity to work out in an open setting — not the current congested exercise rooms. Many facility surfaces, like the basketball and racquetball courts, have been worn down and are in need of serious refurbishing. The availability of wireless Internet and food options would also make the recreational facilities more functional places for students.

The University’s explanation as to why these renovations have been their last priority shows a serious disregard for student needs. The conditions of the University’s recreational facilities are about the quality of life for students, not whether or not the recreational facilities draw students to come to the school. The University’s negligence can easily be corrected by appropriately handling the planned $1.6 million renovations and future improvements. The facilities and equipment available at the CCRB, NCRB and IM Building need to reflect the desires of the student body.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published.