As swimsuit and jort season rapidly approaches, the seasonal influx of students using the Student Recreation Center is at an all time low during this construction season. The noise, crowdedness, and fear of bat attacks prevent all but the most dedicated regulars from visiting the Rec. The Rec has responded by reminding the student body that huge improvements in the facility are well on their way.
“We are very excited about the upcoming developments here at the Rec and wanted to remind our students that the waiting will be worth it,” said Dennis Corrington, executive director of the Rec. “By this time next year, students will have 23 percent more space to come to the Rec and relax, study, or meet with their organizations.”
The $50 million project was approved to accommodate the needs of the growing bodies of the growing student body. For years, students expressed their concerns with the current Rec.
“There is exactly one place where we are allowed to deadlift,” Cody Evans, a senior kinesiology major said. “You either have to try and work in with some people or wait for 20 minutes.”
“Last time I was at the Rec, I couldn’t find an open cardio machine, so I had to run on the track. It was pretty busy up there too,” Rachel Terry, a sophomore biomedical science major, said.
The Rec’s staff has listened to the students and hopes that the renovations will address their biggest concerns.
“After getting some feedback from our students, it seems they wanted some more space to sit and do homework, which is why we are adding plenty of lounge areas, complete with power outlets and Wi-Fi,” Corrington said. “We also heard concerns about people not finding equipment to use in the weight room, so we’re making the weight room bigger to spread everything out and make it easier to find everything.”
Many students reported that “waiting” was the worst part of their visits to the Rec. The renovations will also address this by adding a brand new mega-desk system so a student will never have to wait to use a customer service desk again.
“We got a lot of complaints from students saying they had to wait too long at the Rec. We hope to alleviate these wait times by streamlining our resources for them,” Corrington said. “The mega-desk will take over one of the basketball courts and will allow students to swipe their ID, get a towel, sign up for a summer adventure, and order a smoothie all in one place. No waiting.”
Other staff members, like strength and conditioning coordinator Josh Adams, said that their direct interaction with the students helped shape the plan to improve the Rec.
“I would see half a dozen people crammed around one squat rack,” Adams said. “With the weight room expansion, there will be plenty of space for people to wait for a rack.”
Texas A&M hopes that these additions to the Rec will help maintain status as a top tier research institution.