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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Rec Center undergoes continuing renovations

The rec center underwent $90,000 of renovations over winter break. Photo by AJ Trela / [email protected]

Throughout the years, Marquette has never been shy building or renovating the many buildings across campus, including an expensive and ongoing project to modernize the Rec Center, located at 525 N. 16th St.

An estimated $90,000 in renovations took place on the sports facility over winter break. The recent renovations come in addition to an estimated $250,000 in improvements to the building finished this past summer, which have been taking place since January last year, according to John Sweeney, director of the Department of Recreational Sports.

The initial improvements have included the painting of the main corridor, installation of more windows on the main west side corridor overlooking the outdoor beach volleyball courts and renovation of the upstairs fitness center.

Workers also performed various odd jobs such as installing new electrical power sources and lighting, painting the stairwell and putting rubber tread on the stairs.

According to Sweeney, the renovations have been made to address concerns raised by students and Marquette Student Government regarding the size of the facility. Sweeney said during the past week there have been days where both the Rec Center and the Rec Plex, located at Straz Tower, have been essentially at capacity, with up to 2,500 students using the facilities.

Sweeney noted, however, that despite the extensive — and necessary — work that has been put in, “not one square foot of space has been added.”

“We’re still not able to fully accommodate our programming needs,” Sweeney said.

Sweeney hinted at a possible new workout facility, however, saying that a feasibility report, which will outline the long-term needs for the university in terms of a new building, will recommend more space. He could not go into further detail, saying the report will be released Feb. 1.

Meghan Ladwig, MUSG President, said she took a tour of the facility and was impressed by the continued efforts to renovate the building and continued discussion with administrators on the topic.

Kevin Clark, a sophomore in the College of Arts & Sciences, said he has noticed the new paint in the Rec Center since last semester. Clark began working as a service area worker checking out towels this semester, but has used the facilities since last year, he said.

“I think that it makes the Rec Center look more appealing, especially for the tours they give for prospective students,” he said.

On a side note, Norris Park, a property recently leased to Marquette by the city, is in the final stages of being prepared for use by club teams and students, Sweeney said.

He said beginning next fall, teams will be using the property located between 18th and 19th streets on Kilbourne after the grass has been given one year to grow. He said that lights will also be added and that the process was “long overdue.”

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