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Facility Renovations 23-24

2.26.2024: Phase 3 Statement

After seeing how happy the community was when we opened the fitness zone, track, and main entrance back up from Phase Two of our renovation, we shouldn’t have been surprised by the resounding disappointment caused by our announcement about the third renovation phase, which is the last phase in our plans to better our Campus Recreation Center. We understand the frustration; the Rec Center has been with us through thick and thin these past 20 years. However, with all the loving wear and tear we’ve put it through, it deserves a little TLC. In the meantime, we hope shedding light on the situation will create some understanding for the frustrating circumstances at hand.

To ease any unnecessary concerns, we first want to remind everyone that the entire Rec Center will NOT be closed during this third phase of renovation. At some point, the facility will only close for 10 days to allow the oil-based floor finish to be applied to our new wood floors. It will not be safe for participants or staff to be in the facility during that time due to the odor and the fumes from the finish. This 10-day period will likely be occurring during the summer.

 In fact, although Main Gym 1, 2, and 3, squash and racquetball courts, and the Outdoor Adventure area will be temporarily closed, we are working hard to ensure that their activities are still available to you. We will be holding volleyball, badminton, and indoor soccer in the MAC on a rotating schedule.

 In other news, we are expecting to reopen the climbing wall and the outdoor leisure pool on March 25th. Sand volleyball by the outdoor leisure pool will also be available. Students can also recreate outside at Gertner Field Monday through Thursday from 4-6 PM and Friday from 4-8 PM.

We hope our transparency with this situation eases some of your frustrations and gets you excited about the Rec’s improvements. We can’t wait for you to see everything we have in store for you!

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

“Why fix something that isn’t broken? I’d rather have new equipment instead!”

As good as our building is at hiding it, the Rec Center needs some big repairs! Some of you may remember when we reconstructed our roof back in 2021 due to frequent leaking. Although the roof was replaced, the water damage to our walls and floors remained.

The wood floors are cupping and buckling in some areas and require replacing to ensure your safety. Additionally, the cracks you see in the CMU walls along Main Gym Court 3 are caused from the building settling. This portion of the building must be reinforced to prevent further settling, further damage, and compromise the structural integrity of the building. The building itself is also roughly 20 years old, which is older than some of you! We want to take care of our building as it gets older so it can keep taking care of us.

For those wanting new equipment, check out our new Red Zone Fitness space, which has new racks, some cardio, and multi-functional equipment including battle ropes, heavy bags, kettlebells, and a MARs screen that demonstrates how to do different exercises using the equipment. We also have a slam wall for medicine ball workouts, a turf area with a wheelbarrow sled, plyo boxes, and more for functional training!

"Why can’t reconstruction occur exclusively over the summer?”

Reconstruction has been a long and complicated process. Summers are not long enough to accommodate this invasive work and the condition of the floors require more immediate attention. Phasing the renovation has made it possible to always keep several sections of the Rec Center open at any given time. For that, we are very grateful, as we know how difficult it would be for our community to have to go months without a Rec Center at all.

“When will renovation/reconstruction be done?”

Anyone who’s ever had their house renovated knows that reconstruction can involve lots of unexpected delays. However, we are hoping to be finished by August 2024.

“When does Smoothie King reopen?”

Unfortunately, Smoothie King will not be returning to the CRWC. However, we think you’ll be excited about our new vendor. Shake Smart is a smoothie place created by two college students looking to make healthy meal options more accessible to fellow students. In addition to smoothies, they also serve sandwiches, oatmeal, wraps, and coffee. Their locations are exclusively on college campuses, we’re lucky to have them here!

 

2.21.2024: Phase 3 Update

The final phase of the renovation floor project (Phase 3) will commence on Wednesday, February 28, 2024. During this phase, the Main Gym courts 1, 2, and 3, the Outdoor Adventure office, the two racquetball courts, and two squash courts will be closed through the end of summer 2024.

Indoor Soccer, Badminton, and Volleyball will be relocated to the MAC on a rotating schedule. The schedule can be found posted outside the MAC. Additionally, Outdoor Adventure gear rental will be available for checkout at the Welcome Desk.

2.8.2024: Entry Relocation Update

On 2.12.2024, the entry/exit point to the Rec Center will be relocated to the primary entrance/exit on the University Drive. 

2.2.2024: Fitness Zone Updates 

The Fitness Zone is scheduled to open on Wednesday, February 7 at 6:00 am. Fitness Zone floor near completion

1.31.2024: Fitness Update

What is the purpose of the Rec Center renovations?
The Rec Center is currently undergoing a three-phase floor replacement project that began last April. All floors are being replaced due to damage from previous moisture issues in the facility and the replacement is being done in three phases to minimize the impact on students and ensure we have some activity spaces open at all times.
The Fitness Zone, a weight and cardio area on the second floor, is part of the floor replacement project. The existing rubber floor was damaged and worn down in the strength section and other high-traffic areas, and the subfloor was also damaged in some sections causing it to be uneven. The Fitness Zone was taken offline the week of Thanksgiving, and the replacement was planned to be complete by the first week of spring semester classes to minimize student impact during what is typically the Rec Center’s slowest time of the year. 

What delayed the opening of the Fitness Zone?
Unfortunately, the project team found deeper issues once the existing floor was removed and additional repairs were needed before the new floor could be installed. We were unable to reopen the Fitness Zone by the first week of spring classes, but it is expected to be open in a few weeks.

What actions were implemented to address the second-floor delay during the interim period?
In the interim, we have moved as much fitness equipment as possible to the main gym, court 1, to accommodate students. Students can engage in a wide variety of exercises for a full-body workout experience by utilizing the temporary equipment in the gym and the new Red Zone fitness space on the first floor, which opened last semester and features equipment such as kettlebells, battle ropes, TRX systems and Plyo boxes. We are working diligently to complete the Fitness Zone floor and hope to reopen that space in early February.

We recognize the inconvenience to students and appreciate their understanding as we work to make these necessary improvements that will ensure we have a safe and well-maintained space that will support the fitness and overall well-being of our students for years to come.

Cardio side progress Weight Room side progress

 

4.1.2023: Plans to replace the floor of the Rec Center are underway! Pardon our dust and thank you for your patience. 

Exciting News! With the approval from the Board of Regents on March 24, 2022, the replacement of the Campus Recreation and Wellness Center flooring has commenced. This project began in April 2023 and is estimated to be completed in May 2024; it will be implemented in three phases and the building will remain open and operational.

The Rec Center will close on July 14 thru July 23. It will re-open on July 24, 2023 at 6 am, please use the Special Events side entrance located off of MLK Blvd facing the Welcome Center.  

Some of the improvements include:

  • Addition of new fitness spaces on the first floor
    • Free weight space
    • Functional fitness space
    • Turf
  • Replacement of all wood floors
  • Replacement of terrazzo flooring
  • Renovation of entry and Welcome Desk
  • Additional offices
  • Repair of second-floor Fitness Zone flooring

Renovation Plans


FAQs

The renovation will be implemented in 3 phases for minimal activity impact. The spaces listed within each phase will be closed during the specified timeframe.

Phase 1: April 2023 - August 2023

  • Muti-purpose 1 and 2
  • MAC
  • Center Court
  • Racquetball Courts 1 -4

Phase 2: July 2023 - January 2024

  • Rotunda
  • Wellness Suite
  • Welcome Desk
  • Climbing Wall
  • Limited locker room access
  • Fitness Zone and Track 
  • MultiPurpose 3, 4, & 5

Phase 3: January 2024 - May 2024

  • Main Gym courts 1-3
  • Racquetball Courts 5-6
  • Squash Courts 1 and 2
  • Multi-Purpose 3, 4, & 5

Yes, all UH students and CRWC members will continue to have access to all activity spaces that are not listed in the current phase closures in the above FAQ.

Yes, temporary walls and containment will be constructed to ensure proper heating and cooling as well as ventilation throughout the project.

Yes, however, during Phase 2 the locker rooms will be impacted. During Phase 2, the locker room entrances and exits will be located in the aquatic wet hallway and have a maximum capacity of 49 people. Access to the Family Locker Room will be limited to Natatorium hours and will only be accessible through that entrance. There will be day-use lockers available throughout the project, and permanent locker rentals and towel service will still be available.

Group‑Fitness classes will be scheduled in open spaces in the CRWC. Please see here for the most up-to-date Group Fitness schedule

Yes, during Phase 2. Updated maps and signage will be posted as we approach that phase.


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