By Collin Overton

Eastern officials official broke ground for the new Student Wellness and Recreation Center Monday morning, according to a press release sent by Jerry Wallace, director of strategic communications. The ceremony took place on the former site of the Todd and Dupree residence halls.

“Today is a banner day, continuing the transformation of our university,” said Craig Turner, chair of the EKU Board of Regents. “It’s a tremendous honor for me and for the board to see these types of things happen.”

The new facility will more than double the size of EKU’s existing recreation center, encompassing approximately 130,000 square feet upon completion. The facility will open in Fall 2019 and promises a variety of features, including:

  • Three regulation-sized basketball/volleyball courts
  • Three racquetball courts (equipment to alternately be used for volleyball)
  • Multi-activity court (MAC) gymnasium
  • Weight and fitness areas, as well as a dedicated cardio area and platform
  • Two-story rock climbing wall and bouldering area
  • Four-lane lap and recreation pool with zero-depth entry, vortex and spa
  • Fitness testing lab
  • Three multi-purpose rooms/studios
  • Game room/golf simulator
  • Recreation equipment checkout area

Billy Martin, associate vice president and chief student affairs officer, predicted that the new facility would have a profound impact on recruitment and retention.

“Students who use [such a] facility are retained at a higher rate,” Martin said.

The Eastern Progress will follow up with additional details of the recreation center at the start of the Spring 2018 semester.