PULLMAN, Wash. — A formal groundbreaking ceremony, set for 3 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 3, marks the beginning of construction of Washington State University’s $36 million Student Recreation Center project.
Excavation of the site east of the Beasley Performing Arts Coliseum has begun. The facility, expected to be completed in early 2001, is being funded though the sale of university bonds which will be retired by a special student fee assessment of $100 a semester.
The ceremony is being conducted by student body representatives with Steve Wymer, vice president of ASWSU, serving as master of ceremonies. Members of the university’s Board of Regents, President Samuel H. Smith and other university officials, architect and construction representatives, community leaders, consultants and former students involved in the project are expected to attend.
The center will house swimming pools, an indoor running track, a fitness center and weight training facilities, gymnasiums and racquet courts. It will also provide a wellness center and space for informal socializing.
A student task force recommended the project as a means to meet unfilled demand for recreation facilities, and students voted 64 percent in favor of the mandatory fee. WSU students are heavily involved in recreation activities, and the university boasts one of the largest intramural sports programs in the country.
“This is one of the most exciting student-oriented projects undertaken in the history of WSU,” said Tim McCarty, director of the Compton Union Building and Activities and Recreational Sports. “It will become one of the campus’ prime gathering places for students, enhancing our sense of community.”