A&M Announces $54-Million Expansion & Renovation of Student Rec Center

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COLLEGE STATION Texas A&M is flexing its arm when it comes to student recreation.

Tuesday it announced a $54-million-dollar expansion and renovation of its recreational sports facility.

And the University is doing it without raising student Rec Sports fees.

Take your pick of just about any recreational sport, and Texas A&M's Student Recreation Center can accommodate you.

Freshman Kinesiology major Makenna Spencer of Spring makes the Recreation Center part of her health routine.

"I'm very interested in health and my personal well being."

But Makenna says with popularity comes problems at the center.

She says, "It's a little bit crowded. It's sometimes hard on certain days to find equipment you want to work out on."

And A&M administrators heard the calls for more room at the center that was built in 1995.

"This facility was full the day that we opened", says A&M Rec Sports Executive Director Dennis Corrington. "Since that time the student body has grown 25%. And what our goal was when we started this project was to add enough square footage to match that 25%."

The project will include more strength and conditioning space, an additional gym, new activity rooms, an additional lap pool, renonovation of A&M's natatorium that's home to the Aggie swimming and diving teams, and replacing all lighting fixtures to reduce energy costs.

Multi-use activity rooms and a large auditorium-style meeting room with glass windows will be built very close to the outfield fence of Olsen Field, possibly a new target for A&M baseball players.

Rick Hall, the A&M Rec Sports Senior Associate Director says,
"So I asked the architect and I asked again if we're using baseball-proof glass. I've been reassured that the glass will be there, shots will hit it."

Either way, a homerun for students like Makenna Spencer.
"I'm really excited, not only to get more equipment, but just to have more space."

The expansion and makeover is expected to be completed in December of 2015.