TAMPA, Fla. (April 20, 2010) - The day when University of South Florida students and staff can enjoy new and improved space for exercise and dining is drawing closer. A groundbreaking ceremony April 28 at noon signals the beginning of construction on a new Campus Recreation Center Expansion and the Southeast Student Dining Facility. The location is in front of Campus Recreation and the Sun Dome.
The $14 million dollar project provides 51,050 square feet of space for exercise and fitness facilities along with a dining/food court, a student-athlete training table, meeting space and a commercial grade kitchen with catering amenities. Funds for this project were allocated through the Capital Improvement Trust Fund (CITF).
“The renovation of the current Campus Recreation Center has been very exciting for the students who are using it now,” said Eric Hunter, director of USF Campus Recreation and one of the people overseeing the project. “The fitness area square footage will be tripled in size and that is our greatest area of need. The addition of an indoor jogging track has also been highly sought for a number of years and will be utilized extensively. Overall, this expansion/renovation comes at a perfect time.”
The USF Division of Student Affairs, the Athletic Department, Campus Dining, which is part of the Campus Business Services division, and Student Government are collaborating on this project. The design/build team is made up of Biltmore Construction with architects Canerday, Belfsky + Arroyo and Ayers/ Saint/Gross. Construction is scheduled for completion July 2011.
The University of South Florida is one of the nation's top 63 public research universities and one of only 25 public research universities nationwide with very high research activity that is designated as community engaged by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. USF was awarded $380.4 million in research contracts and grants in FY 2008/2009. The university offers 232 degree programs at the undergraduate, graduate, specialist and doctoral levels, including the doctor of medicine. The USF System has a $1.8 billion annual budget, an annual economic impact of $3.2 billion, and serves more than 47,000 students on institutions/campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg, Sarasota-Manatee and Lakeland. USF is a member of the Big East Athletic Conference.