David Mair, Staff Writer
Athletic and exercise facilities are in the midst of being made anew across campus so students may live a healthier lifestyle at college.
With Pacific Lutheran University turning the big 1-2-5 this year, many of the buildings on campus are simply quite old, specifically the athletic facilities.
Whether it is sports fields for teams trying to perform at their best or students wanting to stay in shape, facilities are in need of an update.
A lack of funding is the main factor that keeps the buildings from being updated, Athletic Director Laurie Turner points out. The majority of facility projects are funded by donors and fundraisers.
Since money is a large barrier against bigger and brighter facilities, the key component is lots of “mini master plans” explained Turner.
“We have a plan,” said Turner. “It’s a laundry list and as money comes in we’ll tackle each plan.”
Over the past five years many of these plans have been addressed, but there is still a lot of work to be done.
The pool reopened in 2012 with renovations to the roof after a snowstorm destroyed it. During 2011, the track was resurfaced with synthetic surface. In 2011, the six tennis courts were repainted and resurfaced. East Field, the synthetic all purpose field, was constructed in August of 2012.
But athletic areas are not the only projects on the list. A lot of time has been invested in planning for a new Names Fitness Center said Turner.
“Maybe 30 years ago [fitness] wouldn’t be as important, but now there’s a greater focus on exercise and health,” Turner said. “We’re working to accommodate students being both responsible and responsive to students.”
Though a number of facilities have been improved, there are still more “master plans” ready to be tackled. PLU is continually “looking to meet the needs of students,” said Turner.
Names Fitness Center could possibly get a makeover soon, in addition to adding bathrooms adjacent to the new turf field. Olson Gym is also in the running for the installation of a new television screen in the lobby of the building.
While money is the main wall to climb in this whole process, Turner said her goal is to help “create an active environment, here on campus.” ◼︎