The number of students living in university housing has grown from 9% in 1999 to more than 25% of U of L’s enrollment of 22,000-plus. And there’s more construction to come, much more. To accommodate all that growth, a $38 million student recreation center is in the works to provide U of L students with more leisurely activities when they’re not hitting the books.
According to Broken Sidewalk:
Plans call for constructing a 128,000-square-foot Student Recreational Center (SRC) adjacent to Kurtz and Minardi halls on Fourth Street south of Cardinal Boulevard. Included in the program are exercise and aerobic facilities, a gymnasium with six courts for basketball and volleyball, a flex court for indoor soccer and hockey, racquetball courts, a fitness lab, gaming area, classrooms, and support areas. Behind Kurtz Hall, an artificial turf field called the Great Lawn surrounded by grassy pyramids for spectators can handle outdoor sports.
Designed by Omni Architects with Carman Landscape Architects, U of L hopes the building will achieve LEED Gold certification for sustainability. According to the university, the SRC will be the first UL building to utilize geothermal heating and cooling.
The site is currently a parking lot, the loss of which would inconvenience many students. Possibly some of the old industrial facilities in the area, some of which appear to be abandoned, can be converted to parking.