Rec Center upgrades should work out

Spring semester is drawing to a close and warm weather is almost upon us. For some of us this means getting out of town, but for the rest of us it simply means enjoying Portland in the summer.

The Campus Recreation Center at Portland State will undertake a transformation, with major construction and remodeling taking place. While this means the Rec Center will be covered in a cloud of dust and noise for the next three months, the end result will be a far better center for individuals to get their fitness on.

This is a project the Rec Center wanted to undertake five years ago, but due to lack of funding it was never completed.

“The bottom line is that we’re concerned about it being a welcoming environment,” explained Todd Bauch, Associate Director of Operations for the Campus Rec Center. “The weight room now is super crowded to the point where people are deciding not to workout.”

Currently, the fourth floor has a huge open space that overlooks the floors below and isn’t being used to its potential. The main project will revolve around expanding over that space, creating an open floor plan. From there, cardio and weight room equipment will be able to be dispersed evenly, granting individuals more freedom when working out.

While there isn’t a plan to bring in much more new equipment, there are a few items in high demand that the Rec Center is working to accommodate into the new space, such as kettlebells, a TRX wall and a larger functional fitness area where people can do exercises like sit-ups and push-ups.

Because the floor plan will be more open, this will enable views of Mt. Hood from more places on the fourth floor, including a glimpse of it as you run around the track. As Bauch put it, “We’ll be able to bring the outside back inside.”

The personal training program, which has become extremely popular over the years, is also looking at an upgrade. Right now trainers are forced to meet with clients in inconvenient settings to discuss and plan workouts. Erin Bransford, Fitness and Health Promotions coordinator for Campus Rec, is concerned about creating a welcoming environment.

“We want our personal training program to reflect professionalism, as well as flexibility, for the client and the trainers,” she said.

There are plans to build two rooms designated specifically for the personal training program. One room will be used for fitness assessments, where the trainer will be able to gauge their clients’ needs, and a larger room next to it will be used for meetings and warm-ups before full workouts begin.

“This room will also be where we store client files,” Bransford said. “We’re looking at software upgrades that will make life much easier for the clients and the trainers alike.”

During construction, equipment will have to be moved around to accommodate the remodel. From June 15–17, the center will partially shut down so that equipment can be moved out of the construction areas. The third and fourth floors will be closed to move equipment, but Campus Rec administration, member services, pool and locker room operations will stay open.

From there, full-on construction will take place for the rest of the summer.

“It’ll have a little bit of impact on the stuff that’s happening this summer, but by and large we’re going to try and keep everything as operational as possible,” Bauch said.

Most of the equipment will be moved onto two of the basketball courts, and most of the group fitness classes will take place in one of the classrooms on the second floor of the Rec Center. Spin classes will take place on an outdoor deck on the third floor. For safety purposes, the locker rooms will be closed from June 25–July 1 until 3:30 p.m., but the pool and Jacuzzi will be open all summer long. While the locker room is closed, members are able use the universal changing rooms or obtain a pass from member services to use the showers at Peter W. Stott Center.

“We’re excited about this,” Bauch said. “There will be a lot of dust around here for a while, but once the dust settles we’ll have a much better place.”

The project is estimated to take about three months to complete.

Updated May 28 at 3:13 p.m.

Due to a reporting error, information in “Campus Rec upgrades should work out” was inaccurate. The June 15–17 closure is a partial facility closure, and the entire third and fourth floors will be closed to move equipment. Other operations will remain open. During June 25–July 1, the locker rooms will be closed until 3:30 p.m., not all day. While closed, members are able to use the universal changing rooms or obtain a pass from Member Services to use the showers at the Peter W. Stott Center. The Vanguard regrets the error.