The North Recreation Center opened to a line of students on Sunday eager to check out the newly constructed facility.
The four-story gym is part of the newly completed North Residential District, a $370 million construction project that included eight new residence halls and a new dining facility. The North Recreation Center stands on the grounds of the old North Commons dining hall, which was demolished in the winter.
The North Recreation Center wasn’t envisioned as a specific stand-alone gym, facility coordinator Kelly Shorter said, but rather part of the North Residential District as a whole.
Although data wasn’t available yet for students swiping into the facility with their BuckIDs, Shorter told The Lantern on Monday that the gym has been a popular destination for students, in the two days it has been open.
“So far, we’re seeing a lot (of students) from nearby residence halls,” Shorter said. “But we’re seeing a lot of staff come to check out the facility as well.”
Shorter also said that because of the equipment chosen for the facility, she expected students from across campus to use the space.
“We can literally throw stones at residence halls,” Shorter said. “But we were very intentional about the pieces (of equipment) brought in.”
The North Recreation Center is the only place on campus to have equipment from Humansport, a line of workout machines from Star Trac, and Synergy 360, from Life Fitness.
Bryan French, a fourth-year in neuroscience, said as he was leaving his workout on Monday that he went to the North Recreation Center because it was conveniently located.
“I also just wanted to check it out,” French said. “The lineup (of equipment) is pretty unique.”
Luke Willman, a fourth-year in civil engineering, said he liked the setup, although he heard some people were confused about the layout.
“Some people take issue with the (four-floor) set up,” Willman said, adding that it could make the facility seem cramped at times, since it differed from a more typical, spread-out layout.
Despite some similar criticisms, Mark Firkins, a fourth-year in microbiology said he enjoyed his workout. He hoped the new facility would ease the crowds in other gyms on campus.
“Hopefully it’ll draw some people away (from other recreational facilities),” said Firkins, who said he worked out mostly at the RPAC and Jesse Owens South last year.
The North Recreation Center is open from 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. on Sundays, 6 a.m. to 1 a.m. on weekdays, and 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturdays.