Director of Campus Recreation Bill Goa and his staff are working toward finalizing the concepts for the master plan to be implemented at UNC’s recreational facilities.
“We are still negotiating and working on several different options,” Goa said. “We are looking at possibilities at several shared spaces right now, and that would include reconfiguring Finley and Ehringhaus fields.”
Senior Associate Director for Campus Recreation Lauren Mangili said her role involves carefully designing plans based around the present and expected needs of the entire University community.
She said Campus Recreation’s implementations are specifically tailored to feedback received from students.
“The first phase of the plan included the renovations of Hooker Fields,” she said. “In addition, based on feedback from a facilities master plan survey, we found that students were interested in more space for functional training, so we converted a racquet ball court in Fetzer Hall to create the Tar Heel Training Center.”
Mangili said Campus Recreation has also been seeking to expand facilities because of how apparent it has become that clubs and organizations are interested in utilizing recreational space.
“Due to the numerous requests from student organizations, sport clubs, Campus Recreation programming and drop-in use, we are seeking ways to maximize space to meet the demands,” she said.
Goa said the process has been taking some time because of how the multiple purposes of the expansion require recognizing different programs, particularly at the Student Recreation Center.
Associate Athletic Director Mike Bunting said tailoring developments to the time-sensitive demands of the athletics department, Campus Recreation and the Department of Exercise and Sports Science has presented few difficulties so far.
“It has been a very collaborative process throughout and we have all made a point of keeping one another informed regarding the progress of our plans,” Bunting said. “We have also benefited from some natural alignment with our respective schedule needs, in that, in general, EXSS needs programming time primarily during the morning hours, Athletics in the afternoon and Rec in the evening.”
Goa said there may be additional renovations made at UNC’s aquatic facilities, which will become more evident with the master plan release.
“We’re hoping to publicize both Exercise and Sports Science and Campus Recreation’s master plan early next semester for the students, but we’ve had to do some more in-depth analysis of the aquatics facilities at Bowman Gray and Kessing,” he said. “One concept included putting a separate facility here at the SRC and turning Bowman Gray into a somewhat more leisurely pool with a slide and vortexes and shallow ends and whatnot.”
Goa said the innovations should be successful based on Campus Recreation’s recent accomplishments.
“I think the renovation we did at Hooker Fields was very well-received by all students with the new synthetic turf and lights,” he said. “Once we make way for more versatile space, students will be able to have more sport clubs, increased intramurals and space to just recreate on campus in a non-structured format, which according to our feasibility study is something that they really value.”