Renovations to the Bell Center are set to begin in mid-October, a development which students and staff have said are long overdue, and well deserved, given the recent success of Trinity athletics.
“We are expanding out onto the main entry plaza,” said Seth Asbury, Associate Director of Athletics for Facilities and Event Management. “There will be a two story fitness center, with a weight room and cardio room along with a multipurpose studio.”
The campus master plan calls for reallocations of interior space within the current center.
“They’ll be taking out five of the racquetball courts and creating a new strength center,” Asbury said. “The center will have more free weights. It will be open to the Trinity community, but will primarily used by athletic teams.”
The renovations will benefit the entire Trinity community. The weight room, cardio room and fitness studio will have large windows. This is to welcome everyone, regardless of their familiarity with the equipment or current fitness level.
Renovations to the center will open rooms and studios for more than just athletics.
“The current dance studio gets used all day, from eight in the morning to 11 at night,” Asbury said. “The new studio opens up a new space for programming possibilities.”
The entire renovation process is anticipated to take between 12 and 14 months. During construction, the parking lot in front of the Bell Center will be blocked for the staging of construction equipment.
“I think that the parking lot closure can be difficult, it can make stuff harder. Especially for the first years, since it’s right on lower campus,” said Josh Cook, senior and member of the football team.
Despite the somewhat extensive nature of the renovations, Asbury remained confident that there would be minimal issues with students using the current facilities.
“We will be open the whole time during construction. The plan is for the main entrance to always be open, but if something happens, we will make arrangements so that another entrance is open,” Asbury said.
Students will likely have to wait about a year to use the full extent of the new Bell Center, but they are already getting excited about its completion.
“I’m really stoked about the renovations,” said Chris Garcia, sophomore and member of the baseball team. “Currently the weight room can get filled up pretty easily.”
The renovations will be extremely useful for the sports teams on campus.
“For the younger guys, I think [it’s] extremely exciting because you get the feel of a more prestigious university to match the success that the baseball team has had in recent years,” Garcia said.
Students can receive updates and follow construction progress by following the Bell Center on Twitter using @Bell_Center.