BOSTON — Boston University (BU) is finishing work on its new 270,000-square-foot fitness and recreation facility. Slated to open April 1, the university hopes to use the center to recruit students, faculty and staff, and to re-establish relationships with alumni.
The estimated $90-million center includes an aquatics center with competition and recreation pools, a two-story cardiovascular fitness and weight training center, an indoor 1/8 mile elevated jogging track, a 35-foot high rock climbing wall, two gymnasiums with seven multipurpose courts, and racquetball and squash courts. The center also includes access to individualized fitness and nutrition counseling with full-service sports medicine and rehabilitation services provided by fitness professionals, a juice bar and lounge, and seven multipurpose rooms for classes such as dance, yoga, fencing and cardio fitness.
The center is part of BU's John Hancock Student Village, a $325-million project that not only includes the rec center but also the Harry Agganis Arena, a sports and entertainment facility with seating for up to 7,200 people and a student residence complex.
“Like many schools located in urban settings, BU has historically lacked a center of gravity or common meeting ground on its campus. As a result, the east and west sides of the campus were disconnected, and opportunities to maximize the ‘campus experience’ — which is so much of a school's appeal — were lost,” according to a statement from the school. “With this $325 million investment, BU is going to create a center of gravity along with innumerable opportunities to make the campus more relevant and meaningful to faculty, staff, students and alumni — all of which will enhance the university's competitive position in the academic arena.”
Full-time graduate and undergraduate students have full-membership benefits to the rec center, but in anticipation of the facility's opening, BU's Department of Physical Education, Recreation and Dance is offering three-month trial memberships to faculty, staff, alumni and part-time students at a discounted price.