CSU's Student Recreation Center Wins National Recognition

Student Recreation Center at twilight.COLUMBUS, Ga. — Columbus State University's new Student Recreation Center has been recognized with an Outstanding Sports Facilities Award by the nation's leading campus recreation organization.

Rick Cravens, director of Campus Recreation at Columbus State, accepted the award at the annual National Intramural Recreational Sports Administration conference in April. A representative of the firm that designed CSU's center, St. Louis-based Hastings+Chivetta Architects, Inc., also was on hand at the Las Vegas conference to accept the award, which focuses on architectural design, functionality and how well the facility meets its intended purpose.

"What makes me so proud is that there's no school of our size that has anything like this," Cravens said of CSU's 106,000-square foot center. "We're truly blessed. I keep telling my staff we can't take it for granted."

Columbus State opened the doors of its $26 million center in January 2011. Since then, representatives of about10 universities have visited to get ideas about what to include in their new campus recreation centers, Cravens said.

Because Georgia law prohibits using taxpayer money to fund a non-academic building, CSU's  Student Government Association passed two referendums increasing student activity fees to fund the Student Recreation Center. The center now also serves faculty, staff, alumni and their spouses, who pay membership fees.

Among the center's features:

  • An aquatic center that encompasses a five-lane, 25-yard lap pool, a "lazy river," therapy pool area and adjacent sauna.
  • Two movement rooms (overlooking the pool) equipped with high-tech sound systems, where fitness classes such as Zumba, cycling and yoga are taught.
  • A unique 30-foot climbing wall and an adjacent "bouldering" area.
  • More than two-dozen high-end weight machines displayed before a three-story glass front with a view of the 4,200-seat Frank G. Lumpkin Center, also designed by Hastings+Chivetta.
  • A separate "quiet" fitness area with another dozen weight machines.
  • A "cardio deck," featuring top-of-the-line treadmills, stationary bikes, elliptical machines, rowers and steppers – most equipped with monitors that can display workout information or video students might access via iPod or similar device.
  • Two racquetball courts.
  • And a walking-running track

Founded in 1950, NIRSA now serves nearly 4,000 campus recreation professionals, students and businesses that work with an estimated 7.7 million students.

For more on CSU's Student Recreation Center and related programs at Columbus State, visit http://ColumbusState.edu/campusrec.

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