The Health, Physical Education and Recreation Building (HPER) was built in 1972 and the Nelson Field House was built in 1939. Some improvements have been made over the years to each of these facilities to accommodate a variety of recreational activities and academic objectives, as well as to meet the needs of the other major tenants: the Athletics Department, the HPER Department, and Campus Health and Wellness. However, it was clear that USU’s recreational facilities had become outdated, had fallen behind the standards and trends of its peer institutions, and were inadequate to meet the growing demand for indoor recreation space on campus and support the healthy lifestyle activities of USU students. In addition, student usage statistics of the current recreational facilities clearly demonstrated the growing demand for these types of facilities at USU. For example, the Nelson Field House had seen its student usage increase by 71% from 2008 to 2011.
The USU Student Recreation & Wellness Center (SRWC) would address the recreational needs of Logan Campus students including: open recreation use; Intramural Sports, Club Sports, non-credit bearing fitness and wellness classes, campus organizations, university special events, and general student use through a coordinated and structured use policy. The SRWC would support year-round activities, unrestricted by inclement weather conditions.
The SRWC would also enhance the sense of community for students on the Logan Campus and will provide expanded opportunities for student recreation and engagement. This new facility would support USU’s new student recruitment outcomes and contribute to higher retention and graduation rates.
Responses to student surveys revealed that USU students recognize the need for a new student recreation center and were supportive of building it:
“USU students really just need a place to hang out and relax with friends; I was actually surprised to find out that there wasn't a place like that on campus when I transferred last year. At USC we had the Trojan Corner which was just that, a place for students to unwind and simply have fun with friends.”
“I would love a place on campus for students to get away from the schoolwork and just have fun. It seems like every other school has a place like this.”
“I would like there to be a climbing wall, bouldering cave, indoor soccer court with hockey style walls, a cardio room with TV's on the equipment which you can plug headphones into, individual rooms where fitness classes can be held, air conditioning and heating that works, basketball courts, indoor track…”
“This rec. center sounds so amazing! This would top off the Utah State experience if we got a new rec. center!”