Campus Projects: Football Operation Center Takes Shape, Extensive Updates to Campus, including Housing
While students and their academic projects may take a much-deserved break over the summer, campus construction projects just keep on rolling! Anderson University has many current projects in the works, all designed to make campus a more innovative and welcoming place for new, current and prospective students alike.
Upgrades At Abney
Home to Trojan Basketball and Volleyball, Abney Athletic Center is the hub for indoor sports at Anderson University.
“For the last five years or so, we've kind of redone that Abney Athletic Center,” said Vice President of Athletics Bert Epting. “That includes a new floor, new paint, new lights, and we just completed a new sound system.”
Epting is thrilled about the renovations and believes they’ll be a great addition for the volleyball team this fall and the basketball teams in the winter and spring.
Nature and Nurture
A great expansion to the meal options last year was Troy’s Food Truck, and this year, students will have the option of an additional food truck.
“We’ll have another food truck stationed at the Athletic Campus this year,” said Capital Projects Coordinator Tina Beers. “It’s going to be part of our civilian outdoor eating area that's opening up this fall. It will be right as you leave the facilities office that will actually be a different area for students to have food.”
Beers is excited for students to have more variety in what food is available to them and thinks the location will be a great way to serve large portions of the student body.
“I think having another meal option out here will be great for athletes after practice as well as students in classes in the Athletic Campus buildings. It will also be closer to College Parke and Heritage Townhomes, so those students will be able to come here and not have to go all the way to campus if they'd like to,” said Beers.
But food isn’t the only thing that’s being expanded over the summer.
“At the end of July, we'll also start working on the Rocky River Nature Trail,” said Beers. “We're doing extensions on the nature trail platforms. We have one phase one and phase two scheduled, so as long as phase one goes well, that will extend the viewing area for the classrooms as well as different camps and people in the community. It's a really awesome project.”
Several buildings around campus are also receiving upgrades and expansions.
“Right now, we’re working on the College Parke Townhouses Phase Two, which will be open this fall for housing,” said Beers.
Phase Two (aka College Parke West) is an additional space to the College Parke Townhouses located behind the existing units. It will offer 96 additional beds and more space to house upperclassmen.
“We also have some office renovations and reshuffling going on,” said Beers. “We are renovating Watkins lab 208 and clearing space for eight or so new offices. We’ve just moved a lot of the offices for faculty and staff, especially with the four new offices we just got at Chiquola downtown.”
The Athletic Campus
Since last year, the Athletic Campus has seen the greatest amount of growth and development.
“We finished our beautiful track and field spaces about a year ago,” said Epting. “Since then, we’ve hosted six track meets and between 5,000-8,000 student-athletes, so that’s pretty neat.”
“We’ve also finished building out our strength and conditioning space, which has 10,000 square feet of turf and 10,000 square feet of space for strength and conditioning equipment.”
The Future of Trojan Football
However, the central focus of project development this summer is the Trojan Football Operation Center.
“It’s exciting to see it transform day-by-day,” said Beers. “It's just a huge impact, both to the school as well as the community. And it's a beauty.”
The Operation Center will function as a multi-purpose facility. It’s 43,622 square feet and will contain football offices, media rooms and locker rooms for home and visiting teams for both football and softball. It will also have new spaces for strength and conditioning, athletic training, sports medicine as well as classrooms.
“It'll be done sometime in early August,” said Epting. “And then we'll start fully utilizing those spaces probably sometime in September. We’re really excited about having more space and everything this center will offer.”
Epting believes that football will have a great impact on Anderson University and serve to bring the community together like never before.
“You think about the 125 men that will be here competing and you think about the coaches and the families and about Saturdays in the fall and being able to go to a Trojan football game. I think it really will bring a different feel for our entire university. I think you have more students who want to come because we have football.”
There are lots of projects to keep up with at Anderson, but the work never stops. The University is always changing and always improving, doing its best to provide for its ever-growing student body.
“Ultimately, we're just putting one foot in front of the other,” said Epting. “We're trying to do the best we can with what God gives us and our resources and those who come alongside us.”