A Pohl Recreation Center survey sent to thousands of university members last week is intended to help staff determine what renovations to make, center officials say.
“We emailed over 20,000 students,” said Britton Sherry, program director at the recreation center. “We attack it from all angles.”
The survey was sent to ‘stakeholders’ at the Chestnut Street building — university students, faculty and staff — so that participants could share their thoughts on what they think the recreation center needs.
“Once the survey is complete, we’ll have a much better idea of what our stakeholders want,” Sherry said.
The center hasn’t received any major updates since it opened in 2003, Sherry said. Minor renovations over the past 19 years include carpet changes and updated fitness equipment.
While the survey will likely generate more than 1,000 responses, Sherry said, recreation center representatives will also be holding focus group meetings. Meetings will include student leaders, such as members of the student government association and campus tour guides, as well as people considered “regulars” at the center.
“It’s supposed to be a 1.5 hour conversation about what they liked about recreational sports, what they don’t like about recreational sports, what they would like to change,” Sherry said. .
There are already ideas for improvements students will ask for, like a bigger weight room or longer open pool hours, Sherry said.
Music Performance Senior Carl Galarroza took the survey after seeing it on the recreation center’s official app. While he said a bigger weight room would be an ideal upgrade, Galarroza also hopes the center will provide better exercise class schedules for students.
“I wanted more variety on the times classes are offered,” Galarroza said. “I have classes sporadically throughout the day, but the classes I want are just when [my] classes are.
Sherry said that until the “blueprint” for the changes is determined, likely in August, it’s unclear how much the upgrades will cost. Depending on the results of the survey, the center could spend the majority of the funds working on a few large-scale projects or several smaller projects.
“We haven’t put limits on things, but it’s always about the money,” Sherry said.
The recreation center is funded primarily by tuition, with each student contributing $85.78 per semester as part of their tuition, according to the center’s website.
“We are talking about a couple [of] years before really starting any type of construction or formalized plan,” Sherry said. “What something costs today is not necessarily what it will cost when we start building in a year or two.”
Two representatives from Counsilman-Hunsaker & Associates Inc., an aquatic company listed as the facility’s aquatic designers, attended a focus group meeting to discuss with the students what they hope to see changed. Counsilman-Hunsaker Principal and Studio Manager Kevin Post and Studio Manager George Deines both attended college themselves, graduating in 2004 and 2000 respectively.
“Talking with the students is a good way to learn what needs fixing, but also what has already worked,” said Deines, who remembers voting as a student for the recreation center to start. first the construction.
Participating in focus groups will also help the company visualize the changes students are looking for in various outdoor spaces, including swimming pools, Post said.
“It felt like the pools we have now were kind of intimidating to non-swimmers, not inviting,” Post said. “The idea of having more than one social hangout area might be something more students will appreciate.”
Once the survey and focus groups are complete, the next step is compiling the information into a master plan by August, Post said. Once an established list of proposed changes is made, the recreation center will then re-contact the students for the final word.
“We’ll come back and have some ideas and a brainstorming session with what we can come up with,” Post said. “The real goal is to bring it back to the students to see if it’s taken care of.”
As of March 29, the survey is still active and can be viewed at unt.az1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_cIVjbp602ZtI27s.
North Texas Daily File Photo/Sarah Schreiner