The large space where people used to swim has remained vacant, though it is visible to all who use the Recreation-Fitness Center. In a recent interview, Bill Born, vice president for student life, revealed what some of the new plans for the space might look like.
“Right now, we're trying to work out the logistics,” Born said.
He said a recent survey that the administration used to collect information from students, staff and community members helped provide feedback on how the space might be used to “meet people's expectations and needs” as best as they can.
Born said some themes from the survey included a varsity level athletic weight room, a multipurpose space that could be used for cardiovascular exercises, and “a better space for physical education courses.”
There are likely to be some challenges in renovating the space for these purposes. “The lighting isn't great,” said Born. “We also need to put in temporary structures like walls in order to separate the different possible uses. The college will likely be looking for funding for these renovations in the coming months."
Born pointed to communication with Mayor Allan Kauffman about the possibility of a building an off-campus community pool for local schools, Goshen College, Greencroft retirement center and other community members. “We've found that it doesn't make sense to fund multiple pools for different demographics,” Born said.
In the meantime, however, the empty pool space has left a void in the RFC.
“We are confident that the new space will serve the campus community better than the pool did,” Born said. “I think most students agreed that while the pool provided an aesthetic advantage for the campus, it wasn't really being used heavily enough to justify the costs.”
Born said we can expect more concrete information about the pool space by the beginning of January.