SUNY Buffalo State will celebrate the completion of $25.7 million in renovations to Houston Gymnasium with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, October 17, at 3:00 p.m.
Members of Buffalo State’s College Council, state and local elected officials, faculty, staff, students, and supporters of Buffalo State are expected to attend. A reception will follow.
The 54-year-old building located on the west side of campus received an extensive makeover as part of a roster of nearly $350 million in new construction and renovation projects through 2017 that will transform the Buffalo State campus.
Other campus projects include the new $36.5 million Technology Building, which opened in 2013, and ongoing renovations to Caudell Hall, the Science and Mathematics Complex, and Scajaquada Tower 1, the second residence hall in a series of four that will offer students updated public space and modern suites.
"The impressive renovations to Houston Gym demonstrate how Buffalo State continues to provide cutting-edge facilities for our students while still keeping tuition affordable," said Buffalo State President Katherine S. Conway-Turner. "At Buffalo State, we aim to serve the holistic needs of our students and that means offering excellent academic, residential, and sports and fitness facilities."
Clough Harbour & Associates served as architects and engineers to the Houston Gym project that was overseen by Turner Construction and carried out by Javen Construction beginning in fall 2012.
"One of the primary changes was to the Fitness Center. It was moved from the basement to the upper level, which gives it natural light and twice the space,” said Steve Shaffer, Buffalo State’s facilities planning manager. "Another big change was creating dedicated locker rooms for each sport. Previously, there were just two general locker rooms—one for men and one for women."
Additionally, the college’s Health and Wellness Department, which trains undergraduates for health and wellness careers in business, industry, nonprofit agencies, government, and health care organizations, received new office space, a research lab, and classroom space.
Other renovations included refurbishing and deepening the swimming pool, expanding the training room, creating student lounge space, and replacing outdated mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems. Overall, the renovations have resulted in a modern, aesthetically pleasing facility that will serve more students and help in the recruitment of prospective students.
"Houston Gym's renovation will enable us to meet the needs of today’s students looking to participate in intercollegiate athletics, recreation, and intramurals," said Jerry Boyes, director of Buffalo State Intercollegiate Athletics. "The building now provides that 'wow factor' that parents and prospective students are looking for when choosing a college. It is a first-class facility for our student-athletes to train and practice in and allows us to improve and expand our recreation and intramural offerings, which will positively impact student engagement and retention."
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