The University of Colorado, Colorado Springs (UCCS), is expanding its Recreation and Wellness center in a $16.3 million project scheduled for completion in October. Currently 54,000 square feet, the renovated center will be nearly twice that size and will include additional cardio and strength equipment, multipurpose studios for group exercise, basketball courts, new men’s and women’s locker rooms, two gender-neutral restrooms, office space, a social gathering area, and a welcome center.

In addition, the facility will house a student health center and counseling center. According to UCCS officials, the facility will be the first in the nation to pull together campus recreation, a student health center, a counseling center, and elements of nutrition education under the same roof.

“More and more, especially at universities, we’re seeing a trend toward comprehensive centers that include athletic facilities, general exercise areas, and various health and recreation services,” said Eric Willin, Chief Operating Officer, at EZFacility, a fitness center management software developer in Woodbury, New York. “Bringing all these functions together makes sense, and it provides an exciting dynamic surrounding health and wellness efforts on campus.”

The existing center has been lauded for its LEED gold rating, achieved through an environmentally friendly design and construction. The expanded center also has been designed to meet LEED gold standards. Its green elements include water-efficient landscaping, on-site storm water treatment, and use of local and recycled materials in construction. An on-site touchscreen shows real-time measurements of building energy use.