The University of Houston System Board of Regents recently gave approval for the University of Houston-Victoria to move forward with its plans to build a student recreational center requested by its students, who are assessing themselves a student fee to fund part of the building.
With the board’s approval, UHV has begun searching for qualified architectural firms to design the new UHV Health & Wellness Center. The center will be built on the vacant lot on the southeast corner of Red River and Ben Wilson streets, near the new UHV University Commons students center and library and across Ben Wilson from Dairy Queen. The university hopes to have an architect chosen by February or March and plans to open the building by fall 2023.
“This building will be an exciting addition to UHV’s campus,” said Wayne Beran, UHV vice president for administration and finance. “A health and wellness center is considered standard on a typical college campus, and it’s something that our students have been requesting.”
UHV students living within 50 miles of the Victoria campus voted in December 2018 in favor of the student fee. Afterward, the fee was approved in spring 2019 by the UH System Board of Regents, the Texas Legislature and the governor.
Amenities included in the center will be a cardio area, weights area, indoor track, basketball court that can be modified for other sports such as volleyball or badminton, two multi-purpose rooms for fitness classes or activities such as cycling or yoga, and locker rooms.
The center will be open to UHV students in addition to faculty, staff, alumni and Victoria College students. Students from other universities who are home during the summer or holidays also will be able to use the center. There will be a membership fee for those who are not UHV students to use the facility.
“This is an exciting development because it will give students a convenient place to do something physical and relieve stress,” said Tiarah Figueroa, a UHV junior and president of the Student Government Association. “It can be hard when you spend so much time studying and working to find time to focus on health, but this building will give students a dedicated space for that.”
In addition, UHV plans to offer health services for students in the building along with two classrooms where students in health-related majors can take classes.
“When planning this building, we wanted to make sure that it will provide as many opportunities as possible for our students,” said Jay Lambert, UHV vice president for student affairs. “This building will greatly enhance campus and the student experience.”