SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Sacramento State’s planned Recreation, Wellness and Event Center is facing monetary setbacks and will not be built as originally presented to students, according to University President Alexander Gonzalez.
Gonzalez appeared before a meeting of the Associated Students Inc. on Wednesday to formally correct information in an article appearing in The State Hornet that cited misleading information about the center.
The article, which contained information from sources who had been incorrectly informed, has been causing confusion among students on campus. Original plans for the center called for a bowling alley, a theater, and exercise facilities, but now it is uncertain whether or not all the student body’s requests can be accommodated.
“Now is when the real planning and the work with the architects really begins,” Gonzalez said. The architects hired by the school will work together to decide what is realistic and what the school can’t afford to build. Gonzalez, meanwhile, assured ASI that they will be informed of the decisions made on the project every step of the way.
While Gonzalez kept his word to the student body by raising a promised $25 million in outside funds, there are still more stages to be completed before the vision becomes a reality.
“It hasn’t been approved yet by the Board of Trustees,” Gonzalez said of the building plans. “The only thing that’s been approved has been the conceptual drawing of where we would put (it).”
The major deciding factor behind the scaling down of plans is cost, according to Gonzalez. He likened the plans for the center to the new parking structure that is currently being built. The structure, Parking Structure III, originally was designed to have 3,200 spaces available. However “because of the cost of construction, we have cut that down to about 3,100 spaces,” Gonzalez said.
While none of the plans have been solidified, Gonzalez confirms that the plans for the center will include as many of the requested extravagances as possible. “The Health, Wellness and Event Center is an integral piece of what we’re going to be doing at one building,” he acknowledged. “What’s causing the confusion is the arena. The arena is going to be a separate unit by itself … and that will have to be a public-private partnership.”
The idea of a public-private partnership is necessary, because even with the money already raised and the student fee increase which begins this summer, the school does not have enough money to build the desired complex, said Gonzalez.
“The idea is to have a place where you can have not only athletic events, but performances that would really not be under our control, but would be under the folks who would put in the money to build it,” Gonzalez explained. Those contributors of money then “in a sense, would get a lease of the land from us.”
Ultimately, Gonzalez stressed that he wants to building a place Sacramento State’s students to have as their own.
“We’re trying to serve students here and make it a place where students can be on the campus,” Gonzalez said.