Lindenwood University plans to construct a 43,450-square-foot athletic building with an academic support center, new locker rooms for football and other Hunter Stadium sports, coaches’ offices, and a Hall of Fame Room. Officials hope the three-story building will be ready for the school’s first football game in 2012.
President James D. Evans said Lindenwood’s Board of Directors already has approved the construction of the building, which will be erected just outside of 6,000-seat Hunter Stadium over what is now Kirchner Plaza, behind the west end zone.
Evans and the board of directors want the opening of the building to coincide with Lindenwood’s entry into the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) in fall 2012. The MIAA is widely considered the toughest NCAA Division II conference in the nation.
“We have been told our facilities are among the finest in Division II,” said Evans. “This building will definitely be in keeping with that statement. It will help keep our institution competitive for years to come.”
Athletics Director John Creer said two of the most attractive features of the building are the locker room facilities and the spacious academic support center. Creer said the locker rooms will feature wood lockers and other elements not seen before at Lindenwood University.
“There will be a focus on branding and creating a feeling of comfort and pride,” said Creer. “This will enhance our winning tradition and help us bring in Division II’s top recruits.”
Creer said such components are essential when recruiting in today’s NCAA, particularly in such a strong conference as the MIAA.
The ground floor of the building will house home and visitor locker rooms and athletic training facilities. The nearly 3,000-square-foot academic success center will be on the second floor, along with locker rooms for men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s lacrosse, and field hockey. The third floor, which will overlook the bleachers and the scoreboard, will consist of coaches’ offices, a Hall of Fame Room, and meeting rooms.
Lindenwood hopes to break ground on the project in the spring. University officials say the building will cost in excess of $9 million, but no firm cost will be available for a couple of months.
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