The Rec and Wellness Center has already shown it will be a major center for student activity on the Hayward Campus.
Cal State East Bay's Recreation and Wellness Center, approved by the university's student body in 2007, received a grand opening Jan. 11 celebrated by hundreds of members of the campus community who toasted the new facility with cheers, healthy snacks and cups of Jamba Juice.
To coincide with the numeric date – 1/11/11 – of the grand opening, the festivities began at 11:11 a.m., with the ribbon cutting taking place at 1:11 p.m.
The grand opening allowed students, faculty, staff and administrators to preview the 54,000- square foot R.A.W. (Rec and Wellness) Center. It didn't take long for the center and its staff to win positive reviews from those who checked it out. R.A.W. stands near the intersection of South Loop and Harder roads, across the street from the Pioneer Heights student apartments.
Currently enrolled students qualify for a complimentary membership each quarter. An introductory membership rate of $65 will be available for winter quarter for faculty, staff, retirees and alumni; the regular rate of $85 per quarter for employees will go into effect in the spring.
“We realize it’s always a challenge for people to commit the money and energy” to a gym membership, said Krista Smith, director of the R.A.W. Center.
The R.A.W. Center has a multi-court gymnasium; elevated jogging track; fitness center; multipurpose fitness and activity rooms for aerobics, martial arts and dancing; locker rooms; juice bar; and administrative offices. Williams said the center will provide intramural sports such as basketball, volleyball and badminton, as well as fitness programs such as weight training, with free weights and weight machines on hand.
An outdoor adventure center will allow students to get information on individual and group activities such as kayaking, hiking and camping throughout the Bay Area and around Northern California. Outdoor equipment for these activities also will be available through this department.
The center will be notable not only for what it houses but how it has been built to protect the environment and preserve natural resources. Among the sustainable building design features are a green roof and cool roof systems, water efficient landscaping with reclaimed water for irrigation and optimized access for daylight and views to the exterior. A specially designed wall that absorbs heat, combined with natural ventilation features, will help keep the building naturally cool during the day. The large proportion of glass that will allow light in during the day will help heat the facility at night.
Building of the $32 million facility has been financed through student fees established in consultation with the Associated Students Inc. and other student groups. The ASI began enlisting support for construction of a student recreation and wellness center in early 2007, and hired a design company to perform a feasibility study. A student survey that year drew more than 1,100 responses from the campus community, with more than 1,000 coming from students. Additional feedback for the project was provided at a series of campus forums.