New Student Recreation Center

Student (Lobo) Recreation Center (SRC) Information Sheet

UNM Johnson Center

  • Shared by four departments:
  • College of Education, Health Education and Sport Studies
  • UNM Athletic Department
  • Human Resources, Employee Health Promotion Program
  • Student Affairs Recreational Services
  • Confusing and difficult to navigate
  • Outdated
  • Needs major repair and maintenance
  • Fallen behind the standards and trends of peer universities

What “today’s” students said about improving the Rec Center
3,263 students surveyed in Spring 2009 produced the following results regarding what they believe the significant/moderate impacts of an improved Rec Center at UNM would be:

  • 86% felt it would increase student employment opportunities.
  • 89% felt it would reduce overcrowding in the current fitness facility.
  • 72% and 68% felt it would attract and retain more students at UNM.
  • 83% and 91% felt it would make UNM more desirable and improve the quality of campus and community life at UNM.
  • 91% and 85% felt it would increase the time that students spend on campus and make living on campus more desirable.
  • 92% and 93% felt it would help with reducing stress and providing healthy lifestyles options.

Benefits of Student Recreation

  • Improves emotional well-being
  • Reduces stress
  • Improves happiness & self-confidence
  • Builds character
  • Students feel like part of the college community
  • Improves interaction with diverse sets of people
  • An important part of college social life
  • Teaches team building skills, and is an important part of the learning experience.
  • Intramural sports appear to have a positive effect on student retention, degree aspirations and satisfaction with the college experience and are the strongest in-college activity predictor of overall college satisfaction (Downs, 2003, 100).

Overview and Proposal to meet “Today’s” Student Needs

Student Affairs, ASUNM and GPSA have been researching and considering the possibility of constructing and operating a new Student Recreation (and Wellness) Center at UNM.  Research has included visiting peer University Rec centers, and conducting a survey regarding what “today’s” student wants.
Recently, a two-day charette was held by the Architects which further developed a preliminary plan and design for this new SRC. During this charette, focus groups were held in which students gave feedback on the ideas and how open they were to increasing student fees to pay for this new facility. The design shows a new three-story building that will attach to Johnson Center with a bridge. It would include a climbing wall, indoor track, cardio and weight rooms, multi-purpose rooms for playing indoor soccer and hockey, multi-purpose group fitness rooms, and new locker rooms.
The initial planning and assessment has created an approximate cost of $52 million to build this facility and a realistic financial estimate of construction and operational costs pro-forma is being developed. In order to continue with the planning and development, it is imperative that a revenue source be secured for these costs. The current economic environment, planning and construction costs are a positive incentive to continue the facilitation of this project now. The longer the project is delayed, the more expensive it will become. 

This is an opportunity to create and develop an inviting, interactive and vital campus community environment for the students in coordination with additional student housing and residence life that is also being expanded and planned in collaboration with the overall campus master plan.



Artist rendering watercolor imageArtist rendering of what the center could look like

Recreation center now

Recreation Center What it could be

This could be your new Recreation Center

New Rec Center weight room

New Rec Center rock wall one


As we look into moving this project forward we would like to get input from students on what they would like to see in a new new recreation center. The form below can be used to provide us with valuable input, please take a minute to fill it out and submit it to our staff. Thank your for your time.