Athletics News |
May 12, 2006
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Grand Opening Photo Gallery
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CINCINNATI, Ohio -- The University of Cincinnati's athletics fortunes will become quite a bit brighter and richer with the upcoming opening of the Richard E. Lindner Athletics Center.
The eight-story structure will be dedicated on Friday, May 12, with an invitation-only ceremony that will begin at 6 p.m. The public will get its first viewing of the building, located between Nippert Stadium and Fifth Third Arena, on Saturday, May 13, with self-guided open house tours taking place from 1-4 p.m.
The new Lindner Athletics Center is the crown jewel of the Richard E. Lindner Varsity Village, the total upgrade of UC's athletics facilities that began in 2003. The term "village" was adopted because the concept provides ease of use and access to support services of UC's intercollegiate program, similar to that of a small town. The facilities are named in recognition of Cincinnati philanthropist and businessman Richard E. Lindner, who gave the founding gift to get the project started.
The Lindner Athletics Center will house offices for all of UC's coaches and athletics administrators. There is reception and meeting space for all programs, along with expanded locker room facilities. A new practice gym will ease the scheduling of Fifth Third Arena.
The Nancy Hamant Academics Center comprises one entire floor of the building and provides study facilities and resources for UC's 530-plus student-athletes, including over 80 computer stations. It is named in honor of UC's long-time faculty athletics representative.
A new sports medicine training/rehabilitation suite will open in the new building, centralizing all of the athletic training needs of UC's 18 varsity sports.
The Lindner Athletics Center is more than just athletics. The university's Student Health Services will move into new quarters in the facility, which will also house the Faculty Club and restaurant. The campus will also benefit from the availability of a 335-seat auditorium.
The ground floor will feature the George and Helen Smith Museum detailing the history of the university and the UC athletics program. Sports histories will be portrayed in graphic murals and on video screens. Terminals in the Jack Twyman Traditions Lounge will enable former student-athletes and their families look up photos and records of their participation. A five-story tall trophy case houses the Bearcats' championship memorabilia.
New landscaping around the Lindner Athletics Center, and to the east of Nippert Stadium, has occurred. A major walkway, O'Varsity Way, leads visitors to the new building. The statue of UC basketball great Oscar Robertson has been relocated to the Victory Plaza at the end of the walkway. The Raymond D. Sheakley Lawn, adjacent to Victory Plaza, provides a gathering and activities place for UC students.
The building was designed by signature architect Bernard Tschumi. UC graduate Eva Maddox (DAAP '66) orchestrated the design of the museum.
Other projects which have been completed and opened include the UC Marge Schott Stadium, a new 3,085-seat facility that has already been acclaimed as the top baseball facility in the BIG EAST Conference; the Ben and Dee Gettler Soccer and Track Stadium, a total renovation of the facilities for those sports; and Keating Aquatic Center, an expansive swimming and diving facility that is part of the adjacent Student Recreation Center. The project also included renovation of Nippert Stadium, featuring a new installation of the FieldTurf playing surface, an upgrade of over 8,000 seats, and the construction of new permanent seating in the north end zone, which also included game-day locker rooms.
UC's tennis team began practicing and playing in the new Tennis Center, which will be completed this spring. Also underway is the renovation of space in Fifth Third Arena, which will expand UC's strength training center and equipment and laundry facilities and provide new dressing facilities for the football team.