In 2012, students asked Rec Sports to consider forming a Master Plan. This plan looks forward 50 years to predict how the needs of students will grow and how facilities should be shaped around that. In March 2014, students approved the Master Plan for new recreational facilities through a referendum to the Associated Students of Madison ballot. More information about the master plan can be found here: https://recsports.wisc.edu/master-plan/
Near West Facilities Updating
The Near West Fields have fully updated as the first part of the Master Plan. The fields are now synthetic turf designed from recycled material and to minimize injuries due to improved G-max values. The lighting system efficiency improvements will save more than $20,000 over 10 years. Additionally, the system is designed to be maintenance free for more than 25 years.
South East Recreational Facilities UpdatingRec Sports closed the SERF in August 2017 to start work on building "The Nick". The Nick is the first major building project of the Rec Sports's Master Plan and second project overall after the Near West Fields. The name of the facility honors the late Albert “Ab” Nicholas, his wife Nancy, and the Nicholas family. Construction is expected to be completed early 2020.
Where did the money for the Nick come from?
A majority of the money came from donations to Rec Sports and Athletics. Under half the funding comes from student segregated fees increase of $108 through the year 2022 (approved by a 2014 referendum vote by students).
How long will student segregated fees fund this project?
Campus will use 30-year bonds to pay for Master Plan projects. Once the 30-year bond is paid, student segregated fees are expected to reduce respectively.
Why is the SERF being replaced before the Nat?
Knowing that the southeast neighborhood is the population center for UW-Madison, students overwhelmingly requested that the SERF be the priority for revamping the recreational future for campus. Once the new facility is completed, it will provide a much larger presence on the southeast side to accommodate the ever-increasing number of students and residence halls while construction of the new “Nat” facility begins. Additionally, University of Wisconsin Swimming and Diving competitions are currently hosted at the Nat, which will need to continue throughout the construction of the Nicholas Recreation center. Once the Nicholas Recreation Center is constructed, it will house the new home for Wisconsin Swimming and Diving.
Natatorium Facilities Updating
The next step in the Master Plan is to demolish and build a new facility in place of the Natatorium. The project just passed Wisconsin State Legislature's Joint Committee on Finance in June of 2019 allowing the plan to get underway. The project will provide space for a wellness center, a new gift-funded ice arena, basketball courts, indoor track, fitness space and racquetball courts as well as enhanced activity areas that will generate additional revenue. More information can be found here: https://cpd.fpm.wisc.edu/projects/gym-nat/
More information to come soon