Feature Article - June 2010
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A Look at Trends in Colleges & Universities

Buildings & Growth

Respondents from colleges and universities were less likely than many others to have plans for construction. That said, more than half (56.1 percent) did have plans for construction over the next three years. (See Figure 47.) This is a slight decrease from last year, when 57.8 percent had plans for construction. As in most other facilities, these were dominated by renovation plans. More than a third (34.7 percent) of college/university respondents were planning renovations to their existing facilities, a slight drop from 2009, when 35.1 percent were planning renovations. Just under a quarter were planning new facilities (24.6 percent) or additions to their existing facilities (24.3 percent).

College and university respondents who were planning construction indicated that the average amount planned was $8,568,000, a drop of 13.1 percent from last year, but still 17.7 percent higher than the average amount planned by college respondents in 2008 ($7,278,900). And, college respondents are the biggest spenders when it comes to construction, among all facility types. Their average amount planned is 92.1 percent higher than the across-the-board average.

Among college and university respondents, the top 10 features included in their facilities sheds light on the types of facilities typically included on college campuses:

  1. Indoor sports courts for basketball, volleyball, racquet sports, etc. (Included by 85 percent of college/university respondents who indicated their facilities included features of any kind)
  2. Locker rooms (84.4 percent)
  3. Fitness centers (83.4 percent)
  4. Classrooms/meeting rooms (71.9 percent)
  5. Bleachers and seating (68.4 percent)
  6. Exercise studio rooms (67.8 percent)
  7. Natural turf sports fields (66.9 percent)
  8. Outdoor sports courts (53.8 percent)
  9. Indoor aquatic facilities (48.9 percent)
  10. Concession areas (47.5 percent)

When it comes to expanding their offerings at their facilities, 37 percent of respondents from colleges and universities indicated that they have plans to add more features over the next three years. The most commonly selected additions include: synthetic turf sports fields; locker rooms; exercise studio rooms; bleachers and seating; fitness centers; classrooms and meeting rooms; indoor sports courts; indoor running tracks; concession areas; and climbing walls. Interestingly, when you combine these features together, you get the perfect picture of a fully featured campus recreation center.