The Graduate & Professional Student Association (GPSA) recently hosted an open forum in the UNM Student Union Building to introduce the current proposal for a new state-of-the-art wellness center on campus. The informal session was an opportunity for the campus community to learn about the project, offer feedback and join the discussion about the future of health and wellness at UNM.

President Robert Frank said, “At UNM, we are committed to supporting the health and wellness of our campus community, and a planning effort of this scale requires input from the entire community.”

Students, staff and faculty rated nine different posters depicting features they wished to see included in the plans such as an indoor running track, a climbing wall, martial arts studio, weight training facility and a large leisure pool.

Student input has been an integral part of planning for this facility since 2007 when the project was originally conceived but shelved due to the downturn in the economy.

The cost for the project ranges from $58M - $71M, but future outreach sessions with students, faculty, staff and the administration will help determine the target budget. Possible funding sources include UNM bonds, student fees, public-private-partnerships and/or other funding sources that are to be determined.

The proposed site for the new building is just south of Johnson field in what is presently the A-Lot parking area. The site provides close proximity to Johnson Center and student housing, and ensures that the functions in the Johnson Center continue uninterrupted during the construction process.

Parking implications are currently under study relative to UNM and Middle Rio Grande Council of Governments transportation requirements and studies.

There is no set date as to when the finalized concept of the wellness center will be shown to the Board of Regents, but if approved before the fall of next year, the wellness center would open in the fall of 2018.

For more information, visit: Wellness Center.