Playing in the Park

From: Public Affairs

If you have driven down Port Republic Road recently you have noticed the massive amounts of earth being moved at the corner of Neff Avenue and Port Road. James Madison University is constructing University Park, an 85-acre facility that will be utilized for recreation and athletics.

University Recreation Director Eric Nickel said, "We are getting our backyard again." Nickel cited continued interest from students in recreation facilities, sports clubs and intramurals as reasons why the field space is so needed.

University Park will include tennis, sand volleyball and basketball courts as well as multipurpose fields, a disc golf course and a ropes course that will be run by UREC.

JMU's Division I men's and women's soccer, women's lacrosse, field hockey and women's track and field programs will also be housed at University Park.

The University Park entrance is through a gatehouse at the end of Devon Lane.

"We have been reducing field space on campus since 1981," said Nickel. "A facility like University Park has been on our top needs list for several years."

With the move of current athletic-only fields to University Park, UREC will take over managing field space on the university's east campus. The addition of this programmable space will further increase UREC's ability to offer intramurals and space for sports club practices.

University Park is projected to open in March 2012.

For detailed renderings of University Park see:
http://www.jmu.edu/recreation/Facilities/universitypark.html

http://www.jmusports.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=14400&KEY=&ATCLID=204947841

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December 28, 2010