Rebidding delays IMPE renovations

By Courtney Klemm

Intramural Physical Education building renovations will be further delayed due to the need to rebid the final phase for a lower priced contract, University officials said.

Jesse Clements, director of the University’s Division of Campus Recreation, said the budget appropriated for renovation of CRCE, IMPE and the addition of IMPE’s east wing was set for $77 million. Clements said the money set aside for the renovations not only includes the construction, but also the purchase of equipment, water lines and architectural fees.

Jayne DeLuce, associate director for the Division of Campus Recreation, said the bidding process works so that construction companies come and evaluate the renovation job and make a bid for how much they will do the job for. Given that the company meets all criteria for the job, the University then accepts the lowest bid, she said. The lowest bid that was offered to the University in the first bidding process for the final phase of IMPE renovations – the only part of the project that is being re-bidded – ran over the portion of the budget allotted to it.

“The first bid was not accepted by the University,” DeLuce said. “The second bid process is to take place in upcoming months, and if everything goes according to plan, then we’ll move forward.”

Gary Miller, associate director of operations for the Division of Campus Recreation, said he estimates IMPE’s renovation to take about two years. He said he feels the delays of both renovations will not have negative impacts on those that use the facilities.

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    “We tried to safeguard all activity places and make changes that impact the user the least,” Miller said.

    But Stephanie Schutzenhofer, junior in ALS, said the renovation has discouraged her from going to IMPE.

    “In the beginning of IMPE’s renovation, I wanted to go there less because of the fewer options, and it’s too crowded,” Schutzenhofer said. “Having most of the equipment in one room is very intimidating.”

    Meanwhile, Campus Recreation Center East (CRCE), which was to be renovated and scheduled to open in the first day of the spring semester, is now scheduled to open at the end of March. The University planned to close IMPE once CRCE opened, but officials have now decided to keep IMPE open for the rest of the semester.

    “We decided to complete the renovation of IMPE and CRCE in a two-phase project,” DeLuce said. “That way, students will always have a place to work out. Now we have a little bit of overlap, which just benefits the students.”

    Miller said the renovation team is looking forward to the opening of CRCE.

    “We’re really excited about getting such a quality facility on line for students to utilize,” he said.

    Mike Ryan, team leader and head fitness consultant for the Division of Campus Recreation, said students are eager for the opening of CRCE.

    “Everyone is really excited about the opening,” said Ryan, senior in LAS. “CRCE will provide so much more room as well as more to do than IMPE previously offered. I understand everyone is upset about the delays at IMPE and CRCE, but it will be well worth the wait.”