DePaul University


Recreation Center & Athletic Facilities Strategic Plan, Ff&e Support, Business Planning, And Design Review

DePaul University was approaching its centennial and wanted a new student recreation center to be the cornerstone of the celebration. The school had retained B&D previously to provide a comprehensive market, program, financing, and land use study and this new student recreation center was part of that original plan. We were subsequently tasked to work within the master plan for the Lincoln Park campus to address the needs of the proposed facility’s primary constituents: campus intramurals, physical education, and athletics. Our work included interviews with trustees and senior administration to determine the school’s values and mission and uncover the major drivers of the project. We produced a financing and implementation plan that allowed the school to build a recreation and fitness center, 1,500 beds of student housing, a new athletic center, and a student center within five years. The recreation center was initially envisioned as 100% funded by donations, but B&D showed the university how a robust membership program for alumni and the community could allow the facility to be built much faster. We also helped the school with FF&E specification, business planning, and design review services. In 1999, the 121,000 SF, $15 million Ray Meyer Fitness and Recreation Center opened, and in 2000 it received a Facility of Merit award from Athletic Business magazine and an Outstanding Sports Facility Award from NIRSA.