WAYNE – While students close out the Spring 2020 semester with online learning, work continues on campus to open the new Indoor Athletic Complex at Wayne State College.
After filling the pool inside the Natatorium with high density foam, construction carries on to the next phase of the timeline.
Director of Athletics at Wayne State College, Mike Powicki said the space was measured to level everything out.
“Special ordered this foam that fills in all the cracks and once that gets to a certain point, they fill it in with some gravel,” said Powicki. “Which eventually the turf will go over the top. We’ll put a pad over top of that and the artificial surface will go over top of that.”
The College opted for a pad as opposed to the typical infield like at Memorial Stadium.
Powicki has been wanting to do something with the Natatorium area since about the time he arrived on campus seven and a half years ago. After spending a significant amount of time and money on trying to fix the leaking issues in the pool several minds had to come together.
“How can we repurpose this area so it’s an actual of use to our staff and our students,” Powicki added. “Two and a half years ago we really started thinking okay how can we use this space and, of course, naturally an indoor athletic complex boiled to the surface.”
The next step was to figure out costs of just under $1.4 million before identifying resources.
“We were pretty fortunate that we were able to fundraise for this project pretty quickly,” Powicki mentioned. “Partnering up with our foundation we identified some alums and donors who wanted to get on board and support this project as long as some grant funding as well. Basically, we were able to identify the resources pretty quickly and here we are.”
In early October of 2019 the Gardner Foundation pledged $1.8 million to Wayne State College with $300,000 being used towards the Indoor Athletic Complex. WSC also received grant funding from the Nebraska State College System.
Once complete, the Indoor Athletic Complex will be open to everyone. The Athletic Department will have to form a structure and schedule times out to be used.
Other additions include five offices, nets all around the indoor complex for baseball/softball batting cages, putting greens, ‘grass’ volleyball and more.
The project is right on pace, according to Powicki.
“I think all along knowing that this project was an indoor project you don’t get delays from weather,” said Powicki. “So, we’re on schedule to be done by that August 1 timeframe. Now things can come up but the more important thing for us is let’s just be done by the time school is in session so we have access to the facility.”
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