FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Wednesday was a huge day for NAU Athletics as Northern Arizona University held the groundbreaking ceremonies for the new North Campus Athletics & Recreation Center (NC ARC). The facility will be the new home of the NAU swimming & diving and tennis programs and will also enhance the student recreational life experience in addition to further serving the Flagstaff community.
"It's another example of us moving forward," said Dr. Lisa Campos, Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics. "It's going to give men's and women's tennis a home and our swimming & diving team a new home. And it will help in terms of recruiting and competitiveness. We're really excited about this day and what this is going to do for these teams."
The North Campus Athletics & Recreation Center will be a state-of-the-art facility accommodating Lumberjack swimming & diving and tennis in addition to other campus recreation needs. The new facility will include a 50-meter 10 lane Olympic size pool, a 10-meter dive tower and dive well which will replace the existing Wall Aquatic Center, which originally opened in November 1983. The current Wall Aquatic Center does not feature a dive tower and is limited to feature either six 25-meter lanes or eight 50-meter lanes.
NAU men's and women's tennis will finally have a home with the new NC ARC after battling Flagstaff's unpredictable weather the last three years outdoors at Continental Country Club, as well as in Sedona and on one instance this season in Anthem. In addition to the new aquatic facility, the NC ARC will include six indoor tennis courts. Six outdoor tennis courts with spectator seating for over 300 will also be among the many other site improvements which will include a new recreational sports field, new landscaping with native trees and plants and improved pedestrian and vehicular circulation.
Other features for the North Campus Athletics & Recreation Center include a dryland training facility, fitness room, spectator seating, recreation and athletic locker rooms and offices, meeting rooms and social gathering spaces for students.
Quotes from the Coaches:
"I was here as a player and I didn't have one home match. As a coach, there have been so many scenarios the last couple of years. Our future is so bright and there is so much excitement. It's a huge step forward not just for NAU Men's and Women's tennis, but for any tennis player. Tennis is a lifelong sport that needs to be a part of all campuses and communities. I can't say how excited I am for tennis in general." – Kim Bruno, Head Women's Tennis Coach and former NAU Student-Athlete
"It's beyond words how excited I am. The facility is going to be state-of-the-art and for us to be able to train and do what we need to do right here in Flagstaff will be amazing. It was amazing to meet Mr. Doug Wall today, who the Aquatic Center was named after and will continue to be named after. To see the student-athletes and coaches here, it's an exciting day." – Nikki Huffman, Diving Coach
"This is a tremendous day for NAU Swimming & Diving, NAU Tennis and really for the entire university and community. This facility is going to serve so many people in such a great way. I'm so thankful to the administration and everyone who has put in so much hard work to make this happen. Now we just have to sit back and watch this grow." – Andy Johns, Head Swimming & Diving Coach
"It's an exciting time. We're finally going to be able to feel the support of Lumberjack nation. Fans and students will be able to come and cheer our teams on and the guys are excited to know that they'll have a home to play in. It's going to help all the way around in everything we do." – Ki Kroll, Head Men's Tennis Coach