The Coles Sports and Recreation Facility at NYU will be replaced by a mixedused development that will include fitness and recreation space copyNYU Photo Bureau Miller

The Coles Sports and Recreation Facility at NYU will be replaced by a mixed-used development that will include fitness and recreation space. (©NYU Photo Bureau: Miller)

Campus Expansion Means NYU Will Close Existing Recreation Center

Plans call for a new mixed-used development that will include recreation and fitness space.

A court ruling that cleared the way for New York University (NYU) to carry out a massive expansion of its campus will mean significant changes in the school’s recreation and fitness facilities.

The overall plan calls for adding 1.9 million square feet of space. Opponents of the expansion sued to stop it, but the New York State Court of Appeals dismissed the suit and cleared the way for the expansion to move forward.

That includes construction of a 900,000-square-foot mixed-use facility on the site of what is now the Coles Sports and Recreation Center.

Plans for that project call for 150,000 square feet of space dedicated to athletics and recreation, but as redevelopment moves forward, the university soon will have to shut down the existing recreation and fitness space.

Officials say the Coles facility will remain open until at least Nov. 15; in the meantime, NYU is making plans to provide alternative fitness opportunities.

“We are committed to keeping the facility open until adequate replacement facilities are made available,” university officials said in an update to the NYU community on July 29. “NYU is currently in the process of readying a new fitness center…that will include strength and cardio training, as well as recreation classes.”

The university is creating a fitness center a few blocks away from the Coles building at 404 Lafayette Street that will offer strength training, cardio exercise, recreation classes and locker rooms. NYU also is extending operating hours at the Palladium Athletic Facility and has opened a newly enhanced fitness center at the NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering in Brooklyn.

The facility that will replace the Coles center, in addition to fitness and recreation space, will have classrooms, housing for about 500 freshmen and 100 faculty families; study and student-life spaces, a large theater, four workshop theaters and other specialized spaces for the performing arts.

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