Thursday, December 3, 2009

Death Star christened


About a month after it finally opened (a month behind schedule) the gigantic, gleaming $52 million recreation center received a formal unveiling this afternoon with Chancellor Holub and President Jack Wilson (neither of them dressed in work out clothes) doing the honors behind a podium in front of perhaps 85 dignitaries, while all around them a couple hundred students exercised inside and a half-dozen Grad students on the outside protesting a 300% fee increase for their membership.
Jack started his speech with an off-the-cuff joke about Grad students keeping in shape.

Since the center was financed by "student fees", undergrads work out free. Professors, Graduate Students and just plain old Alumni can join for anywhere from $125 to $200 per semester (up from a previous $40).

But these rates are comparably--if not slightly lower--to area private sector health clubs; well, except Planet Fitness but their rock bottom pricing is far from industry standard, although that still can't compete with "free".

Now you know why I call it the Death Star.


Nice to see the local building inspectors mess with everybody!




video

15 comments:

Ed said...

Two words - Free Parking.

Particularly during the day, particularly in cold weather, you will find that - once the novelty wears off - students will pay to go to where they can drive to rather than have to WALK there....

LarryK4 said...

Well heck, I'm all set. The landlord just repaved my entire parking lot.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Ed, for weighing with your latest erroneous prognostication.

Anonymous said...

What we need is an Ed Prognostication Recap, just so we can keep an inventory of some of these whoppers.

How does one man accumulate such wisdom?

And on so many different topics?

Anonymous said...

I can tell you how Ed has been an adult college student long enough to have at least one Phd.

So Ed when's your graduation date?

Anonymous said...

What's wrong with this picture at UMass:

1) Huge parking lots filled with student/staff cars

2) The "Death Star"

?????????????????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

If students and staff dumped their cars and walked more (or rode their bikes like Larry does), then both
1) and 2) would wither away and UMass could invest in more productive things (and Larry could sleep a little easier).

What a colossal waste this is....

LarryK4 said...

Ah yes, if ONLY we lived in a perfect world.

But Umass has not upgraded its exercise/recreation offerings since Ike was President, so they were definitely W-A-Y past due.

But by the same token, the ENTIRE private sector over the ENTIRE country over this past ENTIRE decade, has not built a $52 million facility.

For instance if I had done that in South Amherst, my property taxes alone to the People's Republic of Amherst would be $750,000 this year.

ed said...

But Umass has not upgraded its exercise/recreation offerings since Ike was President, so they were definitely W-A-Y past due.

That is not why they did it. Problem is that the athletic department (sports teams) and students wanted to use the same facilities. Hence the need to make the students (already paying for the existing ones) buy a new one too.

The costs of athletics is often shifted and this is yet another example...

And as an aside, two other things.

First, non sequtor ad hominum.

And second, those who want to critique my tenure at Planet UMass might have a slightly different perspective if they knew the facts. Not to let anyone be confused with the facts....

Anonymous said...

Non sequitur,
Ad hominem.

Anonymous said...

Now you know why Ed's been there so long.

Anonymous said...

Maybe the University should build a music store,clothing store, barber shop, travel agency, liquor store,casino,restaurants,gas station,post office,MacDonalds,Wendys,BurgerKing,Computer Store, Best Buy, Buffalo Wings, Target all with taxpayer money. Then the students would never have to leave campus.

LarryK4 said...

Yeah, how long would Stackers or Charlie's or The Spoke last if Umass opened a bar where the beer was free to undergrads?

Anonymous said...

Um, colleges had gyms before there were health clubs. You are the new kids on the block not them. Get over it.

LarryK4 said...

I got over it 28 years ago. "Live by the students, die by the students."

Anonymous said...

Yes colleges had gyms before health clubs but this new gym is bigger and more costly than the old Mass Aggie.