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The Appalachian

The Student News Site of Appalachian State University

The Appalachian

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The Appalachian

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Catching up on campus construction

University students may spend their time working, taking classes, caring for their families or any other endless, time-consuming possibilities. App State has stayed busy as well, renovating and updating various spaces of student activity. From fresh courts, redesigned campus store and a new track and field, these are some of App State’s summer projects.

Inside Plemmons Student Union, the Campus Store welcomed back students with a refreshed look and a new layout. 

The new layout of the store isn’t just beneficial to customers. The new store design hosts two separate registers beside each entrance, making it easier for employees to check out more customers without being crammed in the same place. 

Another update the university made during the summer was replacing the equipment in the weight room of the Student Recreation Center, as well as the floors of the indoor basketball courts. 

Aidan Shelton and Adam Wesp both spent their summer regularly visiting the SRC and said they watched the progress first-hand. 

Shelton said it is “really nice to have some good quality equipment” in the weight room.

An excavator sits outside Wey Hall to be used for construction. (Ashton Woodruff)

Of the equipment replaced, Shelton said he was excited to use the new dumbbells as the old sets were rusted and very old. 

Shelton and Wesp, both regular users of SRC’s indoor basketball courts, said they felt unsafe when playing on the previous flooring. 

“There were days that if I wasn’t wearing the right shoes, I wasn’t quite as comfortable going 100% because I didn’t want to blow out my ACL or anything,” Shelton said. “It just feels much safer, much better.” 

The slickness of the floor was not the only problem, said Wesp, who appreciated that the new floors came with redrawn lines that fixed previous errors. 

“The old courts, the paint in the basketball court, it’s supposed to be a rectangle but for some reason it was more of a trapezoid shape,” Wesp said. 

The next project involves the new track and field. At the end of April, the university celebrated the opening of the Randy Marion track and field facility at the Appalachian 105 property. The construction at 105 will continue during the fall semester, as the university breaks ground on phase two of the project, according to App State’s future

Director of Track & Field/Cross Country Damion McLean said he got his teams practicing in the facilities as soon as he could. 

“We’ve been out there whether it was cold or hot because it was something that is needed,” said McLean. “And we’ve been very grateful to have it to practice.”

As an App State alum, McLean has seen the various improvements the university has made to different student athletic facilities. He said the addition of the track and field at 105 is extremely beneficial to the team. 

“The whole team has been out there, from the distance to the throws, we get to see everybody at the same time, so they can cheer on each individual person, especially when it’s been a hard workout,” McLean said. 

Jada Branch, a former track & field athlete, had an extremely successful season, said McLean, and qualified to compete in the USA Track & Field Elite Championship, placing 10th in the triple jump. Due to their success in the past season, McLean and some team members spent their long season practicing at the field at 105. 

The Randy Marion facility includes a stand-alone track, two long jump pits and a pole vault area which can accommodate two high jump pits and a javelin runway, said McLean.

News and Media Relations Director Anna Oakes said in an email the university plans to start 21 projects during the 2023-24 academic year and complete around 14 projects. 

“However, project schedules could be impacted by weather, supply chain issues, the timing of the state budget and other factors,” Oakes said.

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About the Contributors
Siri Patterson
Siri Patterson, Managing Editor
Siri Patterson (she/her/hers) is a junior journalism major with a minor in political science. This is her second year writing for The Appalachian.
Ashton Woodruff
Ashton Woodruff, Photo Editor
Ashton Woodruff (she/her) is a junior IDS Criminal Justice/Photojournalism major, and a Social Work minor. This is her second year with The Appalachian.
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