New sports facility to come soon?

Sports bubble to be voted on, would hold classes, recreation and athletics

Bobbi Patrick
Staff Writer

A new multi-use facility might be coming to Minnesota State’s campus to support university health and wellness as early as next fall.

Students will have the opportunity to vote to pass a referendum in either November or December 2018 to bring a sports dome to campus to have more room available to host academic classes, campus recreation, athletics, and to host community events.

Since MNSU is limited on indoor space available for students to enjoy their sports, the sports bubble would allow another year-round facility for sport. The bubble would be built across from the Kwik Trip off of Monks Avenue, where there is currently a soccer field.

“The seasonal sports bubble will be open and available to serve all MNSU students. Sport clubs, intramurals, open recreation, fitness activities, ground based team building, academic classes, Maverick Machine practices, Athletics and much more,” stated Todd Pfingsten, Director of Campus Recreation.

The estimated cost of the field is about 3.5 to 4.0 million dollars, but the sports bubble would be up and operating as early as Oct. 15, 2019.

The seasonal bubble would be an air-inflated dome with a synthetic turf playing field which would be about 75 yards long. The facility would be heated to about 60 degrees in the winter months.

The facility will cost a large amount of money, but MNSU will be paying approximately $2 million or half the construction cost for the facility.

The other half of the funding would come from students, if the sports bubble was voted in as an agreement from the MNSU student body. The fee would be .83 cents per credit for a 10-year period.

According to the MNSU Frequently Asked Questions section about the sports bubble, there will be an open forum that will be held sometime this month for students to ask questions as well as provide feedback on the sports bubble.

If the referendum fails, MNSU will look to install synthetic turf to the outdoor track as an alternative for playable space.

Pfingsten said that sports like soccer, rugby, lacrosse, ultimate Frisbee, baseball, softball, football, cricket, walking, jogging, and running will benefit from the indoor turf of the sports bubble.

Students will also have, “300 hours of valuable court space time for a variety of indoor activities in Myers and Schellberg such as basketball, volleyball, table tennis, cricket, badminton, pickleball, team building programs, indoor climbing wall access, and much more.  It is very likely that a number of academic and activity classes would use the sports bubble as well,” stated Pfingsten.

One of MNSU’s primary concerns is health and wellness, and President Davenport is wanting to expand recreational and athletic facilities to improve academic and recreational experience at MNSU.

“We are committed in providing high qualityacademic, recreational and athletic facilities that result in the improved health and wellness of our students, faculty and staff,” said President Davenport.

The sports bubble proposal PDF can be found on the MNSU website for more information on the project as well as frequently asked questions.

Feature photo courtesy of MNSU Campus Recreation.

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