The Southwest Recreation Center will be bigger and better come fall 2010, as a result of the demands made by students, UF director of recreational sports David Bowles said.
More cardiovascular equipment and a track on the second floor will be made available to students, he said.
The $16.3 million project, which is funded by the Capital Improvement Trust Fund, is the solution to the scant amount of cardiovascular equipment available at the center.
Each student's tuition contributes $2.44 per credit hour to the fund and goes to build student services.
"The No. 1 demand from students right now is cardio equipment," Bowles said. "And students should get what they pay for."
He said the Southwest Recreation Center is expanding due to benchmarking studies, where university recreational centers compare themselves to other centers, as well as the high demand for admission into UF and students' requests.
Bowles said he talked throughout the year to student employees and observed students using the equipment to gain an idea of students' needs.
Other gym employees are enthusiastic about the addition.
Catherine Cramp, UF's associate director of recreational sports, is excited about the project and said the new expansion will increase cardio space from 5,600 square feet to about 15,000 square feet.
Cramp added the new student center will include more space for yoga classes, reformer Pilates and massage therapy.
"Southwest will become an even better communal place, where people feel welcomed," she said.