PAC upgrades being revisited

The Pioneer Activity Center was expanded and the fitness center and weight room were upgraded two and a half years ago.

According to University of Wisconsin-Platteville Athletic Director Mark Molesworth, the new student-funded facility was essential to the growing population of the university, approximately five thousand of which pass through the facility every week.

“The old facility was unable to meet the needs of the student body,” Molesworth said.  “My vision was like the Olympic Training Center at Colorado Springs.  Everyone has to share.”

A major focus of the facility’s re-design was meeting the needs of every user, with powerlifting platforms and racks separate from the dumbbells and mechanized weight training equipment.  It was designed for universal use, and the equipment a basketball player was expected to train with, like the jumping platforms, could be utilized by other athletes Molesworth said.

In the old weight room, now the wrestling practice room, the walkway students took to the water fountain in between sets meant they had walk past athletes lifting on the platforms.

“There was a risk that they could drop (weights) on (people walking past),” PAC Director Curt Fatzinger said.

The new facility has been met with positive responses.

“It’s the best equipment I’ve ever used,” junior soccor player Cameron Weess said.  “It has everything I need.”

Weess’ only complaint about the new facility is that it is overcrowded at times, a common complaint among users.  However, administrators say the problem is improved from the former fitness center.

“Picture two o’clock or so at the facility today; that was 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. in the old weight room,” Fatzinger said.

Equipment upkeep is a major concern as well, and employees at the PAC take care to see that everything is maintained and kept clean.  Issues with equipment like the calf-raise and leg-press machines are assessed and taken care of as they occur.  Administrators know these issues are par with the course.

“You always have problems with equipment,” Molesworth said.

There are several new proposals currently in the works for expanding the PAC.  New basketball courts, a new Olympic-size swimming pool and turfing the old baseball field are some projects the administration said it hopes to begin.