Bowling and Billiards, located in the University Center, will officially close Aug. 13 to make way for a new location to house Student Affairs departments, according to David Albart, director of University Center Operations.
The decision came after months of deliberation and consideration from Frank Lamas, vice president for Student Affairs. Lamas said he isn’t happy about closing down the center, but the numbers did not justify keeping it open with the 15,000 square feet room it utilized.
The space will be used to expand the Career Development Center, Leadership Center and other offices to be named later, Lamas said. There are more than 15,000 people in student organizations, Lamas added.
Lamas said the attendance numbers did not tell the whole story.
“When you looked at the number of people, there were more people coming in the summer than there were throughout the academic year,” Lamas said. “The numbers did not sustain using the 15,000 square feet.”
At a Student Congress forum in February, Albart said approximately 52,640 people walked through the doors of Bowling and Billiards in 2012. The amount does not indicate the amount of times bowling and billiards equipment was used, solely the amount of traffic that passed through the doors.
The Shorthorn reported in February that 3,552 games pool were paid for and 2,022 games of bowling were paid for from Sept. 1 to Jan. 26.
The changes being done to Bowling and Billiards means the pool tables will be moved to the Maverick Activities Center, while the bowling equipment will be auctioned off, Albart said in an email.
Bowling and Billiards has been open since 1964. Toby Bush, Bowling and Billiards games supervisor, did not wish to comment on the closure.
Billiards will open in the MAC a day after Bowling and Billiards closes, but there may be some painting and odd jobs that are not finished by that time, Lamas said.
Some students voiced their concerns at the forum stating that there weren’t enough activities on campus, and there were some emotional ties to the facility.
“I’ve been opposed to this from the start,” criminal justice major Tony Cantu said at the public forum in February. “Lamas mentioned the 15,000 students who would benefit from this plan, but where are they? They don’t feel the need to be here to support.”
Student Congress representatives were not available to comment by press time.
As of now, renovations will take place once demolition and planning with an architect have been made. There have not been any cost projections yet.
The final project should be completed by late summer or early fall 2014.
“I couldn’t be more pleased and excited for our students,” Lamas said. “Because I firmly believe this is going to be a game changer for our student body.”
Clarification: The original version of this story said 52,640 people walked into Bowling and Billiards, but it was for the entire year of 2012. Also, the original version said 3,552 and 2,022 people paid for bowling, but the numbers are for paid games not the amount of people.