Student-athlete success center groundbreaking set for 'early 2014'


FAYETTEVILLE — Construction of Arkansas’ indoor baseball/track facility is underway with completion set for next summer. The Razorbacks will break ground on the long-awaited basketball practice facility early next month, too.

Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long has now revealed it won’t be much longer before construction on the third athletic facilities project begins.

Long said the Razorbacks have plans to break ground on the Student-Athlete Success Center in early 2014. Long announced those plans — without setting a specific date for the ground breaking — during the beam signing ceremony for the baseball/track facility on Tuesday afternoon.

The 58,000-square foot facility has an estimated price tag of $18 to $23 million, according to earlier estimates. It will include a computer lab, math, science and language skills learning labs, group study rooms, quite study areas, tutorial rooms, academic advising and sports psychology offices, and a dining hall.

The center will be located east of John McDonnell Field and north of Pomfret Hall facing Meadow Street. It will “create a comprehensive support program, addressing the academic, nutritional, personal and professional development needs of our more than 460 student-athletes in preparation for graduation,” according to Arkansas.

It’s the third project in a three-pronged fundraising campaign the Arkansas athletic department launched earlier this year. The price tag for the three projects (student-athlete success center, basketball practice facility and indoor baseball/track facility) is estimated at $58 million.

The university’s board of trustees approved $36.5 million in bonds earlier this year to help pay for the projects. Fundraising for all three facilities is still underway.