UHV breaks ground on new health, wellness center
The University of Houston-Victoria hosted a groundbreaking ceremony Tuesday morning to officially begin construction on the university’s new Health and Wellness Center.
The UHV Health & Wellness Center will be located at the corner of Ben Wilson and Red River streets across Ben Wilson Street from Dairy Queen. The 38,864 square-foot building will offer UHV students, faculty and staff a place to safely participate in fitness and wellness activities. It also will be home to a 5,500 square-foot walk-in clinic run by DeTar Healthcare System. The building is projected to be completed in the spring of 2025.
“We are excited about beginning this project because of the great value it will bring to our campus community,” UHV President Bob Glenn said. “It will help us build the residential community experience our students want and deserve.”
During the groundbreaking ceremony, attendees listened to remarks from Glenn as well as Bernard Leger, CEO of DeTar Healthcare System. The ceremony was attended by representatives from UHV, DeTar, the UH System, the SmithGroup architecture company and Bartlett Cocke General Contractors. After the ceremony, attendees were able to have their pictures taken turning the dirt for the new building.
In addition to the clinic, the center will have a variety of spaces for physical and health-oriented activities. The first floor will house two indoor basketball courts that can also be used for volleyball and pickleball, a strength and weight training area, locker rooms, and two multi-fitness rooms for athletics classes. The second floor will feature a padded track, a group fitness area, a cardio fitness area, wellness rooms for meditation or mental relaxation, and a functional fitness area for more intense workout programs.
“The Health & Wellness Center represents a sanctuary for students to access high-quality fitness activities and exercise options that will cater to their diverse needs,” said Jay Lambert, UHV vice president for student affairs. “It will stand as a testament to UHVs dedication to providing comprehensive support that goes beyond academics, ensuring that our students have the resources they need to flourish both inside and outside the classroom.”
The building was funded through a student fee that UHV students voted to approve in December 2018. UHV also received a $2 million grant from the M.G. & Lillie A. Johnson Foundation – the biggest gift in the university’s history – to help build out the areas that will be used for health education. UHV students will be able to use the building’s athletics facilities for free. The university’s employees can use the facility for a small fee.
As the university begins construction on the new Health & Wellness Center, the Ben Wilson Street construction is progressing quickly. The improvement project to Ben Wilson Street between Airline Road and Red River Street is on budget and on schedule. It is on track to be completed in December.
The University of Houston-Victoria, located in the heart of the Coastal Bend region since 1973 in Victoria, Texas, offers courses leading to more than 50 academic programs in the schools of Arts & Sciences; Business Administration; and Education, Health Professions & Human Development. UHV provides face-to-face classes at its Victoria campus, as well as an instructional site in Katy, Texas, and online classes that students can take from anywhere. UHV supports the American Association of State Colleges and Universities Opportunities for All initiative to increase awareness about state colleges and universities and the important role they have in providing a high-quality and accessible education to an increasingly diverse student population, as well as contributing to regional and state economic development.