As the campus begins to make way for its new health and learning center, patrons of the NAU Recreation Center will find a new venue for their fitness routines when the facility temporarily relocates to the Fieldhouse next month.

The move is the next phase in planning for a new facility to replace the university’s 20-year-old fitness center and become an integrated service center, providing physical health, mental health, recreational services, athletic locker rooms, a café, social gathering space and classrooms.

Students, faculty and staff can expect about two weeks of down time beginning Saturday, Aug. 8, during which both facilities will be closed while offices and services are relocated to the University Union. There, the Fieldhouse will be modified to temporarily house fitness equipment and facilities for the next 22 months while the new center is under construction.

The Fieldhouse is slated to reopen by Monday, Aug. 24, although planners hope it will be available as soon as Thursday, Aug. 20, when students begin returning to campus for the fall term.

Scott Cassells, director of Campus Recreation Services, said several areas of the Fieldhouse are being utilized to accommodate the services available at the Recreation Center.

“Group exercise classes will be offered in the Kaibab room, the game room will be converted to accommodate the cardio equipment, and the gym will house strength training equipment, basketball courts, volleyball courts and the indoor jogging track,” Cassells said.

Users will have access to changing rooms with showers, and lockers will be available for daily use. Locker rentals may be available in the near future on a limited basis.

One casualty of the move will be racquetball courts, which will return once the new facility is complete.

“We are working on restoring racquetball courts at the Rolle Activity Center and hope to have some available later this fall,” Cassells explained.

“We realize the relocation will be a temporary inconvenience, and so we are making sure to bring some new and updated features to the Fieldhouse, including treadmills and a new climbing wall,” Cassells said.

The main entrance will be through the Fieldhouse lobby, and it will operate in the same fashion as it has at the Recreation Center where ID cards will be required for entry of students, faculty and staff.

Cassells said offices and services related to Campus Recreation Services will be available on a limited basis for the two weeks the department spends relocating.