Wellness and Recreation Center

The new Wellness and Recreation Center is the largest capital construction project in the history of St. Ambrose University. Here are some project facts:

The Building

  • 80,000 total square-feet of new construction
  • 56,000 square-feet field house, with 200-meter, six-lane competition track, pole vault areas, long- and triple-jump pits; and four basketball/volleyball courts (two wooden floor courts, two resilient flooring courts)
  • 5,200-square-feet, two-story cardio/weightlifting workout center
  • 2,200-square-feet group exercise room
  • 1,200-square-feet club room
  • Concurrent renovation of 19,000 square-feet PE Center includes new HVAC systems; office suites for Athletics and Wellness and Recreation Departments; weight room for use by athletics teams; updates to locker rooms; new bathrooms and locker rooms and interior painting of Lee Lohman Arena.

Primary Uses 

  • Exercise and activity space for students, faculty and staff
  • Wellness and Recreation Department activities and intramural athletics
  • Lab space for health and wellness-related academic programs, including Kinesiology
  • Practice space for student-athletes

The Team
Lead Architect: Jack Patton, RDG Planning and Design, Des Moines, Iowa
General Contractor: Russell Construction, Davenport, Iowa, with an additional 42 regional firms used as subcontractors

The buildling was identified by the Board of Trustees as highest priority in a Master Plan approved in 2011. We broke ground in April 2016, concurrent with announcement of Building Our Future capital campaign and it opened for student and campus use in August 2017.


  • Total cost (including equipment and furniture): $21.5 million
  • Construction cost: $18.5 million· Building Our Future campaign fundraising goal: $18.5 million
  • Campaign co-chairs: Beth (Figge) '86 and Brian Lemek '86 and Barbara (Bush) and Michael Johnson; honorary campaign chairs Jim '56, '93 (Hon) and Mary Hagen.

Sudden Impact and Instant Gratitude

Dedication and Blessing
September 29

Upon completion of the largest single capital project in the school's history, the Wellness and Recreation Center was officially opened.

Read: Celebrating Homecoming and Health

So, what's next?

Are you ready to take the next step? St. Ambrose offers more than 60 programs and 26 athletic teams and sports to join on campus. Become an Ambrosian today!