The University of Washington Tacoma has opened the University Y Student Center in partnership with the local YMCA. The center houses a large health and fitness center as well as offices, and meeting and social spaces for students.
UW Tacoma constructed and owns the $22 million facility, and the YMCA of Pierce & Kitsap Counties operates it. Officials with the Y and the university had been in talks since 2008 about teaming up to make the student center a reality.
The impetus for building the center came from a student survey several years ago that identified a recreation facility as one of the primary amenities that students were seeking. At the time, the fitness programs available on campus were "extremely limited," says Zachary Druce, associate executive director with the YMCA. Druce joined the Y recently after working as a student facilities specialist with UW-Tacoma.