CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Many here in southeast Tennessee remember Bucky Wolford.
He was a football standout at UTC back in the 90’s.
An expansion of sports facilities there will soon carry his name.
In the last 10 to 15 years, UTC’s facilities have expanded by over $300 million dollars.
Executive Vice Chancellor Richard Brown explains this latest addition.
“This will be a $22 million dollar project, we will build new about 25 thousand square feet, an addition at gate one, which will be a beautiful facility, multi-purpose, multi-use,” said Dr. Richard Brown, Executive Vice Chancellor of Finance & Administration at UTC.
The majority of that $22 million dollars will be donated to the University. Vice Chancellor Brown explains why this expansion is needed for the University to stay competitive.
“As we compete in Division I football, just about every southern conference campus has a facility like this, we are so appreciative of the generosity of Bucky Wolford and his family, and the philanthropic support of our donors, who gave to this project, I think this will make us very competitive in the Southern Conference,” said Vice Chancellor Brown.
For the 1st time in over 30 years the McKenzie Arena will be renovated inside, and this 4 story expansion, The Wolford Family Athletic Center, will begin construction in the fall of 2020, next to Gate 1.
“McKenzie Arena’s over 35 years old. So we desperately need to go in and renovate the spaces, bring them up to today’s standards,” said Brown.
And speaking of today’s standards, that includes compliance with Title IX.
“Athletic programs continue to grow, and for the purposes of Title IX, we must provide equal access to sports facilities for men and women’s sports, said Brown.”
But the Wolford Athletic Center isn’t the only project under way on campus right now. The Gary Rollins Business School, which recently received a 40 million donation, is under construction, as well as a multi-million dollar renovation on the old library.
“We’re renovating the old library to the tune of about $38 million dollars – turning it into a state of the art classroom facility, and the beat goes on – we continue to plan and grow this University,” said Brown.