Liberty University's new 60,000-square-foot Academic and Performance Center (APC), currently under construction next to the Liberty Baseball Stadium, will integrate study areas with state-of-the-art rehabilitation and strength and conditioning facilities.
"Our student-athletes have succeeded at an extremely high level," said Jeff Barber, Liberty's director of athletics. "The new APC will be a physical sign to our recruits and their families of the importance of academics at Liberty and will show that we are committed to giving them every tool they need to be successful in the classroom."
The building, situated behind Osbourne Stadium and the Matthes-Hopkins Track Complex near the new Freedom Tower, is scheduled to open in the summer of 2017. Approximately one-third of the space will be reserved for academic offices, tutoring centers, and study halls. It will also feature an Olympic sport weight room and space for short- and long-term rehabilitation of Liberty's NCAA Division I athletes.
Kristie Beitz, senior associate athletics director for academic affairs, said the floorplan will promote cooperation between student-athletes and various Department of Athletics personnel.
"We have designed it in such a way that there are academic neighborhoods within the academic floors. You have full-time staff members placed in the midst of tutorial spaces, conference rooms, a computer lab, and an open library study space," she said. "That way, there's continuous interaction between our student-athletes, full-time staff, mentors, and tutorial staff."
The location — at the heart of Liberty's athletics corridor — will make it easily accessible for all student-athletes.
"It will be a beautiful focal point along the greenway," Beitz said. "Students will be able to cross over a bridge to the APC and pass between the baseball stadium and the (Williams Stadium) Football Operations Center to get to Green Hall."
Liberty contracted Charlottesville-based VMDO Architects to undertake the project. They created a modern design similar to other new buildings on campus, with innovative integration. The terraced, three-story structure will be built into the existing hillside, its architecture curving along with the bank of the track.
"They're incorporating water features and a lot of light into the facility that will make it very tranquil," Beitz said. "They've really tried to utilize the scenery of Lynchburg and the beautiful views of the mountains to create a space for us that will be an awesome learning environment. It's exciting to see such a commitment to putting our student-athletes' individual well-being at the forefront of their athletic and academic experience here at Liberty University."
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