AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - Hundreds of students anxiously waited for a tour as Auburn University officially opened the doors to the new campus recreation and wellness center Monday.
"I'm extremely excited. It is so nice. It's got everything in one place. It's going to be great, it's definitely going to be great," says AU student, Josh Lambert.
The 240,000-square-foot facility has already made top ranks as the number one wellness center in the country.
The building includes the nation's longest indoor running track, a five-story rock climbing wall, and several areas for both fitness training and leisure activities.
"My hope and goal is that out students find a hope at this building and they come over here to recreate and concentrate on promoting their wellness. So we want them to be here every day. When they're not in school we want them to be here," explains Director of Campus Recreation, Jennifer Jarvis.
The idea of the center started as a former SGA president's platform in 2008.
Auburn students voted to increase their activity fees in order to raise funds to help build the $72 million project.
"It's going to change the whole experience for Auburn students. Students are going to want to stay on campus, actually want to work out and be really healthy. I think it's going to inspire a lot of students," says former SGA president, Lauren Hayes.
The state-of-the-art facility is a one stop shop to encourage a healthy lifestyle for Auburn students, faculty and staff, as they begin a new school year.
"Its make me feel so great. I get to stay on campus and just hang out here all the time," says Lambert, "It just really instills more of the Auburn way."