Rock wall not coming to campus

SGA executive officers meet in the GUC Oct. 4 and discuss student and campus issues. Last week, senate limited the funding of the UNA Rugby Club to only the club sports fund.

SGA has decided not to pursue plans announced last November to purchase a rock climbing wall for the SRC.

Following a student opinion poll on Facebook, SGA had originally intended to utilize surplus funds from the failed acquisition of the Florence Golf and Country Club to bankroll a number of initiatives, including the rock climbing wall, an outdoor pool and a disc golf course.

Instead, this excess money, along with some additional cash raised by a one-time $1 addition to students’ recreation fees, was pumped into financing the spring concert, providing the Military-Veterans Affairs Alliance with additional funds and facilitating the construction of the Communications Building’s movie room.

SGA Senate Vice President Jordan Brasher said that while plans for the disc golf course were discarded due to the campus’ proximity to the course at Veterans Park and plans for the outdoor pool were never realized due to the unrealistic cost of the project, plans for the rock wall fell through mainly due to financial disagreements among senators and logistical concerns. Among these concerns, SRC Director Jim Eubanks informed SGA that the infrastructure of the SRC would not support a “full rock wall.”

To remedy this and the funding issues, SGA President Will Riley said the organization found four transportable “rotating” rock walls, though that project was discarded, too.

“People decided that wasn’t a sufficient spending, and they decided not to pursue to the purchase of the rock wall,” Riley said.

Outdoor Adventure Center staff member and UNA student Brandon Pennington said he’s disappointed the rock wall didn’t happen.

“We were all pretty excited at the Outdoor Center; we were hoping for (a rock wall),” he said. “I think the rock wall would’ve seen a pretty good bit of use, had they installed it.”

Riley said he thinks the wall would have been a good addition to UNA.

“I think it would be a great addition if the students would want it, but we haven’t done the research to see if students want it or want to pursue it,” Riley said.

Brasher said the rock wall would be put to good use by the UNA community, speculating that if it lacked demand for recreational use, it would be used by the personal training program at the SRC.

A resolution for the purchase of multiple rotating rock walls came to the SGA senate floor three times, the maximum number of times any proposal can be submitted to the senate. This means a new resolution can be submitted, but it would have to be “completely redone” and “from another author,” Brasher said.

Pennington said he thinks there’s certainly demand for a rock wall on campus and thinks the resolution would be “worth considering again.”

“The purchase of a rock wall would have to be brought up again,” Riley said. “Most senators that are here now were not in the senate last year. These are completely new faces that think different.

“We’re currently not pursuing it. That’s not to say it couldn’t come up again, but it is not currently on the 2012/13 agenda at this time.”