I’d Live There – The New College Locker Room

I’d Live There – The New College Locker Room

At any given point in the academic year, it’s high season for one college sport or another. College recruiters know that great sports teams create a multiplier effect, attracting gifted students, prominent faculty, and noteworthy research. Building a great sports team starts with recruiting top athletes, and athletic departments are getting some recruitment help from a little-considered facility: the locker room.

Locker rooms are generally looked upon as smelly, unattractive, and damp, a necessary part of athletic endeavors but not a place associated with comfort or pleasant aesthetics. College recruiters understand that a dank, unattractive locker room isn’t in keeping with their college’s image. Locker rooms have become part of colleges’ branding efforts, helping them stand out in the fierce competition for athletic talent.

The new football locker room at the University of Texas is a jaw-dropping example, with the look of a high end hotel or exclusive athletic club. Coach Tom Herman is quoted in Business Insider as saying, “This shows we have the very best tools in the country. The lockers affect recruiting because the kids we’re recruiting are the same ones that some of the best schools in the nation are recruiting. A scholarship is a scholarship is a scholarship, no matter where you go. It’s about how you differentiate yourself.”

What about the colleges that don’t have University of Texas’ $7 million to drop on a locker room for the football team? Space optimization is the key, according to architect Jack Patton. Writing in “Athletic Business,” Patton discusses the tactic of space sharing that some colleges have put into practice. By pooling the financial resources of several different sports whose schedules don’t overlap, the schools can create a relatively plush locker room shared by various teams each during its own season.

Space sharing creates complexities of scheduling and storage systems. Facilities managers have to take into account the sizes, shapes, and quantities of equipment to be stored, and make accommodation for all. Flexiblity, such as the adjustable shelving in this high density mobile shelving system, is vital to optimizing the space; lacrosse gear, for example, takes up less room than football equipment, and more room than basketball gear. But a well-planned space sharing program can allow for surprisingly high-end locker rooms that support a college’s image and attract high-quality athletes.

Academic excellence is, of course, the foundation of every college and university, and it should be the deciding factor in any student-athlete’s choice of higher education. But when all other things are equal, a deluxe locker room might tip the scales.

 

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The Undeniable Benefits of Relocation

The Undeniable Benefits of Relocation

Relocation is rarely welcomed with open arms, but when it’s the result of your organization’s growth, it’s a high-class problem to have. Moreover, relocation is a great opportunity for improvements of many kinds. It’s a chance to take a step back and gain perspective on your progress, and look forward toward future growth and how your new space can support it. Australian design consultancy Aspect lists five benefits of relocation that apply to almost any business organization.

  1. Improved Productivity – Overcrowding cuts into productivity. Your new location gives you a chance to design your workspace and storage for efficient space usage so no one is crowded.
  2. Added Flexibility – “Agile” teams are built around the principle of self-determination, requiring a flexible, collaborative management style. Flexible workstations underscore the agile philosophy, and a relocation is the perfect time to add flexibility to your office environment.
  3. Lower Costs – If you’re in a buyer’s market, relocation can allow you to negotiate a favorable rental rate or purchase price. If you wisely chose modular casework for your current offices, you can take the cabinetry with you to your new space and save some build-out costs.
  4. Room to Grow – Even if you’re not relocating to a much larger space, you can still add room for new staff by condensing your storage footprint with a mobile high density storage system.
  5. Enhanced Brand Image – As your organization grows, your brand image becomes more focused and better refined. A relocation is a perfect time to design a workspace that reflects your brand’s values; for example, if sustainability is a primary brand value, invest in workstations and furnishings manufactured to meet green standards.

A new workspace is a blank slate, ready for you to write the future for your business. It’s an exciting time, filled with possibilities for what’s next. Focus on the positive opportunities, talk to a design and storage consultant, and enjoy the benefits of a successful relocation.

 

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