Education

Groundbreaking Thursday for McKendree rec plex

File video: Ice rink, pool part of McKendree rec plex near O’Fallon

McKendree University President James Dennis in 2015 talks about the new recreation complex being built between the university's home in Lebanon and O'Fallon. The complex opened in February 2017.
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McKendree University President James Dennis in 2015 talks about the new recreation complex being built between the university's home in Lebanon and O'Fallon. The complex opened in February 2017.

Developers will break ground Thursday on a new McKendree University recreation center.

The development called the McKendree Metro Rec Plex is part of a larger Four Points Commercial Development on the site. It will include two National Hockey League-sized ice rinks, an aquatic center with a competition swimming pool and a recreational swimming pool, a fitness facility, a walking track and a half-court basketball facility. It will be part of a larger business and office complex to be developed at Scott-Troy Road and U.S. Highway 50 in O’Fallon.

Dean Oelze of S.I Strategy LLC is the lead developer in the project.

“After more than two years of planning and design, it is with great enthusiasm that we are beginning the construction of the McKendree Metro Rec Plex,” Oelze said. “This facility will be the first phase in the development of The Four Points Center, which is a mixed-use development that will encompass 45 acres for retail, hospitality, professional office and of course recreation.”

McKendree University President James Dennis said the partnership with a private developer will be a benefit to students and athletes.

“The McKendree community is thrilled to be a participant in this important community endeavor, Dennis said. “Our students will benefit by having a world class facility on our extended campus. We salute Dean Oelze for his vision and commitment to forging a relationship and express appreciation to all who have made this exciting project possible.”

The rec center will offer memberships to the public. It is expected to take about a year to build, opening in the fall of 2016.

The ground breaking is scheduled to take place at 2 p.m. Thursday.

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