UNM Regents approve $676k football locker room remodel

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) - The UNM Football locker room is older than most of the athletes that use it. The lockers themselves, have seen major wear and tear. 

"They're falling apart, pieces aren't... we can't find equipment for it," said UNM Athletics Director Eddie Nunez.  

He said renovating the old locker room, that hasn't seen a facelift since 1994, was in the works before he got there. 

"We wanted to be able to do so that our student athletes have a space that honestly... it's more conducive for the student athlete welfare," said Nunez.  

Last week, the Finance and Facilities Committee rejected the Athletics Department's $676,000 renovation plan.

"We didn't do a good job of explaining all the factors of how the money is coming in," said Nunez.  

Monday, however, with a thorough breakdown, the Board of Regents gave the go ahead. 

"The majority of the funds are donor driven," said Nunez.  

According to a breakdown of the funding the Athletics Department gave to the Board of Regents, more than $400,000 is coming from the department's budget, another $156,000 that includes donor money, and $120,000 in severance tax bonds.

"They saw the need," said Nunez. 

People KRQE News 13 spoke to said they wish other departments could get that kind of money.

"It just feels unfair that that department gets like, all of the sort of extra money," said Camilla, a former UNM student.  

Athletics also provided images of the designs for what the locker room will look like. 

"Pull those lockers out, put new carpet in, change the lighting," said Nunez. 

Security is also a major issue they want to fix, so people can't just walk into the locker room. They are considering options like keycard access. For lighting, they're going with LED lights to save money.

"This is a second home to them, so we want to make sure that they have something that at least is safe," said Nunez. 

He said the Athletics Department is using some of the upfront money they get for big upcoming games with schools like LSU and Texas A&M to get the project started. 

Nunez said they hope to have the renovations complete by the beginning of the upcoming football season. 


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