Building Permit Issued for SMC Recreation Center

Construction Set to Begin This Summer

After a year of negotiations to secure all the necessary municipal approvals, a building permit has been issued for the Joseph L. Alioto Recreation Center, said Tim Farley, Saint Mary’s director of community and government relations.  

Meanwhile, construction bids for the $22.8 million center are being evaluated. Once construction begins, the building phase is expected to take around 18 months, according to Ben Evans, project manager for Overaa Construction, which is overseeing the project. Based on this timeline, campus officials expect work on the recreation center to begin around August 15 this year, with a completion target of February 2015.

During construction, the parking lot near the tennis courts will be used as a staging area for construction vehicles. To compensate, 59 parking spaces will be added to the large commuter parking lot in front of Brother Jerome West and Filippi Halls. Work to expand that lot will begin this week and continue into August.

Numerous permits and a California Environmental Quality Act determination were required before construction on the Recreation Center could begin. The College has also made a number of revisions to the original plan at the request of the Town of Moraga Planning Department. 

The recreation center is expected to greatly improve the Saint Mary's student experience. At the groundbreaking, SMC President Brother Ronald Gallagher said it "will create a much-needed center for academic, personal and recreational activities" and Athletic Director Mark Orr said it will be a boon to recruitment "not just for student athletes but for all students.”

The project includes the new 50,000-square-foot Joseph L. Alioto Recreation Center, named for the 1937 alumnus who served as mayor of San Francisco, and an outdoor plaza linking the new building to the existing Korth Tennis Complex and Cottrell Softball Field.

The recreation and aquatics center will feature an 8,000-square-foot comprehensive fitness center, a 95-by-150-foot swimming pool, multipurpose rooms, locker rooms and three full-size courts for indoor and intramural sports as well as offices for sports and recreation staff.

To learn more and view drawings of the recreation center, see