Facility will serve ‘student holistic wellness’
UC Berkeley recently announced that its Recreational Sports Facility locker rooms will undergo a renovation in order to become more “gender-inclusive.”
The project is expected to cost $2.7 million and is funded by the school’s Wellness Initiative Fee, paid for by students as part of their annual fees.
With this, Berkeley becomes the first school in the UC system to create gender-neutral facilities of this size and scope. (Berkeley’s Memorial Stadium Fitness Center has offered smaller gender-neutral accommodations since 2014.)
Construction on the new 4,500 square foot space is expected to begin next spring, and will include more private showers, lockers and bathroom stalls. It will also serve as a gender-neutral access point to Spieker Pool.
The locker room renovation project is a joint effort between the Associated Students of University California, the Gender Equity Resource Center, and the Recreational Sports department on Berkeley’s campus.
“This locker room project not only symbolically affirms our campus values of inclusivity and access for all, but it provides a tangible service for students who are currently being underserved,” said Associated Students President Will Morrow in a statement posted on the university’s website “At the core of this project is a commitment to student holistic wellness—physical, mental, and emotional. In providing a safe and inclusive changing space, the RSF is adapting to better serve the wellness of all members of our campus community.”
It is unclear if there have been any actual complaints or problems associated with a lack of gender-neutral facilities on the Berkeley campus. Neither UC Berkeley’s Rec Sports spokesman Andy Davis nor GenEq director Billy Curtis responded to multiple requests for comment from The College Fix.