The UC Santa Barbara Recreation Center reopened Fitness Center 2 — the workout room located in the Multi-Activity Court — on April 4, over three years after its initial closure, nearly doubling the amount of weightlifting space.

Fitness Center 2 (FC2) contains six squat racks, three olympic weightlifting platforms and seven treadmills, as well as other cardio machines and additional weightlifting equipment.

Rec Cen patrons utilize the newly-reopened FC2. Alex Levin / Daily Nexus

FC2 initially closed on March 19, 2020, when the Recreation Center (Rec Cen) halted operations at the onset of COVID-19. Before the Rec Cen’s indoor spaces could reopen, UCSB Design, Facilities & Safety Services inspected all campus buildings to ensure proper air circulation in January 2021, according to Interim Director of Recreation Cathy Czuleger.

FC2 was among several Rec Cen spaces that initially failed the airflow inspections. However, unlike other workout areas that reopened in the summer of 2021 after minor improvements, FC2’s heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) issues required lengthier repairs, Czuleger said.

“The repair needs for FC2 encompassed total HVAC system replacement, not just tweaks and simple repairs like the other spaces,” Czuleger said in an email statement to the Nexus. “The reopening was delayed due to the time it has taken to get through a bid process for a large campus project, and the current delay of not being able to get delivery on the needed HVAC units themselves.”

“This is due to the global supply chain issues still wreaking havoc from COVID-19 shutdowns,” she continued.

Czuleger added that the current HVAC solution allowing FC2 to be open is only temporary.

“Current reopening of FC2 is due to a temporary repair performed by the contractor that will install brand new HVAC units upon their arrival in August 2023,” Czuleger said. “Since we already had a contract in place with this company, they were allowed to perform this temporary repair to allow the space to reopen.”

The room’s reopening nearly doubled the amount of weightlifting space in the Rec Cen, largely resolving the complex’s overcrowding problems.

“For once I can finally say we don’t have an overcrowding issue, because it got eliminated so fast from the opening,” third-year communication major and Rec Cen employee Kylie Chang said. “There is barely an overcrowding issue now.”

A version of this article appeared on p. 3 of the April 13, 2023, print edition of the Daily Nexus.


Alex Levin
Alex Levin (he/him) is the University News Editor for the 2023-24 school year. Previously, Levin was the Assistant News Editor for the 2022-2023 school year. He can be reached at