Riverfront astroturf is not for PE classes or club sports. Is it part of the UO Foundation’s secret Tracktown 2021 plans?

UO wants the Eugene planning commission to give it the right to put 4 astro-turf playing fields with lights just south of the Willamette river. They claim this is for intramural Rugby and PE and Rec classes.

I don’t buy it. I don’t have the Rugby participation data, but it’s not New Zealand. For Fall 2017 UO had a total of 7 sections of PE classes that need playing fields such as flag football, ultimate, and soccer with a total of 166 students. (In comparison there were 27 sections of Yoga type classes). These are 1 credit sections that meet for 2 hours a week. That’s a grand total of 14 hours a week on the playing fields.

These classes are not exactly surging in popularity among UO students. In Fall 2012 there were 9 sections. And while PE and Rec already have 2 lit astroturf fields by the Rec Center, they have no sections scheduled at night.

So what is this really about? I’m guessing it’s part of the UO Foundation’s top secret planning for the 2021 Track & Field Championships.

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8 Responses to Riverfront astroturf is not for PE classes or club sports. Is it part of the UO Foundation’s secret Tracktown 2021 plans?

  1. New Year Cat says:

    Ecologically such a bad idea.

  2. IM participant says:

    It strains credulity based on stature, but is it possible that the editor has not historically tended to be involved in team-sports athletic endeavors? Looking at PE credit might be a good way to build a conspiracy theory, but it has little to do with field use. Almost all field use is by intramural and club sports, not by PE (who registers for that stuff anyway?). This includes faculty and staff and not just students. The fields in question are in particular used by softball and ultimate. They are also ankle twisting nightmares of fairly low quality. I also believe that the soccer fields next to the rec center tend to be over subscribed, especially at night. So, upgraded fields, which already exist on this site and are not a new use, would probably help serve that need. Lord knows we need to provide as many venues as possible to encourage people to move around. Hard to imagine any use as part of a secret planning process. It is a clear university need.

    • uomatters says:

      Your personal attack on my athletic bowling skills would be defamation per se, if only it were false.

      In any case, what little data I’ve been able to find so far indicates a long a persistent national decline in participation in team sports (even ultimate!) offset at least in part by an increase in yoga, individual sports, and of course video games.

    • Dog says:

      Always better to substitute data for belief, so here is some

      1. Oversubscribed soccer fields next to Rec Center – when the
      weather is good (spring, early Fall) I have directly observed this.

      2. Intramural activity – yes I agree this is the main use of any UO field any where

      3. Club Sports/Community use – once upon a time when I was physically able, I engaged in various kinds of community sports on various UO fields on weekends when they were usually available – but even at the end of my pseudo-bowling-on the field I noticed a decline in this particular use.

      All that said, it would be really good to get actual data on field usage before making decisions based on personal perception or anecdote.

      Of course, we are not going to do that.

    • WWFLODI2020 says:

      This may have been covered in the Senate but another field to keep replacement nike-turf ‘donations’ from going to the landfill is all well and good but can we think just a minute about that location? It is right up against the Willamette assuming it is not loam that cannot be built on I can think of at least half a dozen other uses other than giant LED lights spewing their pollution all over the river, paths, fish, birds, etc. for the use of a couple people a couple times of year kicking a ball. I walked past the courts by the Rec nearly multiple times nearly every night and I literally never saw a scheduled game–bandcamp in the fall? Yes. beep beep beep–only half a dozen pockets of students sitting around and a few people kicking the ball in a pickup game.

      What ever happened to… couldn’t we… why concrete…. what if we had an inspiring master design for the entire waterfront space… WWFLODI2020?
      (What Would Frederick Law Olmsted Do In the year 2020). This area could be redeveloped to link our campus and the new Nike campus back to the river. Even Day Island (east especially) is still little more than an brown field under the levee.

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