LOOK: Florida Gators show off diagram for new ‘luxury’ dorms for football players

By Adam Silverstein
June 25, 2015

Florida Gators head football coach Jim McElwain is not taking his new role at one of the top programs in the country lightly. In fact, upon being hired by Florida, McElwain had a list of demands requests, which the Gators and athletic director Jeremy Foley have – to their credit – not wasted time implementing.

In addition to McElwain requesting that plans (and associated costs) for the yet-to-be-built indoor practice be significantly expanded, he also determined that the dorm rooms lived in by Florida football players – which have long been left without renovation or improvement – were simply not up to snuff.

Foley had casually mentioned that plans to renovate those dorms would commence at some point, and McElwain was proud to announce on Thursday that the Keys Residential Complex will be spruced up and ready to go as soon as the fall of 2015 with new “luxury” dorms for his athletes.

It should be noted that Keys will be renovated, not reconstructed, which is definitely a short-term fix for the Gators’ needs. To really compete with the living arrangements of other schools, Florida may need to go to a greater extreme in the future.

But UF’s investments into the program since McElwain took over go far beyond the living facility. The still-under-construction indoor practice facility’s space was greatly increased while its price tag was raised from approximately $12 million to nearly $17 million. The Gators are also expanding and rejuvenating the Office of Student Life at a cost of approximately $25 million, all while making plans to renovate the locker room and coaches’ offices and make improvements to the weight room.

Simultaneously, Florida is making additions to the Basketball Practice Complex and exploring options on improving Pressly Softball Stadium for the back-to-back national champion softball team. Of course, there is also the $60 million renovation to the Stephen C. O’Connell Center coming next spring.

Suffice to say, the athletics program is investing into facilities and living spaces, and it’s not going to stop with this offseason.


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