The university announced recently through a College Marketing press release the plans to build a track and field.
Having this new facility will no doubt help improve UVU’s growing athletics program, but the plans call for building the track and field over the wetlands located north on campus. These wetlands provide a research area for the biology department, and they show UVU’s commitment to the environment.
Unfortunately, the wetland destruction will not cause much outrage. Students and faculty seem apathetic toward the wetlands or don’t know their purpose — if they know the wetlands exist at all.
UVU campus was likely built over such wetlands, and the need to preserve the small area of wetlands, which is no larger than an acre, seems irreverent, considering the great wetlands located around Utah Lake.
Although the environmental impact of destroying this ecosystem is likely small, it brings into question the university’s priorities. When UVSC was making its transition to university, it promised the community that it would stick to its root: keeping the trades, leaving enrollment open and retaining small class sizes.
While these wetlands are not the trades, they are still something that has been with the university for a while, and one of the things that adds individuality to the school.
With the wetlands gone, and a track and field in its place, it brings UVU one step closer to being just like all of the other universities out there.