Artist's rendering of the renovated Student Activities Center on Belknap Campus.
Artist's rendering of the renovated Student Activities Center on Belknap Campus.

UofL’s Board of Trustees has given the go-ahead for a $40 million renovation of the Swain Student Activities Center on Belknap Campus.

The board gave the approval at their meeting Oct. 8.

The facelift will add an additional 32,775 square feet to the building. The project will include an overhaul of the bookstore and updated lobbies, lounges and restaurants. Plans also call for upgrades to electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems, plus the removal of interior escalators and an exterior ramp.

The renovation will be financed through private sources, facility funds and a $9.6 million agency bond funded by the current student activities fee. Work is expected to begin in the spring and be completed by January 2018.

“Renovation of the Student Activities Center is a priority of the university as we continue to recruit the very best students from across the state,” said UofL President James Ramsey. “Academic success and student engagement are so closely intertwined that we are doing everything we can to provide the very best facilities for our scholars.”

Completed in 1990, the four-story, 365,666-square-foot SAC is headquarters for student organizations, student life and athletics and features restaurants, a movie theater, game room, lounge and workout facilities including eight racquetball courts, four basketball courts and a weight room.

The most recent student-centered facility to open on the Belknap Campus was the $37.5 million state-of-the-art student recreation center, which opened in October 2013.

For more information, contact John Karman at 502-852-1108 or

Cindy Hess
Communications Director Cindy Hess has oversight for day-to-day operations in media relations and covers prestigious scholars, the College of Education and Human Development and Brandeis School of Law. She reports to the Media Relations Director, has a heckuva good resume, and faithfully eats kale for lunch every day. Cindy has more than 25 years of experience in media relations, investor relations, marketing and corporate communications and is the unit’s only employee entrusted to buy tickets for lottery pools.