Director of Athletics Dr. Brandon Martin announced the UMKC Athletics department will undergo several enhancements and upgrades to the facilities on the Kansas City campus. Thanks to a lead gift by the Sunderland Foundation and other private funds secured, the Swinney Center and the surrounding competition and training spaces will undergo $1.5 million in facility upgrades.

Swinney Center is the home of the Roos men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball programs, and the sports medicine and sports performance departments.

“The Sunderland Foundation is committed to the well-being and advancement of Higher Education,” said Kent Sunderland, President and Trustee of Sunderland Foundation. “Special things are happening within the athletic department at the University of Missouri–Kansas City under the guidance of Dr. Martin and we want to be a part of that. We are excited to donate funds that will focus on athletic facility improvements to better the student-athlete experience for years to come.”

The first phase of renovations, which is scheduled to begin June 2019, will consist of branding enhancements, space restructuring and increased fan amenities in the Swinney Center North Lobby. The renovations will include branding showcasing the history and pride points of UMKC Athletics. This initial phase will also include exterior graphics and signage highlighting student-athletes, coaches, and messaging that represent the values and goals of the department.

“You have one opportunity to make a first impression and you have to consider how to design it in order to showcase your program’s success, history and traditions,” commented Dr. Martin. “UMKC Athletics has a unique story and it is imperative that we find creative ways to display this history — going beyond a traditional hall of fame so the entire facility elevates and communicates the university’s brand.”

The Swinney Center game court will be re-designed. The iconic Kansas City skyline, the blue and gold colors and the traditional Roo mascot will all be part of the playing surface.

The second phase, which is scheduled to begin in late summer, involves enhancements that will occur in dedicated areas that house the sports medicine and sports performance units. Providing state-of-the-art facilities to service the student-athletes’ medical and nutritional needs is one of the department’s main initiatives. There will be a new refueling station, along with increased training and work space, signage and storage.

“Our new facility renovations and upgrades reflect our commitment to providing our student-athletes with the resources and support necessary to compete at the highest level,” said Dr. Martin.