A rundown of the Schmidt Family Complex’s initial construction

After lingering in the design process for more than a year, construction of the athletic complex is now in full swing


Construction workers stand on the future site of the Schmidt Family Complex near the FAU Stadium. Joshua Giron | Photo Editor

Alexander Rodriguez, News Editor

The future site of the Schmidt Family Complex for Academic and Athletic Excellence is finally occupied by cranes and construction works, as supervisors work quickly to meet deadlines.


The complex will benefit student athletes from FAU’s athletic department, as well as students in all academic programs.


Construction was supposed to begin last summer, according to FAU’s flight plan released back in October 2016.

A view from the Breezeway showing the final design of the Schmidt Family Complex. Courtesy of HKS Architects

But a Feb. 2 tweet from FAU President John Kelly declared “construction was underway” at the beginning of 2018 for the new facility along with pictures of workers on the site just west of the stadium.


DPR construction is in charge of assembling the 121,000-square-foot building, which will include classrooms for the MBA sports management program, offices for coaches, study lounges, and weight training rooms.

The final design of the training room that will be located inside the new Schmidt Family Complex. Courtesy of HKS Architects

For more than a year, the new facility was in the design and pre-construction process.


“This is a phased project and we are on schedule to deliver phase one later this summer as planned,” said Beth Hernandez, regional communication leader for DPR construction. “The next phase is scheduled to begin right after phase one is complete.”


Phase one consists of the renovation currently underway at the FAU Stadium. According to the DPR construction website, that phase will be completed this year.


Phase two includes building offices and practice rooms next to the stadium. This phase will also integrate the first floor of Parking Garage 3 into the facility.


The DPR construction website states that additional master planning for the indoor practice field will be conducted in the future.

The final design of the renovated locker room inside the FAU stadium. Courtesy of HKS Architects

“The project was changed to [a] phased plan to minimize disruption,” FAU spokesman Joshua Glanzer said. “Phase Two will include the practice fields, and it should take about a year to complete Phase Two. It should start in the late summer/early fall of this year and should wrap around the same time [summer] in 2019.”


President of the Schmidt Family Foundation Richard Schmidt said he is constantly updated on the construction progress of the new facility.


“The delays are a natural result of plan revisions as the project is continually improved from the original concept,” Schmidt said. “I would estimate the final completion to be delayed about [a] year from the original plan, which is about normal for projects of this size.”


The new athletic facility is named after Richard and his wife Barbara Schmidt. The Schmidt family donated $16 million to FAU for the new project, which is the largest single donation FAU has ever received.


Along with the Schmidt family donation, two other financial institutions will pay for the new facility: the FAU Foundation, which has raised $33.5 million, and university funds, which set aside $6.5 million for the project, according to the original plans.

A view of the final design of the Schmidt Family Complex that will be extended from Parking Garage Three with two outdoor practice fields in the back. Courtesy of HKS Architects

According to a major project status report, the project’s budget was revised on March 14, now listing the the complex’s construction budget at $45 million, $5 million more than previous estimates.


While the new facility is under construction, athletes and staff will continue to utilize the Tom Oxley Athletic Center, located on the west side of the Boca campus which has served the 21 sports offered at FAU since 2001.


The rapid growing athletic department at FAU has outgrown the Oxley center, making the new, larger facility invaluable and attractive to prospective student athletes.


“We hope that the academic performance of student athletes will be enhanced,” Schmidt said. “As the athletic prowess of the Florida Atlantic manifests itself and raises the quality of the college experience here on all levels.”

Alexander Rodriguez is the news editor of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected] or tweet @AARodriguezz93.