Upon returning to school, Mercerians found themselves wondering where Mercer University’s climbing tower had gone.
The climbing tower, which had been a feature of the campus for years, was taken down over the summer as a part of a campus-wide renovation and, according to Mercer wrestling coach Kevin Andres, there are no current plans to rebuild the tower.
The tower, which, aside from classes and the occasional free climb, saw little use and was difficult to find room for on Mercer’s increasingly crowded campus.
“Space is a premium on this campus,” said Andres. “Currently, there is not an ideal location to put it.”
This, and the fact that there was no broad student interest in the tower, is the reason there are no plans for the tower to return.
Even before the climbing tower’s removal, the university did not fund it—meaning that if students wanted to use it, they needed to sign up for the class or rent the tower.
With the previous system, the climbing tower was only accessible to students a few times a year. Even then, Andres explained that few students took advantage of the free climb times: only about 12 students climbed in a four hour period.
There is little chance that the main campus will ever see a return of the climbing tower. There is, however, a proposal for building a new sports complex off the main campus.
Even if the proposal is accepted, though, it will be years before it is completed.
If the proposal is accepted, Andres said he “would like to see the climbing tower or the ropes course come back” as a part of the new complex.