AMES, IOWA – Iowa State University announced today construction plans for a 16,000-square foot indoor tennis practice complex, which was recently approved by the City of Ames and the state Board of Regents. The complex, which is scheduled to open in December of 2016, will be named the Bruce McKee Indoor Tennis Complex after Des Moines attorney, Bruce W. McKee.
The new two-court performance center will be dedicated exclusively to the Iowa State women’s intercollegiate tennis program and will include a team lounge, locker room and two hard surface courts. The facility will be located immediately adjacent to the Sukup Basketball Complex in west Ames.
Currently, the Cyclones practice and compete at the south Ames Racquet & Fitness center and the Forker Tennis Courts. The Cyclones will continue to use the Forker Tennis Courts for competitions and practice (weather permitting) and will use Life Time Fitness in Des Moines for hosting indoor tennis matches during the winter months.
McKee, a longtime athletics supporter and 1956 graduate of Iowa State, provided a $500,000 lead gift for the complex. He is a native of Montezuma, Iowa and a partner in the Des Moines law firm of McKee, Voorhees & Sease.
“Being a part of this exciting project allows me to support two areas that have been lifelong passions of mine: tennis and Iowa State Athletics,” McKee said. “The construction of this tennis complex will undoubtedly take Iowa State tennis to a higher competitive level than where it has previously been. This facility will give current and future Cyclone tennis players a place to train that is among the best in the Big 12 Conference.”
Local developer Dickson Jensen is building the facility on his property and leasing it to the Iowa State Athletics Department, with the lease including options for the university to purchase the facility. The center, which is under construction, will be on one acre of land and cost approximately $2 million to construct.
“We are very excited to be building the Bruce McKee Indoor Tennis Complex for use by our tennis team,” Iowa State Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard said. “The new complex will provide our student-athletes a state of the art tennis facility that is solely dedicated to our women’s team. We are so fortunate that Bruce shares our vision and passion for tennis at Iowa State.”
“This is a great day for the future of our tennis program,” Iowa State head coach Armando Espinosa said. “The facility will be our own and give us the opportunity to practice on our own schedules in a first-class performance center. It will allow us to continue developing our current student-athletes and will provide us with a great tool in recruiting prospective student-athletes.”