After years of planning and a successful fundraising campaign, the University of Iowa and its Athletics Department dedicated the P. Sue Beckwith, M.D., Boathouse in September 2009.
The new home for the UI rowing team -- the largest Hawkeye women's team -- is located on the bank of the Iowa River in Iowa City's Terrell Mill Park, near the Mayflower Residence Hall on North Dubuque Street, across the river from City Park.
The building is named for UI alumna P. Sue Beckwith, M.D., a renowned surgeon in Des Moines, who made a $1 million leadership gift to the University of Iowa Foundation to support the campaign to build the boathouse. It is the first UI building named solely for a woman benefactor.
The boathouse, designed to withstand flooding, features a large ergonomics room that houses the UI rowing team's rowing machines, four large boat bays, a state-of-the-art rowing tank that features moving water at various training speeds, locker room and medical-training spaces, and a terrace and community room that can be used by university and community groups. In addition to the UI rowing team, the building houses the UI men's club rowing team and the Old Capitol Rowing Club, a community-based rowing organization administered by UI Recreational Services.
The total cost of the project was $7.2 million, of which more than $1.7 million was raised through private gifts to the UI Foundation from individuals and organizations in support of Hawkeye Athletics. As part of a partnership, UI Recreational Services provided $1 million; the remaining balance was paid through Athletics Department operating funds.
The 20,000-square-foot Beckwith Boathouse is the first LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)-certified building on the University of Iowa campus, a designation reserved for energy-efficient buildings. It features an efficient geothermal heat pump system and daylight harvesting, and was built with significant use of local and recycled materials. The land for the building is being leased to the UI by the City of Iowa City.
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