Health, Wellness and a new Hotel
In less than 24 hours Sept. 11-12 Rowan University and its partners along Rowan Boulevard celebrated two major milestones – the openings of a comprehensive campus Wellness Center and a Courtyard by Marriott Hotel.
Though designed, funded and built separately, the projects complement one another as Rowan and Glassboro evolve for the 21st Century.
The Wellness Center at Winans Hall, a $4.4 million makeover of the former University bookstore building, now offers a wide array of health and wellness services including preventive and emergency medical care, mental health and drug/alcohol counseling, and heated ambulance bays.
Whereas previously students received health and wellness services in different locations, the new center unites all Rowan health care – Student Health Services, Counseling and Psychological Services, Healthy Campus Initiatives and Emergency Medical Services – in a gleaming, central facility.
Addressing students, faculty and staff during a grand opening ceremony Sept. 11, President Ali Houshmand said the goal was simple: to build a comprehensive wellness center that makes students feel comfortable.
“Academics is important but it’s not the only important thing,” Dr. Houshmand said. “We want students to feel they have a home away from home.”
To that end, he said, the Wellness Center was designed as a casual space that offers important services. All on one floor, it has a flowing, walk-through layout, private computerized sign-in stations, and two student lounges.
“It’s a true wellness center,” said Vice President for Student Life/Dean of Students Richard Jones. “Students can come see a doctor, a mental health counselor, or they can take a class.”
Touring the facility, sophomore Jenna Glassman of Philadelphia said the design really does appeal to her.
“It’s open and welcoming,” said Glassman, 19, a health promotion and fitness management major. “It makes me feel they’re looking out for my well-being.”
A Downtown Destination
Fewer than 24 hours later and just a few blocks away, the Courtyard by Marriott hotel, the latest addition to Rowan Boulevard, officially opened for business.
Calling it the “gateway to Rowan Boulevard,” Glassboro Mayor Leo McCabe said the 129-room hotel, the borough’s first in a century or more, was long overdue.
“We wanted downtown Glassboro to be a destination, and now we have it,” McCabe said.
Rowan Boulevard is a public-private-public partnership, New Jersey’s largest municipal redevelopment project, a $300 million investment that’s been almost fully funded by the private sector. Located at 325 Rowan Boulevard, the hotel will be operated as a Marriott franchise, owned by SORA Hotel Renewal Entity, LLC and managed by Shaner Hotel Group of State College, Pennsylvania.
One-third of a mile in length, Rowan Boulevard connects Route 322 (Mullica Hill Road) with High Street about one block north of Main Street. All buildings along the Boulevard are privately held so owners pay local property taxes, even on buildings leased by the University.
The Boulevard’s first anchor, a Barnes & Noble Collegiate Superstore that opened in 2011, has since been joined by the Rowan Boulevard Apartments complex, the Whitney Center, a multi-use building with retail on the first floor and student housing above, and, now, the Marriott.
A luxury destination, the four-story hotel features an indoor heated pool and spa, outdoor courtyard with gas fire pit, and plush modern lobby featuring GoBoard®, a 55-inch LCD touch screen TV that presents local information, maps, weather, and news for tourists and travelers.
In between the Courtyard and the Barnes & Noble, the mixed-use Enterprise Center will officially open October 15. The Enterprise Center will feature first floor retail space and house Rowan’s College of Graduate and Continuing Education at the front of the building and a multi-level parking garage at the rear.
The Whitney Center, which opened in 2011 with Prime American burger restaurant as its first retail outlet, now also features Green Zebra, a healthy eatery, Forever Young Emporium, which sells shoes, gifts, accessories and apartment décor, and, most recently, Sun Bank, Ry’s @ Rowan bagel shop and Yogo Factory yogurt, a self-serve dessert parlor.