U. City moves toward a brighter future, beginning with the gym floor

Ariyanna Wilkes, Staff Writer

Instead of the previous dull light brown color with some barely noticeable yellow accents, the gym floor now has dark brown wood stained with contrasting lighter browns, making the design stand out.

“We went with a look that was more traditional, and if you notice on the floor we used stains, different color stains, to develop the floor design as opposed to painting lines all over the floor,” Michael Peoples, principal and director of secondary education, said. “The gentleman who worked on our floors, who does these around the city, said that this is their favorite design.” 

In preparation for the 2022–23 academic year, several other changes were made to the building’s rooms, doors and halls, giving them brighter colors and elements of school pride. However, the gymnasium floor has undergone the most significant alteration thus far.

“I love the new design,” John Bass, physical education teacher and head baseball coach, said. “The two tones, the black, I mean I really like it. I think this is one of the best sports gyms in St. Louis.”

However, the gym floor was not only prompted for aesthetic reasons; it was also the final establishment of our school branding and logo. After years of previous administrators putting off the cease and desist, Peoples took the initiative and got the gym redone.

“It was some time [ago], maybe 10 to 15 years, the school district received a cease and desist order to stop using the ‘U’ logo from the University of Miami,” Peoples said. “So I pushed for us to rebrand the floor to be consistent with our actual school logo, the official ‘UC.’”

Even when it was still in development, it brought no disruption to gym classes. Students easily got used to the new method of entering the gym.

“It was quite tedious [getting to and from the gym] just because I have to go all the way from the third floor to down here, but I don’t mind it,” Zofia Reed, senior, said. 

The overall reviews have been largely positive.

“The new floor definitely looks better,” Lee Williams, junior, said. “I think it looks more clean and shiny.”

Some prefer the older floor.

“Honestly, [the floor] was fine as it was,” Reed said. “I feel like there is too much brown in it [now], and the color coding could have been done a little bit better. But as long as it serves its purpose.”

The feedback has reached Peoples and the administration. 

“We have received very positive feedback about the floor from current students, alumni and the community,” Peoples said.

In just a few months, the gymnasium has gone a long way. It appears to have a promising future.

“[There will be] more to come, this is just the beginning of the transformation to the gymnasium,” Peoples said.