Falling at The Spot just got easier.

The Boulder climbing gym spent $180,000 to replace roughly 6,500 square feet of flooring, which is specially designed to withstand falls from the gym's bouldering walls.

The new floor, made of heavyweight open-cell urethane with a vinyl cover, is significantly thicker in some places, going from 6 inches to 16 inches over most of the gym.

Owner Dan Howley said the new flooring system from company Futurist Climbing should be more durable and last for six years. The Spot has around 15,000 square feet of total climbing terrain, all of which is for bouldering, or non-roped climbing.

"For us, it's quintessential," Howley said. "In a roped climbing gym, the ropes are your main protection. In a bouldering gym, every fall is a ground fall. (The floor) is technically more important than the walls themselves."

In the past, climbers have placed additional mats under their route for added protection. Howley said those mats aren't necessary with the new, thicker floor.

"It's much safer," he said. "It's consistent. It's flat. The gym's in the best shape ever."

The Spot, which wasn't actually closed during the floor replacement, will host a grand re-opening party on Aug. 28 to welcome back students and celebrate the end of summer.

For more information: http://thespotgym.com/

--Follow Sarah Kuta on Twitter: @SarahKuta.


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