University of Connecticut to Break Ground on New Basketball Development Center

(April 15, 2013) – On the heels of an exciting week for the University of Connecticut’s women’s basketball program that ended with a title, the University’s basketball programs are preparing for another momentous day in their history. The groundbreaking for the new, Populous-designed Basketball Development Center at the University of Connecticut has been scheduled for 1 p.m. on Tuesday, April 16.

“This will be a very special day – for the athletic department, the basketball programs and the University of Connecticut – as they begin construction on what is sure to be one of the great training facilities in collegiate athletics,” said John Fickel, Populous Project Manager for the Center. “When the Basketball Development Center opens, it will be a tremendous asset to the campus and crucial to ensuring the continued success of the University of Connecticut’s storied basketball programs and the development of their student-athletes.”

The $35 million Basketball Development Center, scheduled to open in 2014, has been funded in large part by generous support from alumni and current staff, including men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie. The 78,000 square foot facility will be one of the largest basketball training facilities on a college campus and will provide student-athletes with state-of-the-art resources, including film rooms, strength training, sports medicine, hydrotherapy, dining, academic support and practice courts.

Located on the site of the old Memorial Stadium, adjacent to Gampel Pavilion, the facility will provide an efficient experience for basketball student-athletes, allowing them to practice, train, study and dine in one location. Key features of the facility include separate practice courts for each team that consist of one full size court and two half courts per team with a dedicated free-throw shooting basket. In addition, strength training with a large weight room with free weights, machines and cardiovascular equipment along with rehabilitation and hydrotherapy spaces and a full dining facility will ensure the continued health and wellness of players. The facility also boasts a dedicated hall of fame, coaching staff facilities and student lounges. The facility was designed by Populous and the contractor is Daniel O’ Connell and Sons, Inc.

“The design incorporates both the program’s basketball history and architectural style of the campus while introducing glass, steel and bold graphics to provide a modern expression,” said Fickel. “The Basketball Development Center will be an exciting and impactful addition to the campus experience and Populous is gratified to be involved.”

The groundbreaking, which is open to the public, will be held behind Gampel Pavilion. Parking for the event will be available in the South Garage, adjacent to the UConn Co-Op. The groundbreaking ceremony will include brief remarks from UConn President Dr. Susan Herbst, Athletic Director Warde Manuel, Men’s Basketball Coach Kevin Ollie and Women’s Basketball Coach Geno Auriemma, among others. Questions regarding the groundbreaking should be directed to Art Sorrentino of the University of Connecticut Foundation- (860) 486-6926,  To learn more about the Basketball Development Center, visit

For additional information, please contact:
Annie Hellweg
Telephone: 816 329 4313

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