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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Duquesne University says the time has come for a complete revamping of the A.J. Palumbo Center.
The Duquesne Dukes were once a national power in men’s basketball and under coach Keith Dambrot, they’re making noise again in the Atlantic 10.
Come 2020, they’ll have a spiffy new home in which to show their stuff. Following a two-year funding campaign, the University is set to announce a $45 million overhaul of the Palumbo Center.
After the current season, the University will entirely gut the inside of the arena and significantly expand the footprint of the building, making it a center not only for men and women’s basketball and volleyball, but for athletics accessible to all students.
Renderings from the school are not the final design, but they provide an idea of what the new center may look like. They show luxury boxes for alumni to watch the games, broader open spaces and practice facilities for other sports, and a whole new facade wrapping around the building and fronting on Forbes Avenue.
Athletic Director Dave Harper said he’ll wait until Tuesday morning to announce the funders and other details.
“This will be a comprehensive re-imagining of the existing facility, not just for the men’s basketball team, but for the athletic program and the entire student body. People will be surprised at both the scope and vision,” Harper told KDKA-TV’s Andy Sheehan.
Construction will take a full year, meaning the basketball team will need to find a new home for the 2019-20 season. Sources say most of the home games will be played over on Fifth Avenue at PPG Paints Arena, already host to the city game every year when Duquesne takes on Pitt.
More than just a new home for the Duquesne Dukes basketball team, the revamped Palumbo Center is meant to be a giant leap forward for the University’s athletic program.