Tulane opens Devlin Fieldhouse

NEW ORLEANS — Tulane on Friday opened a restored basketball and volleyball facility as the Green Wave women’s basketball hosted Louisiana Tech in the season opener at the newly named Devlin Fieldhouse.

The school announced the naming of the 79-year-old building on Thursday.

Devlin Fieldhouse is named in honor of longtime supporters Bob and Kate Devlin.

“With the tremendous generosity of Bob and Kate Devlin, our efforts to restore to greatness one of the most historic campus venues in the nation is underway,” Tulane Athletic Director Rick Dickson said in a statement. “I’m thrilled for our fans to be able to walk in and experience the feeling of returning to Rose Bowl Gym.”

Architects from Gould Evans — a Kansas City firm that designed the Hertz Center and is now designing Yulman Stadium, Tulane’s new football stadium — and local firm Lachin-Oubre have been working with Tulane to complete enhancements and upgrades to the existing basketball and volleyball facility.

Phase 1 of the project began in the spring and includes new chair-back seating on the home side and above the student section as well as contoured bench seating throughout the rest of the arena, along with new concession and merchandise stands. The acoustical ceiling was removed to reveal the original steel structure and wooden ceiling. New lighting was installed. There is a new Gameday Club with bar seating bookended by lounges available to TAF members. The entry lobby will feature a new ticket booth, terrazzo flooring and a graphic wall.

Phase 2 is scheduled to begin after the basketball season and to be in place for the 2013 volleyball season. This phase will include increasing the number of restrooms plus the addition of new visitor locker rooms, officials’ locker room and a laundry facility.

The building originally opened on Dec. 15, 1933, and is currently the ninth oldest active basketball venue in the nation.