DETROIT -- Wayne State University's Board of Governors approved Wednesday plans for the construction of a $25 million arena for Wayne State's men's and women's basketball teams on the west side of its athletic complex. The approved plan includes construction of a 70,000 square-foot arena near the intersection of Warren and Trumbull avenues with seating capacity for approximately 3,000 fans, office space and locker room areas for both WSU's men's and women's basketball teams, a concessions area and other ancillary spaces. The arena will be ready for play in the 2021-2022 basketball season.
"Our outstanding student-athletes have played basketball at Wayne State for a century, but never in an arena facility designed for basketball," said Kim Trent, chair of WSU Board of Governors. "I am thrilled that they will soon have the best amenities around. A special thanks to Governor Sandy Hughes-O'Brien who has been a passionate proponent of this project."
For more than 50 of the 100 years, Wayne State basketball games have been played in the Matthaei Center, which was constructed in 1965 as part the city's bid to bring the 1968 Olympics to Detroit. At the time the Matthaei was constructed, Wayne State University did not sponsor any women's athletic programs, and today lacks the infrastructure to properly accommodate the athletic teams and the increase in additional student activities. Seating capacity in the new facility will more than double the current 1,131 capacity of Matthaei's main gym.
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