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WELSH-RYAN ARENA is an 8,117-seat multi-purpose arena in Evanston, Illinois , United States, on the campus of Northwestern University
Northwestern University
. It is home to four Northwestern Wildcats
Northwestern Wildcats
athletic teams: men\'s basketball , women\'s basketball , women's volleyball, and wrestling. It is located inside MCGAW MEMORIAL HALL, to the north of Ryan Field .

The building opened in 1952 as a replacement for Patten Gymnasium
Patten Gymnasium
, and was the site of the Final Four for the 1956 NCAA
NCAA
Men\'s Division I Basketball Tournament . It was extensively renovated in 1983, at which time the arena inside the building was renamed Welsh-Ryan Arena. At the conclusion of the 2016–17 basketball season, plans are to renovate and upgrade the arena as part of a $110 million project scheduled to be completed by late 2018. The renovation will displace the athletic programs that use the arena for the 2017–18 season.

For years, Welsh-Ryan Arena
Arena
was the smallest arena in the Big Ten Conference and the only conference facility that did not seat at least 10,000. With Rutgers University
Rutgers University
joining the conference in 2014, Welsh-Ryan became the second-smallest arena after the Louis Brown Athletic Center at Rutgers, which has a listed capacity of 8,000. Welsh-Ryan will once again become the smallest arena in the Big 10 Conference in 2018, with the listed capacity decreasing to 7,500 after renovations.

CONTENTS

* 1 History * 2 See also * 3 References * 4 External links

HISTORY

McGaw Memorial Hall was built through the generosity of Northwestern University trustee and donor Foster G. McGaw, founder of the American Hospital Supply Corporation. The building, named in memory of McGaw's father, Presbyterian minister and missionary Francis A. McGaw, to house sporting events and large-scale meetings. With a seating capacity of about 13,000, McGaw Memorial Hall was one of the three largest auditoriums in the Chicago area at the time of its construction. Designed by the architectural firm of Holabird & Root & Burgee and built of reinforced concrete, McGaw Memorial Hall contained 54,000 square feet of interior space. The lighting system, consisting of 180 mercury vapor lights, was said to simulate “pure daylight.”

Partitions, portable bleachers, and a removable basketball floor made the building suitable for a wide variety of uses. While the intent was to provide a space large enough to hold the entire student body of Northwestern University
Northwestern University
at once during convocations and other such campus occasions, the auditorium was also used by the North Shore Music Festival and, soon after its opening, by the Second Assembly of the World Council of Churches. This event, held August 15–30, 1954, featured a convocation address by U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower.

In 1983 Northwestern completed extensive renovations on the interior of the McGaw Hall. In recognition of major contributions to the work, the principal interior spaces of the building have been named Welsh-Ryan Arena
Arena
and the Ronald J. Chinnock Lobby. The arena itself was renamed in honor of the principal donor, Patrick G. Ryan, president of the Board of Trustees, and of his wife's parents, Mr. ">

* ^ "NU Will Begin Work Tuesday on Fieldhouse". Chicago Daily Tribune . April 29, 1951. Retrieved November 11, 2013. * ^ Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis Community Development Project. "Consumer Price Index (estimate) 1800–". Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis. Retrieved January 2, 2017. * ^ Dubin, Howard (August 15, 1952). "New McGaw Hall to Open for First Basketball Game". The Daily Northwestern . Northwestern University. Retrieved November 11, 2013. * ^ Greenstein, Teddy (13 June 2016). "Northwestern\'s Welsh-Ryan Arena
Arena
to receive long-overdue overhaul". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 22 December 2016.

EXTERNAL

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