Please, don’t call it DePaul Arena. Granted, the new McCormick Place Event Center *will* be the new home for DePaul University’s men’s and women’s basketball beginning with the 2017-18 season, and DePaul has contributed some $70 million to the project, but expect the versatile new facility to be much more than a home-court hoops venue.
Designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, the 300,000-square-foot Event Center is just one part of the project to turn the McCormick Place campus into a major entertainment district, which includes adding hotel rooms, offices, and retail space to the neighborhood of North America’s largest convention center.
The 10,000-seat facility will play host to a variety of functions, with an entire floor of event space located one story below street level. Hosting music concerts, trade shows, plus large business meetings and conventions, will put the facility to year-round use.