Construction is scheduled to begin in May on the building called the Convocation Academic Center, which will sit on a tract bounded by Short, Palm and Stroelitz streets. The site, where Xavier President Norman Francis played hardball as an undergraduate, is currently used as a parking lot.
Manning Architects of New Orleans and Populous of Kansas City, Mo., are architects for the 93,000-square-foot structure, which is expected to cost about $25 million and house classrooms, offices and meeting spaces.
Pile driving is scheduled to start this week, Francis said.
The building's chief feature will be an arena for men's and women's basketball and women's volleyball games. With 4,500 seats, its capacity will be more than three times that of the building known as The Barn, which has housed these matches since 1937.