Providence College: Ruane Friar Development Center

Providence, RI
Construction Cost: $30,000,000
Area / Square Feet: 58,000 gsf
Occupancy Date: September 2018

Few programs have had the success and impact that the basketball programs have had on the unique culture of Providence College. As the program grew and achieved success it became clear that the college needed state-of-the-art spaces to support its student-athletes.

The new Ruane Friar Development Center (RFDC) houses practice, locker room and office facilities for basketball, as well as training and recovery facilities for the school’s wider athletics program. Beyond athletics, the RFDC creates a destination on campus that captures the unique spirit of Friartown: “Us. We. Together. Family. Friars.” The center also houses an expanded career service center, serving both the student and the student-athlete. The center represents the legacy and future of all Friars on campus: students, players, professors, coaches, supporters, alumni and community members — the Friar family. The challenge was to express through design the unique culture and aspirations of Providence College and its integrated approach to intercollegiate athletics and college-level education. Therefore, while daylight and openness are key factors in the high-performance design, these attributes also figuratively represent student-athletes performing at their best.

The RFDC is the first of two phases: Phase I provided this state-of-the-art facility for student-athlete development; Phase II consists of a connecting concourse that rejuvenates an underused space between two existing structures, creating an indoor street that includes a renovation of student support spaces and will serve as the new “heart” of the overall campus.

Ruane Friar

Judge's Comments

“Bold, simple forms lead to highly crafted details and a sophisticated interior finish and brand integration.” — Mark Williams

“Restraint in not over-branding the project was refreshing.” — Arash Izadi


“The sweeping cornice and outboard shading provide a thoughtful exterior.” — Brent Tippets