Designed by Ellerbe Architects of St. Paul, Minn., the Joyce Center - commonly referred to as the JACC - was conceived at the outset as a combination athletic-civic center.
The Center’s two distinctive domes, covered with a white vinyl roofing material stretched over steel ribbing, rise just east of Notre Dame Stadium. The JACC is both wider and longer than the famous stadium, and encloses more area than Houston’s Astrodome. The structure covers 10 acres of ground in total.
When the Irish hockey program moved to the brand new Compton Family Ice Arena in the fall of 2011, their previous Joyce Center rink was vacated and plans began for repurposing the space. Almost exactly one year later, the Castellan Family Fencing Center reopened those same doors as the nation’s newest collegiate fencing facility.
Where a hockey rink had previously been located, 15 high-quality fencing strips were laid down. The hockey locker rooms were converted into separate men’s, women’s, and coaches’ locker rooms. A team lounge, conference room and coaches office space completed the facelift, and the change of venue has helped the Irish fencing program to attract top-tier talent and competitions such as the Midwest Fencing Conference Championships and the NCAA Midwest Regional Qualifier.
Also in the fall of 2012, the volleyball team claimed a portion of the North Dome for a brand new practice facility. The facility features two courts, in addition to equipment storage space, and is conveniently just steps from the team’s locker room.
With the fencing program relocating, the women’s rowing team converted their previous gym space in the Walter Langford Gymnasium into their own erging practice room.