Notre Dame to dedicate Irish Green on Oct. 2

by Dennis Brown


Irish Green, a 16-acre park on the south side of the University of Notre Dame campus, will be dedicated at 6:45 p.m. Oct. 2 (Thursday).

Underwritten with a gift from Notre Dame Trustee Fritz L. Duda and his wife, Mary Lee, Irish Green unfolds from the DeBartolo Performing Arts Center to Angela Boulevard, linking the campus to the community. It is populated by maple, elm, oak, beech and other trees and shrubs, and walkways lined with benches wind through the park.

Irish Green is a wonderful new gathering spot for members of both the University community and, as importantly, the greater Michiana community,said Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., Notre Dames president.We are grateful to Fritz and Mary Lee for making this beautiful addition a reality.

Irish Green also features an expansion of the terrace on the south side of the performing arts center for occasional film screenings and informal performances, and will include in coming years a landmark at the center of the park.

In addition to serving as a venue for outdoor receptions, picnics and recreational and other activities, Irish Green will provide a convenient route from many parts of the Notre Dame campus to Eddy Street Commons.

The Irish Green project establishes a critical linkage between both ‘town and gown,Duda said.This is an area that welcomes all who pass this way and provides a wonderful transitional park-like setting between the University and the exciting Eddy Street Commons development. We are honored to have a role in making it happen.

As chair of the Facilities Committee of Notre Dames Board of Trustees, Duda played a key role in making the Eddy Street Commons project a reality. A mixed-use development under construction on the corner of Eddy and Angela, the 24-acre Eddy Street Commons will include 90,000 square feet of ground-level retail and restaurant space on both sides of Eddy Street, 75,000 square feet of Class A office space on levels two through four of a building to be located at the southwest corner of Eddy and Angela Boulevard, 266 rental apartments located on levels two through four along Eddy Street, and a 1,281-car structured parking garage. Future phases of the project include two proposed Marriott hotels as well as a variety of for-sale residential housing options.

The Dudas established Irish Green in honor of their children, Leigh Ann, Lendy, Fritz Jr., Jim, Michael and Lindsey. Fritz Jr. and Michael are 1987 and 2005 Notre Dame graduates, respectively.

A member of Notre Dames Board of Trustees since 1997, Duda is chief executive officer of Genus Holdings Ltd., a Dallas-based investment company, and the owner and founder of the Fritz Duda Company, a privately held real estate development and investment firm. Prior to his election to Notre Dames Board, he served for six years on the Advisory Council for the Universitys School of Architecture.

The Dudas have provided both their time and financial support in assisting Notre Dame in its pursuit of excellence. Their previous benefactions include a significant endowment for undergraduate scholarships, the establishment of six faculty chairs, an honorarium of chairs at the Hesburgh Library reflecting pool, and support for the Alliance for Catholic Education program. Duda also has worked to assist Notre Dame in establishing a larger presence in Italy.

The Dudasgift for Irish Green is a component of the $1.5 billion Spirit of Notre Dame capital campaign. Announced last year, the campaign is the largest such endeavor in the history of Catholic higher education.

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