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Thompson Center's highest beam is now in place

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On Thursday, October 15th, the Thompson Center "topped out" as the highest steel beam was put into place.

Sean Dougherty-USA TODAY Sports

If you've been on campus recently, you've noticed that the Thompson Center is coming along at an exciting pace. Last week, the construction reached a major new milestone as the highest beam was put into place.

Here is the full release from the school:

Highest Beam for Thompson Center Put in Place at Topping Out Ceremony

WASHINGTON - Legendary Hall of Fame Georgetown men's basketball coach John Thompson Jr. was joined by several close friends, former co-workers and current Georgetown coaches and staff late last week as the highest beam for the John R. Thompson Jr. Intercollegiate Athletics Center was put into place.

The "Topping Out" celebration took place on Thursday, Oct. 15 at noon at the Thompson Athletics Center construction site.

A "topping out" is a milestone in the project held when the highest level of the steel structure is reached. It is typical for a celebration to be held for the project.

Thompson Jr., along with his son, Georgetown Head Men's Basketball Coach John Thompson III, Director of Intercollegiate Athletics Lee Reed, Athletics Director Emeritus Frank Rienzo and long-time men's basketball trainer Lorry Michel were among the group of Georgetown coaches and staff who were there for the ceremony.

The Georgetown staff had lunch with the steel and concrete workers from Whiting-Turner before the "topping out" ceremony took place. Thompson Jr. and others signed the beam before it was lifted by a crane to the top of the building.

The Thompson Center construction is expected to be completed in July, 2016 and slated to open in August, 2016. The $61 million project will be completely supported through philanthropy. The four-story, 144,000-square-foot Thompson Center is being constructed adjacent to McDonough Arena and will include two large practice courts, locker rooms for men's and women's basketball, men's and women's soccer and men's and women's lacrosse. The facility will also include new offices for the men's and women's basketball staffs. All varsity teams will enjoy a new sports medicine area, new weight-training area and new equipment issue room. The new building also includes a Student-Athlete Academic and Leadership Center, numerous team meeting rooms and auditorium, as well as a multi-purpose function facility with adjoining courtyard. The building's main hallway will also include an interactive area displaying the history of Georgetown athletics and its prominent athletes and teams, both past and present.