Sacramento State will begin construction in spring 2017 on Science II, a state-of-the-art education building with cutting-edge teaching labs for the Biology and Chemistry departments. The California State University Board of Trustees approved the $91 million project on Wednesday, Nov. 18.
“We are grateful to CSU’s Board of Trustees for their approval of Sac State's new Science II building,” President Robert S. Nelsen says. “The new building will provide much-needed lab space and classrooms in fields where we are critically short on space. Today is a great day for our students and faculty.”
Sac State officials plan to issue a request for qualifications on Dec. 1, seeking applications from professionals with experience in developing science buildings. They hope to enter into a contract with a design-build team next spring, says Victor Takahashi, director of Facilities, Planning and Construction Services. The University will break ground on Science II by April 2017.
Plans are to build Science II on an existing parking lot adjacent to the Hornet Bookstore and near the University Union. Of the $91 million in approved funding, $71 million will come from the CSU. The other $20 million will be raised through donor contributions, including naming rights for the building, as well as campus capital reserves for academic facilities.
“Our current science facilities are outdated and deteriorating,” says Jill Trainer, dean of the College of Natural Sciences & Mathematics (NSM). “We need a new building to ensure safety and the ability to offer a modern curriculum.
“A modern design will create informal, collaborative spaces to support our students’ needs to study, conduct group work, and interact with faculty outside of class. The building will be designed to bring faculty and student research into the heart of our everyday activity,” she says.
Science II is the second project of the Campus Master Plan to get underway. Construction continues on Student Housing II, a 416-bed residence hall that will become an important component of the North Housing Village. The first student-occupants will move in just in time for the Fall 2017 semester.
Also in the works is a 62,000-square-foot addition to the University Union. Construction is expected to begin in January 2017. About the same time, University officials plan to break ground on an 1,800-space parking structure for the north end of campus.
Sequoia Hall, the current home of much of NSM, will be renovated to centralize and modernize laboratory space for the Natural Sciences departments.
Two Sacramento legislators who have supported Sacramento State’s efforts to build a state-of-the-art science facility shared their congratulations on the project’s approval.
“I applaud the CSU’s Board of Trustees approval to fund a new science building for Sacramento State,” Assemblymember Kevin McCarty says. “In a recent tour of Sequoia Hall, I saw firsthand the aging infrastructure that many of our STEM-major students use each day to achieve their academic goals. With this vote, future students will have access to a state-of-the-art science facility that will improve the quality of education at Sacramento State.”
State Sen. Richard Pan adds: “As a physician who majored in science in college, I know how important it is for science education to have facilities that are able to teach the most advanced information possible. … I am thrilled to hear that the funding has been approved for a very much-needed facility at Sac State. Science II will be a beacon to attract top students entering the STEM field. In addition, Science II will encourage youth to have the opportunity in Sacramento to learn through top-notch courses in STEM and health-related majors.”
– Dixie Reid
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