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University Council updated on construction

Binghamton University is entering an unprecedented era of growth with a number of new capital projects starting to take shape on campus.

“We will have more capital activity in the next five years than we have had at any other time in our history,” said Anthony Ferrara, vice president for administration. Ferrara provided the Binghamton University Council with an update on the status of projects in the planning stages or under construction at the board’s Dec. 17 meeting.

The list includes the ongoing renovations to the Innovative Technologies Complex (ITC), as well as planned improvements to the campus’ science buildings, engineering building and the University Union.

The Department of Bioengineering became the first occupant to move into the ITC facility this month. The second phase of the project is expected to be completed by the end of 2005 and will include space for the Division of Research, targeted technology incubators, laboratories, additional support services including workforce development and other key research services that support regional industry.

Renovations of the University’s Science 3 and 4 buildings will include refurbishing of the ground levels of both buildings and construction of an addition joining them at the plaza deck. The expansion will allow the University to expand and enhance the lab animal facility and support labs for researchers.

“The problem is that every one of those buildings is full and there is no available space,” Ferrara said. “All of these buildings are more than 30 years old.”

Renovations are also being planned for the Engineering Building, which houses the Watson School of Engineering and Applied Science, to provide appropriate HVAC and mechanical systems for the building’s research and instructional labs, Ferrara said.

Space is also an issue in the building, and campus planners are working to relocate support functions to other buildings on campus to free needed instructional space.

Work will also continue on the University Union. Plans include repair and replacement of the facility’s roof, as well as upgrades to make the 44-year-old structure more user friendly. When complete, the building will include conference and seminar space for faculty, staff and students.

Off campus, the University is moving forward with the Downtown Education and Community Development Center, Ferrara said. University planners are working to secure the downtown site and choose an architect and a construction supervisor for the project. The University received 43 bids from architects and 13 from construction companies, with plans to interview five candidates for each role.

The building upgrades are just a portion of the work that will be done on campus over the next five years,” Ferrara said.

“While we’re doing all those projects we will be making infrastructure improvements as well,” he said.
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Last Updated: 10/14/08