Preparations Begin for Science and Tech Construction, Renovation

Posted: October 7, 2010 at 1:03 am, Last Updated: October 6, 2010 at 4:19 pm

By Dave Andrews

A rendering of the interior of the new addition.

The next phase of the Fairfax Campus facelift focuses on Science and Tech I and II. The project includes extensive renovation of Science and Tech II and the construction of an adjoining third building to form a “science complex.”

“The unique design of the building, in addition to a geology garden and outdoor amphitheater, will provide state-of-the-art teaching and learning facilities both inside and outside the classroom,” says Vikas Chandhoke, dean of the College of Science. “This is going to be a very exciting project.”

The renovation of Science and Tech II will also mean a reallocation of space to the departments within the College of Science. In all, 100,000 square feet of space will be renovated.

The 50,000-square-foot addition will connect the Science and Tech I and II buildings and include 20 biology, geology and environmental science and policy teaching labs. Constructing a third building that connects all three gives Mason the opportunity to improve the campus’ central infrastructure and upgrade a heavily used loading dock area.

The addition, at center, will be flanked by Science and Tech I, at right. Science and Tech II is seen at left.

The new building will be sited to the rear of Science and Tech I, closest to SUB II.

Those in the College of Science aren’t the only ones who should be excited. The new space will provide a vibrant learning environment, not only for science majors but for those taking general education courses as well.

“We’re all very anxious for the project to get under way,” Chandhoke says. “Our capacity to offer new lab-based classes has been very limited in recent years. This addition and renovation will give us the opportunity to expand our classes and provide our students and faculty with much-needed specialized labs and additional offerings.”

Throughout the month of October, contractors will be preparing the construction site for utility relocation. Fencing will go up, and alternative pedestrian paths will be made. A major utility reconnection will take place during the winter holiday break.

The second phase of the project includes constructing the addition. That is scheduled to begin in February 2011 and finish by October 2012.

Renovations to Science and Tech II, starting in November 2011, will be the final phase of the project. Substantial completion is slated for the spring of 2013.

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