Exploratory Hall renovation and addition finishing construction
Exploratory Hall, formerly Science and Tech Building II, is currently undergoing a complete renovation, including new additions to the building.
According to project manager Alex Iszard, the addition is 50,000 square feet and is located between Exploratory Hall and Planetary Hall. The addition will connect the two buildings and allow students and faculty to more easily navigate between them.
The addition and renovations for the Science and Tech Building II have been ongoing since July 2008 when they were first authorized. Construction began in June 2011 and will be ready to use this August.
Originally, the building was supposed to be completed last August but delays in construction kept the building from finishing on time.
“The University decided to use Exploratory Hall as swing space for the occupants of Thompson Hall to allow for the completion of that building’s renovation project,” Iszard said. “We could not begin the renovation of Exploratory Hall until those occupants were able to move back into Thompson Hall.”
According to Iszard, the estimated total project cost is currently $54.5 million. This is higher than the original estimated cost of $53 million due to “unforeseen conditions within the renovation.”
The additions of this building will allow the College of Science to have more classrooms and laboratories for its students.
“The renovated building will include four university classrooms…new science teaching labs, a new greenhouse roof, as well as new computer classrooms for GIS, computational science, and mathematics instruction,” Iszard said.
The project’s website states that the building “completes the consolidation of the College of Science into one area of campus (David King Hall, Science and Technology I and II, Research Hall).”
Not only will this building have new updated technology but it will also have tutoring rooms that are specialized to help students with the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) accelerator program.
The Science and Technology Building II “provides modern science teaching labs to meet STEM instructional needs and support science education across the University,” read the project’s description.