Construction of the third Engineering Science building this December is expected to make a significant impact on the university, its students and the already suffering parking condition.
The Engineering Science building, referred to as “Engineering III,” is expected to be completed in 18 to 22 months and will house classrooms, faculty offices and research facilities within 52,000 square feet of space.
The building will stand on half of what is currently Lot 10 and will eliminate 150 to 200 parking spaces. Assistant Director of Parking Bob Sundberg said he is unsure how problems on the east side of campus will be solved.
“We are currently discussing what to do to improve parking on campus,” he said. “We are looking at providing stack parking and valet service on various lots around campus and in the long term, building new parking structures.”
The state of California is completely funding the construction for $31.5 million and allotting $1,419,000 more for furnishings and equipment. An additional $4,128,000 will be provided by the College of Engineering.
Martha Levy, director of capital development, believes the new three-story building will create a positive educational impact on the campus, with its two classrooms holding 150 and 45 seats, respectively, and a 10,000-square-foot nanofabrication facility for teaching as well as research.
“Not only will the building be state-of-the-art but it will provide relief space in some of the older buildings such as Engineering II,” she said. “There will be more classrooms and computer labs available for use, and the university will be able to recruit new faculty.”
Planning began in the mid-1990s and the building was approved in 1997, said Matthew Tirrell, dean of the College of Engineering.
“The building will provide a more modern, cheerful and effective learning environment,” he said. “Outdoors will be a common place, which we hope will provide congenial places for students to study and congregate.”
“The planning for the building happened in three stages: First the need for the building was expressed by the College of Engineering, then the budget was established and approved by the state and finally the building was designed,” Tirrell said.
An open bid will begin this week to determine the company in charge of construction.
“As long as the building is not overbid, construction will begin as planned and without problem,” Levy said.