Out with the old

By By Ana Breton

By Ana Breton

The buildings responsible for teaching U students the science of seismology were torn down last week to make room for a new building that will be better equipped for an earthquake.

The Geosciences Services building and the Ore Dressing Lab, which were located northeast of Presidents’ Circle, were demolished and abated for hazardous materials because they did not meet safety regulations.

John Thompson, general contractor with Gramoll Construction, said the more than 30-year-old buildings were inadequate for student use.

“The steam lines were so old and there was not enough space,” Thompson said. “The fire marshal came and said it was going to be impossible to bring it up to current codes.”

The Frederick Sutton Geology and Geophysics Building will be built in place of the old facilities. It will include four floors and approximately 90,000 square feet–about 100 times larger than the old buildings.

The new building will be connected to the William Browning building on three floors and will act as the primary house for the geology and geophysics department of the College of Mines and Earth Sciences.

The design of the building will create a front entrance with a grand lobby for the

college to the east of the Engineering Mall, said Rick Johansen with campus facilities and planning.

“It will also enhance the

north edge of campus along First South,” Johansen said.

The $20-million project will provide 30 percent more lab space and will be made out of concrete instead of bricks to reduce vibrations.

“This will make the building more sensitive for the instruments it will house,” Thompson said.

Johansen said the design team for the new Sutton building is seeking to receive a Silver LEED rating

from the U.S. Green Building Council, which depends on the number of credits accrued in five green design categories: sustainable sites, materials and resources, energy and atmosphere, water efficiency and indoor environmental quality

The new building is expected to be completed in January 2009.

Meanwhile, the new Ivor Thomas Lab on Central Campus Drive has been completed. Faculty, staff and students who were working in the Ore Dressing Lab have been relocated to the new building.

Kim Peterson