If you’ve been to the COS campus recently, you’ve seen the massive two-story skeleton of a brand new science complex going up where Greenshields and Abner Weed halls used to be.

If you’ve been to the COS campus recently, you’ve seen the massive two-story skeleton of a brand new science complex going up where Greenshields and Abner Weed halls used to be.

According to COS Facilities Director Mark Healy, the new building is completely state funded through a general bond passed in 2006.

“There’s absolutely no local contribution,” Healy said. “This building has been in the works since 2004, when it became apparent that the life science building was not up to snuff.”

Healy said the current science building was finished in 1968 and has ventilation and drainage issues. The college had considered modernizing the building, however that proved to be more costly than anticipated. “Relocatable” classrooms were also ruled out because of their short life span.

After three tries, the state approved COS’ application for the new $12.6 million building, Healy said.

The new complex will house six labs and two large lecture rooms, Healy said. It will also have a large glazed atrium to house plant material, and a garden area that will extend outside.
Hydraulic heating will help keep the sidewalks ice-free in the winter.

“The building will be very, very energy efficient,” Healy added. “We used a lot of sustainable products.”

In the lobby, there will be a “dashboard” to display the building’s performance, such as water, electricity and propane usage and the amount of air exhausted and taken in.

Randy Hill Construction from Chico was the low bidder for the project. Local subcontractors including Ray Mac and Cone Plumbing are also involved in the building’s construction.

It is anticipated that the building will be finished in July, 2012. Healy said the college is still not sure what use the old science building will be put to.