University of Wisconsin-River Falls officials announced recently the selection of BWBR to design the new Science and Technology Innovation Center at the western Wiscosnin campus. BWBR will lead a team of consulting architects and engineers for the project.
“We are very excited by this news,” said UW-River Falls campus planner Dale Braun. “BWBR brings strength and experience in designing undergraduate science instruction facilities that will be optimal for our program.”
The proposed SciTech facility is critical to addressing outdated science facilities and ensuring UW-River Falls is able to effectively educate students by providing an affordable and high-quality education, increasing undergraduate research opportunities, and meeting industry demand in Wisconsin’s high growth industries. The facility will have an impact on the entire campus, serving students from a wide range of majors.
“We are delighted that the design process for SciTech is moving forward with the selection of BWBR,” UW-River Falls Chancellor Dean Van Galen said. “We were very grateful for the $2 million in planning funds invested by the State of Wisconsin, so proceeding now in a timely fashion through the planning and design phase will be an important testament to our commitment to this project.”
The SciTech design process will be participatory, involving many stakeholders to ensure creation of the most effective state-of-the-art STEM facility for educating students. Local business and industry leaders also will be engaged to envision how SciTech can foster collaborative research, internship, and innovative partnerships throughout our region, Van Galen said. This process will benefit from BWBR’s expertise and leadership, he said.
“Universities across the country recognize that modernizing their aging learning environments is needed to satisfy the demand for STEM graduates and prepare students to enter the workforce,” said BWBR principal Stephanie McDaniel, AIA, LEED AP. “In a state where research and innovation is driving growth and near one of the most dynamic metro markets for engineering and technology, UW-River Falls is in an enviable position to create a marquee Science and Technology Innovation Center. We are excited to continue our work with the university community to shape this vision for STEM education.”
BWBR, an employee-owned firm, was selected by an interview committee composed of representatives of UW-River Falls, UW-System Administration and the State Division of Facilities Development and Management.
Braun anticipates design sessions beginning as early as April.