Celebrating Renovated Lab Space


Officials from University of Missouri-Kansas City and McCarthy Building Companies gathered to commemorate the completion of the first phase of a $21.5 million project to renovate and modernize 75,000 square feet of laboratory space in the Spencer Chemistry and Biological Sciences buildings.

“Renovating and expanding UMKC’s primary biology and chemistry teaching laboratories enhances our ability to offer outstanding research and academic degree programs in modern sciences at both the undergraduate and graduate level,” said Robert Simmons, UMKC associate vice chancellor of administration. “Modernizing outdated buildings benefits students, faculty and the community, while addressing functionality, enrollment capacity and deferred maintenance needs.”

Since the Spencer Building has been occupied during the renovation, the work is being performed in a phased approach. The first phase of construction, which began in January 2017, consisted of heavy demolition of the space that was built in 1968 and has not been renovated or updated since the 1980s. Upon completion of the entire project anticipated by July 2018 UMKC students and faculty will enjoy state-of-the-art spaces that meet current laboratory standards and modern technology requirements along with teaching areas conducive to a collaborative learning environment.

These labs serve chemistry and biological Sciences undergraduate and graduate students, as well as those who go on to professional schools or graduate studies in medical, dental, pharmacy, nursing, law, social work, environmental science, optometry, physical therapy and veterinary programs.

The project architect is PGAV Architects. Design team partners include mechanical, electrical and plumbing engineer M.E. Group; Leigh & O’Kane structural engineers; laboratory planner Research Facilities Design (RFD); civil engineer SK Design Group and The Sextant Group audio/visual and information technology consultants.

New common area at Spencer Chemistry Building




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