Oregon State University-Cascades has unveiled plans for a new 50,000-square-foot academic building to bolster its expanding Bend campus.
Academic Building 2, as it’s now known, will be across the campus roadway from Tykeson Hall and serve the STEAM disciplines of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics.
It’ll include four levels of learning space featuring labs and engineering teaching spaces, maker spaces for art, computer science, engineering and outdoor product programs, collaborative spaces for faculty and students and office space.
“It takes about a year for an academic building to go through the design process,” said Kelly Sparks, Associate VP of Finance and Strategic Planning. “We’re very engaged with our faculty, what are their needs? How are they going to teach? What do their office layouts look like? As well as our students, how do they learn? What will make them most successful as they move through their college career?”
Inside, students and staff can expect nine classrooms, three flex labs, and a Capstone teaching space.
As well as plenty of hands-on equipment to be used during and outside of class time.
It will also host one a new doctorate of physical therapy program.
“To teach physical therapy, to teach arts, media and technology, to teach outdoor products, we have to have these specialized lab spaces that allow students to have that hands-on experiential opportunity in the classroom and we just don’t have that today,” Sparks said. “It allows new programs, as well as incremental enrollment.”
The new building is part of a larger expansion project that broke ground earlier this summer.
Crews have started preparing the land at the former pumice mine and landfill adjacent to the current campus on Bend’s west side. Once it’s ready for development, work will begin on the new academic building.
It was made possible thanks to a $5 million anonymous gift, $1 million from Charles McGrath, founder and president of Grace-Bio Labs, and other donors who contributed $9 million to match state funding.
The university currently is at capacity with just over 1,250 students. As the campus expands it expects to be able to increase enrollment to 3,000 to 5,000 students.
The first phase of the project also includes plans to improve campus infrastructure, add an amphitheater and oval green, as well as city infrastructure investments including a new roundabout at SW Colorado Ave. and Columbia St, and a new pedestrian/bike path from the future campus entrance on SW Simpson Ave. to SW Century Dr.
University officials said construction could finish by summer 2021.