Pacific Northwest National Laboratory has awarded Fowler General Construction Inc. of Richland and TVA Architects Inc. of Portland a $9.8 million contract to design, build and furnish its new 24,000-sq.-ft. Collaboration Center in north Richland.
The new facility will be at the intersection of Horn Rapids Road and Innovation Boulevard on the north end of the PNNL campus, adjacent to PNNL’s Physical Sciences Facility.
Construction will start later this year and is expected to be finished in fall 2017.
“The center will allow PNNL to host larger and more frequent scientific meetings, workshops, training and science-focused events,” said Steven Ashby, PNNL director. “We expect this facility to result in an increased number of visitors to PNNL and to the Tri-Cities.”
Ashby said the center will enhance collaboration within the national laboratory, as well as between scientists and engineers at the PNNL, research universities and other scientific research organizations.
“At PNNL, we address some of the nation’s most challenging problems in energy, the environment and national security,” Ashby said. “But we can’t do this alone. Partnership and collaboration with other top research institutions is essential to increase the rate and impact of scientific discovery.”
The Collaboration Center also will act as a gather place that will encourage casual collaboration and connection among PNNL staff, bringing them together in a state-of-the-art facility.
The new center will offer both formal and informal meeting spaces, including breakout areas and casual, small seating areas, along with accommodations for large-scale events for up to 450 people in a single session. The center will also serve as the first stop for laboratory visitors and badging.
Food services will include an onsite café for staff and visitors, as well as accommodations for catering services to support larger events.
The Collaboration Center is part of a ten-year campus renewal strategy to acquire, modernize and sustain facilities and infrastructure to ensure PNNL is equipped to meet the Department of Energy’s and the nation’s multi-program research priorities.
“The Collaboration Center will complement our new and existing facilities by adding needed modern, collaborative space in close proximity to diverse research while also addressing other site needs,” said Roger Snyder, manager of the DOE’s Pacific Northwest Site Office.
As part of the strategy, PNNL opened its new Systems Engineering Building in August, a 24,000-sq.-ft. facility that has control rooms, testing platforms and laboratories used to address grid modernization, buildings efficiency, renewable energy integration and other energy challenges.
A 16,000-sq.-ft. general purpose chemistry laboratory is nearly complete and will open this spring and be used to support a variety of DOE-funded programs and research.
And in December, PNNL awarded a $9.5 million construction contract to DGR*Grant Construction to build a 26,000-sq.-ft. office building, which is under construction and also expected to be complete in 2017. The facility will house more than 100 PNNL staff engaged in energy and national security research.
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory is the largest employer in the Tri-Cities, employing about 4,400 people in 2015.
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