**For Immediate Release**
Plans Underway for New Building
-released by OPSU Campus Communications 10-07-05
by Laura Dahl
The 2005 Oklahoma Legislative Session ushered in a new
era for public Oklahoma colleges and universities. The
passage of a capital bond issue to fund urgently needed
improvements statewide in our educational centers will
positively impact students as well as giving Oklahoma’s
economy a boost.
Oklahoma Panhandle State University will build a $6.53
million Science and Agriculture center that will contain
classrooms, labs, offices and storage areas. OPSU, in conjunction
with Oklahoma State University’s Arlene Lanman, Director
of Architectural Services, held a Project Seminar on Friday,
October 7 at 11:00 a.m. in the Noble Center.
Prior to Friday’s Project Seminar, the Board of
Regents for the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges
required solicitation of all qualified architectural firms
certified with the Department of Central Services. Firms
interested in the project were represented at the meeting,
and Lanman explained the architect selection process.
Those firms that choose to pursue the project must submit
a letter of interest and professional documentation to
her by 5:00 p.m. on October 24. A committee will rank the
companies based on their experience and expertise in this
type of construction, and five will be invited to review
their past experience, quality of engineering and design.
From those five, three firms will be chosen and their proposals
will be submitted to the Board of Regents, who will select
the architect. Once an architect is chosen by the Board,
an offer is negotiated and a contract is signed. Even though
it seems a lengthy time line, an architect should be chosen
shortly after the first of the year. The new building will
be ready for occupancy by August of 2008.
Following Lanman’s presentation, OPSU’s Vice
President of Fiscal Affairs, Larry Peters, distributed
additional information including a campus map with the
building site marked and specifications regarding classroom,
office, lab and storage area sizes.
Housing the School of Agriculture and the School of Science,
Mathematics, and Nursing in one building provides an excellent
opportunity to consolidate and share resources between
these areas of science, increasing efficiency due to shared
lab facilities and classrooms.
While OPSU students receive a quality education, the need
for an up-to-date classroom and laboratory building would
ease overcrowding and provide equipment that would more
adequately accommodate education.
In addition to providing educational opportunities for
students, plans for the new building include a water quality
testing laboratory that will benefit local municipalities
and the agricultural sector as well as an animal nutrition
With 140 projects planned in 36 communities, construction
will provide a huge economic boost for Oklahoma. This investment
in higher education also means an investment in the future
of our state’s most valuable resource - people.