Biosciences Advanced Teaching and Research Building at Iowa State University

Ames, Iowa

The biosciences programs at Iowa State had critical need for high-quality disciplinary and multi-disciplinary research laboratories; classrooms and teaching laboratories; core support facilities that include computational, biological, wet, and specialized instrumentation laboratories; and collaboration spaces.

The team of OPN Architects and SLAM proposed a plan to identify the needs which could be accommodated in repurposed existing space and those which could only be met by a new space. Iowa State chose to construct a new facility to support growing enrollment and provide future expansion capabilities.

The new $45 million, 121,600-square-foot teaching and research facility houses the Departments of Plant Pathology and Microbiology, Genetics Development and Cell Biology, and Entomology.

One the first four floors offices and meeting rooms circle a core of teaching and research labs. A lounge and a 122-seat general university classroom sit on the first floor, with study space on each level overlooking the lounge‚Äôs glass atrium. The roof holds nine greenhouses — six for plant pathology and microbiology, two for entomology and one for GDCB.

The fifth floor is a headquarters for the Nanovaccine Institute, an Iowa State-coordinated interdisciplinary consortium of 67 researchers at 20 universities, research institutes, national laboratories and companies.

Key features:

  • Flexible research laboratory spaces and casework allow the department to respond to changes in research teams, topics, equipment, and techniques
  • Technologically advanced teaching laboratories to promote interactive, science exploration and learning
  • Interaction areas throughout the building encourage planned and spontaneous discussions, brain-storming, and outreach sessions

Designed in collaboration with SLAM.

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