GC science complex

Architectural renderings show the interior and exterior of Georgia College’s new ‘Integrated Science Complex.’ A groundbreaking for the $22.1 million project is scheduled for 11 a.m. today at the corner of Montgomery and Wilkinson streets. 

Georgia College is set to celebrate two big campus construction projects today — the start of one and the completion of another.

The local liberal arts university will hold a groundbreaking at 11 a.m. for its new “Integrated Science Complex” going up on the corner of Montgomery and Wilkinson Streets and then a ribbon-cutting at 1:30 p.m. to mark the completion of the two-year renovation of Terrell Hall on Front Campus.

Together the two projects’ cost adds up to $35.4 million, with the new science building coming in at $22.1 million, according to the college. 

“I am delighted to break ground on our new Integrated Science Complex,” GC President Dr. Steve Dorman said in a Thursday GC press release. “This will greatly expand upon our existing strengths in our science programs at Georgia College and provide our students and faculty members with state-of-the-art facilities focused on science, technology and research.”

“In addition,” he said, “I am delighted to re-open historic Terrell Hall. The improvements we made to the historical character of the building are breathtaking. This facility brings together all the relevant areas of mass communications and media studies, and it greatly expands opportunities for our students.”

The university’s new Integrated Science Complex will be three floors and 43,000 square feet. Scheduled completion date is set for late spring next year, meaning it will likely be fully open for the start of the 2021-22 academic term. The land where the science building is going up is currently occupied by a parking lot for the college. 

Georgia College says the new space will allow the university to expand its offerings into the growing field of forensic chemistry as well as more science education courses for students who want to teach science. The design features large glass windows on the exterior while portions of the interior will also have walls of windows so visitors can see into the laboratories. Other features in the plans include a refrigerated room, imaging and microscopy suites and centrifuges. The uncovered third-floor balcony will also have an area for botany research. 

Terrell Hall, home to the university’s mass communications department, has been under renovation for the last two years. The $13.3 million project uncovered elements hidden due to previous renovations in the 1970s. GC says close to 30 coats of paint were stripped off the wood in the building’s stairwells and corridors only to find “stunning” original woodwork underneath. 

Originally built in 1908, Terrell is one of the main buildings on the college’s picturesque Front Campus. Inside will be Georgia College’s new collaborative student newsroom, space where students can learn multiple media formats — television, newspaper and radio.

Architectural designs for the Integrated Science Complex were done by Cooper Carry of Atlanta, and Sheridan Construction in Macon will handle the construction. Lord Aeck Sargent in Atlanta did architecture drawings for Terrell Hall, and Garbutt Construction Co. in Dublin, Ga. did the renovations.

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