Construction Projects Add High Quality Research Space

UNL’s research growth has increased demand for research space campuswide. Several major construction and renovation projects are easing the space shortage and providing state-of-the-art research facilities.

Jorgensen Hall
In 2010, UNL’s physics and astronomy department traded cramped and outdated labs, classrooms and offices in three older buildings for new state-of-the-art space in Theodore Jorgensen Hall.

The four-story, 121,000-square-foot building features research lab and office space, two lecture halls, four teaching labs and eight classrooms. The $38 million building brings together more than 40 faculty, lecturers and emeriti, 26 postdocs, 60 graduate students and staff in one building designed for modern research and teaching.

It is named for the late Theodore Jorgensen, a Nebraska graduate whose distinguished faculty career at the university spanned nearly 40 years. Constructed with sustainable and energy-efficient features, it’s expected to earn silver LEED certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

Whittier Research Center
An historic building constructed in 1923 as the nation’s first junior high school now houses some of UNL’s major interdisciplinary research centers.

A $20 million renovation transformed the former school building into modern research space and the new UNL Children’s Center. The renovation provides centralized laboratory, meeting and office space for several major multidisciplinary research centers. Initial occupants include the Nebraska Transportation Center, the Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research and, soon, the new global Water for Food Institute. For the Nebraska Transportation Center, the move means that most transportation research on campus is now under one roof.

Virology Addition
Nebraska Center for Virology scientists will soon have additional lab space, thanks to an $8 million grant to expand the Ken Morrison Life Sciences Research Center.

The grant from the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Research Resources is funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. It will enable UNL to construct a 26,000-square-foot laboratory wing. Construction will begin in 2011 with completion in 2012. Opened in 2008, the 68,741-square-foot Morrison Center was designed to accommodate future expansion. The addition will include up to seven research laboratories, lab support facilities, and office and seminar space.

An NIH Center of Biomedical Research Excellence, the virology center links scientists at UNL, the University of Nebraska Medical Center and Creighton University who study the leading viral threats to people, animals and plants.

Keim Hall
A $14 million renovation of Keim Hall provides updated laboratories, classrooms and offices for UNL’s agronomy and horticulture department, the Nebraska Forest Service, the Center for Grassland Studies and USDA-Agricultural Research Service scientists.
Constructed in 1950, the 53,727-square-foot building needed extensive renovation. It was gutted and redesigned to meet today’s research and teaching needs and to improve energy and water efficiency. It’s expected to earn silver or gold LEED certification.

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Associated Web Content

Jorgensen Hall news story

Department of Physics and Astronomy

Whittier news story

Nebraska Transportation Center

Nebraska Center for Energy Sciences Research

Water for Food Institute

Keim Hall news release

Department of Agronomy and Horticulture

Morrison addition news release

Nebraska Center for Virology


The 2009-2010 Annual Report is published by the
University of Nebraska−Lincoln Office of Research and Economic Development. More information is available
at or contact:

Prem S. Paul
Vice Chancellor for Research and Economic Development
301 Canfield Administration Building
University of Nebraska−Lincoln
Lincoln, Nebraska 68588-0433
(402) 472-3123  •

Vicki Miller, Monica Norby, Ashley Washburn, Elizabeth Banset, Office of Research and Economic Development

Contributing Writers:
Gillian Klucas, Kim Hachiya, Cara Pesek
Some articles are based on earlier stories from University Communications and IANR News Service and written by Kelly Bartling, Troy Fedderson, Sara Gilliam, Sandi Alswager Karstens, Daniel R. Moser, Judy Nelson, Tom Simons,
Steve Smith, Carole Wilbeck

Joel Brehm, Brett Hampton, Craig Chandler,
Alan Jackson/Jackson Studios, Greg Nathan,
Bruce Thorson, Robert Cope, Laurence Smith
Historic photos, page 22, courtesy Joyce Clarke Turvey

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