Construction has started on the La Trobe Institute of Molecular Science (LIMS) project in Victoria, Australia with a special ground breaking ceremony attended by the Minister for Innovation, Industry, Science and Research, Senator Kim Carr.
The Australian Government has invested AU$ 85.8 million (US$ 90.7 million) in the project through its Education Investment Fund.
When complete the LIMS will be a world-class facility for molecular science, biotechnology and nanotechnology research and research training.
“When LIMS opens in late 2012 it will weave connections between existing and new buildings, and provide an entirely new approach and focus to critical biosciences work on human diseases including cancer, malaria and autoimmune diseases,” said Vice-Chancellor Professor Paul Johnson.
The AU $94 million (US$ 99 million) LIMS was designed by Australia-based architects Lyons Architects and is being constructed by Watpac. Meinhardt are structural, civil and facade engineers on the building, which will create a world-class facility for molecular science, biotechnology and nanotechnology research, teaching and learning.
The project will provide about 11000m2 of new teaching and research laboratories over six levels, including associated support spaces, and a ground level lecture theatre and ‘equipment barn’.
The upper three levels will comprise research laboratories and associated academic and general staff office spaces.
The building features two storey high raking columns and a single line of vision stair rising through the six levels.
“The facade,'”said Tony Douglas, for Meinhardt Facade Technology’s new general manager, “is derived from the molecular symbology of carbon-based life and the X & Y chromosomes.”
The project is anticipated to be delivered in late 2012.