CONTACT: GARY GALLUZZO
100 Old Public Library
Iowa City IA 52242
(319) 384-0009; fax (319) 384-0024
Release: Oct. 9, 2000
UI Biology Building East to be dedicated Oct. 14
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa College of Liberal Arts department
of biological sciences will hold a 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 14 dedication ceremony
at the corner of Iowa Avenue and Dubuque Street for the Biology Building East,
the Jerry J. Kollros Auditorium and the new skywalk.
Scheduled speakers include: Owen J. Newlin, president of the Board of Regents;
Mary Sue Coleman, UI president and professor of biological sciences and biochemistry;
Linda R. Maxson, dean of the College of Liberal Arts and professor of biological
sciences; Jack E. Lilien, professor and chair of the department of biological
sciences; and Gary N. Gussin, professor of biological sciences.
The ceremony will be followed by tours of the new building beginning at
11 a.m. In addition, a 1:30 p.m. free, public symposium in the Jerry J. Kollros
Auditorium (named for Emeritus Professor Kollros who taught at the UI from
1946-1988) will feature presentations aimed at general audiences by four biological
- "Genes, Nerves and Behavior: From Fruit Flies to Human," by
Professor Chun-Fang Wu;
- "How Insects STAY Young," by Professor Barbara Stay;
- "Only As High As an Elephant's Eye: What Limits Growth in Corn,"
by Associate Professor Erin E. Irish; and
- "How Cells Crawl Around in the Body: 3D Reconstructions," by
Professor David R. Soll.
Jack E. Lilien, who came to the UI in July as professor and chair of biological
sciences, says that the dedication activities are meant to highlight the exciting
opportunities that the new facilities make possible for research, teaching
"Biology is central to almost all our contemporary concerns, from human
health to environmental preservation," Lilien says. "These new facilities
will insure that our department continues to make important contributions
through cutting-edge research and education."
The public dedication ceremony marks the completion of the first part of
a two-phase, five-year construction and planning program to improve UI biological
sciences facilities. The Biology Building East is a 56,000-square-foot research
facility that opened for classes at the beginning of the fall semester. The
building houses four new classrooms, the new Jerry J. Kollros Auditorium equipped
with the latest in teaching and presentation technology, state-of-the-art
research laboratories, a greenhouse and the Raymond Fong Conference Room,
named in honor of a graduate student killed in an automobile accident. Brooks,
Borg and Skiles, a Des Moines architectural firm, designed the new building,
and McComas-Lacina of Iowa City served as the general contractor for the overall
project. The $17.7 million Biology Building East project also included remodeling
of the old Biology Annex, which houses the departmental library, and construction
of the skywalk, designed by architect Siah Armajani and built by general contractor
Taylor Ball, Inc. of Cedar Rapids.
The second phase of the biological sciences improvement program, which began
in July, involves renovation of the1902-vintage Old Biology Building to accommodate
faculty offices and 13 state-of-the-art laboratories. The project will also
involve upgrading labs, offices and classrooms in the Biology 1 and Biology
2 buildings, constructed with federal funds in 1965 and 1971, respectively.
The cost of the final phase is $16.8 million, of which $14.7 has been appropriated
by the Iowa Legislature.
The department of biological sciences is a nationally recognized research
center that currently consists of 31 tenure-track faculty, 52 graduate students,
and more than 70 full-time and part-time support staff. More than 600 students
list the biological sciences as their major, double the number of eight years
ago, and the department attracts more than 3,000 students from seven of the
UI's 11 colleges. It offers a wide array of graduate programs and conducts
research across the full spectrum of biological sciences, from cell, molecular
and developmental biology to neurobiology, physiology, and ecology and evolution.
The ceremony, tours and talks are free and open to the public.