Great Things Newsletter

Chemistry Building upgrade begins

Chemistry Building Reno

Rendering of renovated lecture hall.

Chemistry Building Reno

Rendering of first floor with gathering spaces for students.

The Chemistry Building—one of the McNichols Campus’ heritage buildings—is undergoing a major renovation to restore its luster and save energy. The 84-year-old building, similar to the Commerce & Finance (C&F) Building, already has new windows. Beginning in May, the interior will be upgraded with new ceilings, newly painted walls, and porcelain tiled walls and floors in the hallways and other areas.

The Chemistry Building has three levels (lower, main and upper). Central air conditioning will be added to the renovated area. The architects are TMP Associates, which also renovated the C&F Building several years ago.

The corridor adjacent to the entryway on the east side of the building will be enlarged to create a lobby in which to congregate and hold receptions or presentations. The walls along this hall will have display monitors to project student work, videos and other visuals.

A new glass-enclosed first-floor office suite will adjoin the lobby. New light fixtures will accentuate the art deco look in gathering spaces and lighting will become brighter and more energy efficient throughout the building.

On the first floor, the men’s and women’s bathrooms will be relocated and upgraded with new fixtures, counters, walls and flooring. Several offices on the lower level, two upper-level classrooms and the Chemistry Club room will also be renovated for aesthetics and improved functionality.

The cylindrical main lecture hall (Room 114), between the first and second levels, will get a new look while retaining its retro charm. The room’s classic treetop-level windows have already been upgraded.

Chemistry Building floorplan

Chemistry Building second floor renovation floor plan.

The new room will feature 12 tiers with auditorium-style seating with retractable desktops on the upper rows, and fixed tables and chairs on the lower rows. The instructor’s area will have a smart podium, two ceiling-mounted projectors, new demonstration tables and an expansive white board. As the largest classroom/lecture hall on campus, the room will seat about 200 students.

During the spring/summer renovation, marble and accent tiles from the building will be salvaged and reused in other remodeling projects.