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Natural History Building to take $3 million more for structural renovation

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Natural History Building to take $3 million more for structural renovation

The Natural History Building is under renovation and is currently scheduled to be completely upgraded by fall 2016.

The Natural History Building is under renovation and is currently scheduled to be completely upgraded by fall 2016.

Tyler Courtney

The Natural History Building is under renovation and is currently scheduled to be completely upgraded by fall 2016.

Tyler Courtney

Tyler Courtney

The Natural History Building is under renovation and is currently scheduled to be completely upgraded by fall 2016.

By Daily Illini Staff Report

The Natural History building on campus is requesting an additional $3 million for renovations that started this summer. Initially approved for $70 million in December of 2011 from institutional funds and construction contingency funding, the building was endowed with a total of $73.4 million by the time construction began during the summer of 2014.

The building is projected for completion by the fall of 2016, but the timeline is being reviewed due to unforeseen structural issues. Steven Breitwieser, manager of Communications and External Relations, said the issues are related to the older structure of the building, which has been on campus since 1892.

“We’re dealing with structures that are over one hundred years old and finding more issues than anticipated,” said Breitwieser.

Nathan Ricker, Illinois alumnus and the first architectural graduate of the University, designed the original building, according to the website for the Natural History Building. Those involved in the renovations are working to renovate the building but maintain as much of the classic structure as possible. Breitwieser said they are looking to follow the lead of Lincoln Hall’s renovation in terms of “keeping the historical factor, but definitely adding the wow factor.”

“It’s very neat that there will be upgraded facilities, technology and services but still have the connection the people that have studied and worked there before,” said Breitwieser.

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Click through our timeline to learn more about the Natural History Building’s past.

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