Staff Reporters

More than two years ago, Yale announced it was planning to invest $500 million in Yale School of Medicine facilities over the next decade.

With the completion of the $176.6 million Congress Avenue facility scheduled for November, the investment will soon start to pay tangible dividends.

The facility, which will have six new floors with both teaching and cutting-edge laboratory facilities, will increase the medical school’s laboratory space by 25 percent, School of Medicine Chief Operating Officer Irwin Birnbaum said.

“This is a significant start at looking into future of medicine from all angles: genetics, immunobiology, pulmonology,” Birnbaum said.

Virginia Chapman, the project management director at the School of Medicine, said that finishing the building has kept the school’s facilities office occupied.

“[The] Congress Avenue building is moving along on schedule and on budget,” Chapman said. “It’s due for completion in November 2002, but [we] won’t occupy it until March 2003.”

In addition to the work at the Congress Avenue facility, a number of other renovations are ongoing.

“The Congress Avenue building is out of the ordinary,” Chapman said. “Our normal diet of work involves some new additions and renovations to existing laboratories. Every year we will probably do $30 or 40 million over the next 10 years.”

There also are renovations progressing on the B and C wings of the School of Medicine.

Chapman said the school is building a three-floor extension building to attach to the B wing, and added that the addition will include state-of-the-art pharmacology facilities with laboratory and office spaces. The building will cost $14.5 million.

The school already renovated the first floor of the B wing.

The C wing renovation involves a complete gutting of existing facilities on the second floor and the creation of state-of-the-art facilities for cell biology research. The renovation will cost $7.75 million and is scheduled for completion late in the summer, Chapman said.

Yale made the $500 million investment in February 2000, with Yale President Richard Levin saying that he hoped the plan would keep the University at the forefront of biomedical engineering.

The announcement of the investment in the School of Medicine came just a month after the announcement of a $500 million dollar expansion plan in science and engineering.