The School of Engineering’s wait for its new addition is coming to a close. Funded by a $24 million gift from engineering graduate John Malone ’63, the new facility at Prospect and Trumbull streets, which will focus on biomedical engineering, is expected to open on schedule in late 2005.

The construction team is working hard to achieve its completion goal of Aug. 2005, project manager David J. Spalding said. The structural shell of the building is currently complete, with the facade and the interior still to be finished. The facade will be composed of limestone and glass, allowing for panoramic views to East Rock Park from inside the building.

The structure, which is the first engineering building project at Yale in over 30 years, will primarily house biomedical engineering research facilities. While the move-in is scheduled for Nov. 2005, there are hopes that once the facilities are ready for use, the building will be available for earlier move-in and may be used for the entire 2005 fall semester.

“The confidence of the team is high, based on construction completed to date, and we may be able to accelerate the move-in,” Spalding said.

Members of the Yale administration said they are excited about this new addition to the most recently conceptualized department of the School of Engineering.

“The new building will be the main focal point for biomedical engineering on the Faculty of Arts and Sciences side of campus,” Provost Andrew Hamilton said. “There will be other engineering projects there, but they haven’t been determined yet.”

Biomedical engineering became its own department in 1998 and is the newest member of the School of Engineering. Prior to the department’s establishment, biomedical research was carried out at the central campus and the Yale School of Medicine.

The new building will house state-of-the-art “specialty research space,” such as a basement that is designed for minimum vibration, according to the Faculty of Engineering’s Web site. The initial design plans by the former project manager, Arch Currie, include the converting the Farmington canal — between Hillhouse Avenue and Prospect Street — into a pedestrian and bicycle trail similar to those already completed in New Haven and surrounding cities Hamden and Cheshire.

“The building will be a wonderful new space, world-class facilities and an opportunity to really consolidate [biomedical engineering] activities into an interconnected space which will improve collaboration,” Hamilton said.

Students involved with the engineering programs said they are also excited about the new opportunities the Engineering faculty is bringing to its students.

“I’m excited about the new building because engineering at Yale is usually seen as pretty small, and the new building will expand options at Yale for engineering students,” biomedical engineering major Katherine Johnson ’07 said. “The program is growing, and it is exciting to be a part of it.”

[ydn-legacy-photo-inline id=”17122″ ]