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2007.03.30> For Immediate Release
contact: Tim Fitzgerald - University Affairs
phone: 402.554.3536 - e-mail: tfitzgerald@mail.unomaha.edu

UNO to Break Ground on New CPACS Building April 2

Omaha - Groundbreaking ceremonies for the University of Nebraska at Omaha's (UNO) new College of Public Affairs and Community Service (CPACS) Building will be held Monday, April 2, beginning at 10:30 a.m. The ceremony will take place on the north side of UNO's old Engineering Building, which is being redesigned, modernized and expanded for CPACS.

The building will bring together all of the college's units for the first time since the college was started in 1973. The units include the UNO Aviation Institute; Department of Gerontology; Schools of Social Work, Public Administration, and Criminology and Criminal Justice; the Goodrich Scholarship Program; the Center for Public Affairs Research; William Brennan Institute for Labor Studies and the Division of Continuing Studies. Approximately 150 faculty and staff work in the college, and student enrollment was 2,294 last fall.

Built in 1957, the Engineering Building has housed a variety of departments, classrooms and offices since the College of Engineering moved into The University of Nebraska Peter Kiewit Institute on the UNO Pacific Street campus. During the last few months, much of the building has been gutted, and work is under way for two new additions that will add 20,000 square feet of space to the structure.

The renovation work will cost approximately $14.2 million and is funded with state allocations. The two additions, one on the north and the second on the south side of the building, will cost approximately $4.5 million and are being funded by private donations. Donors who have made lead gift commitments to the University of Nebraska Foundation to benefit this project are The Peter Kiewit Foundation, The Lozier Foundation, Mammel Family Foundation, William and Ruth Scott Family Foundation, and Weitz Family Foundation. Work is scheduled to be completed in August of 2008.

"The culture of our college focuses on collaboration, the value of community, diversity, transparency and communication, the value of research and academic excellence," said B.J. Reed, CPACS dean. "This project reflects the mission of the college - to foster a comprehensive, high-quality learning environment, conduct research and provide professional services to the community. We are grateful to the donors whose generosity has allowed us to proceed with this significant effort."

The building design includes open areas that allow for increased student access to faculty, spaces to promote collaboration between the departments and faculty, students and the community; and the incorporation of community open spaces that lead to labs and classrooms, Reed said. The interior of the building will be made up of open, interactive areas, seminar and meeting rooms, and multi-use classrooms and offices where the emphasis will be on space separated by little more than light and glass.

"We are a Ph.D.-granting college with many award-winning programs," Reed said. "We want the building to be an open, interactive environment that emphasizes our commitment to academic excellence, research and outreach."

HDR, Inc. has provided the architectural design for the CPACS Building, and W. Boyd Jones Construction Co. is the construction manager.

The University of Nebraska Foundation is an independent, nonprofit organization that has been raising private gifts to support the University of Nebraska for more than 70 years. Last year, more than $87 million was provided for students, faculty, academic programs, research and campus capital improvements. More information is available at http://www.nufoundation.org.

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