The Center for the Sciences: Chemistry and Biochemistry will house classes at Valparaiso University beginning fall 2017, bringing 55,000 square feet of chemistry, biochemistry and biology laboratory space to the University’s 350-acre campus. In addition to innovative research facilities, the building construction prioritized energy efficiency and will be honored by NIPSCO during a presentation Aug. 8, at 4 p.m.

Through NIPSCO’s Business Energy Efficiency Programs, businesses are eligible to receive monetary incentives for making energy-efficient upgrades to their facilities. Valpo participated in the new construction portion of the program for the Center for the Sciences: Chemistry and Biochemistry and will receive a nearly $150,000 energy rebate. In total, the construction project saved 954,533 kilowatt hours and 80,681 therm. Just one therm is the equivalent energy output of burning roughly 100 cubic feet of natural gas. The project included LED lighting and an energy-efficient HVAC system.

At the core of the new facility is an interdisciplinary lab, where students will collaborate with each other and with faculty as they hone research skills. Part of a larger STEM Village, the Center for the Sciences reinforces Valpo’s commitment to STEM education and engenders great opportunities for innovative teaching and advanced student-faculty research.

Valparaiso University has invested nearly $255 million in new construction and renovation projects during the past 15 years, employing contractors and construction workers in the Northwest Indiana region during tough economic times. The Center for the Sciences: Chemistry and Biochemistry is a $30 million project and is highlighted by a stunning glass installation commissioned by local artists at Hot Shop Valpo.

The NIPSCO energy rebate presentation will take place at the Center for the Sciences: Chemistry and Biochemistry, 1710 Chapel Drive, on Valparaiso University’s campus.