College of Pharmacy Building 'Topped Out'
Media Contact: Ann Blackford, 859-323-6363, x230
LEXINGTON, Ky. (Aug. 26, 2008) The new University of Kentucky College of Pharmacy Building, scheduled for completion in 2010, has reached its maximum height in construction. To commemorate this milestone, a ceremony was held today to place the final steel beam at the top of the building.
"This topping out ceremony is an important moment for the future of the University of Kentucky," said UK President Lee T. Todd, Jr. "Not only is it exciting to see this portion of construction completed, I think the impressive size and scope of this new building will help people across our campus and throughout the state envision what UK's academic medical campus of the future will look like. I am looking forward to standing here in a couple of years alongside the College of Pharmacy's students, faculty, and staff to embark on a new era in scientific education and research in the Commonwealth."
The new College of Pharmacy building will be the first academic building constructed as part of UK's academic medical campus of the future, a 20-year, $2.5 billion expansion project on the south side of campus that will further accelerate research and health education in Kentucky.
"The new UK College of Pharmacy Building won't just mean more space, it will mean more opportunity for Kentucky's best and brightest young men and women who want to pursue careers as valued patient care providers in communities in every county in the Commonwealth," said Kenneth Roberts, dean of the College of Pharmacy.
The 280,000 square foot facility will be the largest academic building in Kentucky and among the largest in the nation. Standing five stories high, it will house state-of-the art academic and research facilities, two 235-seat auditoriums, a 110-seat classroom, a 54-seat classroom, a teaching laboratory, small group learning classrooms and study areas. The innovative research laboratories will be created to foster collaboration and interaction.
"The new UK College of Pharmacy building, coupled with the new UK Albert B. Chandler Hospital, is setting the momentum for the university to offer unprecedented opportunities for the citizens of the Commonwealth as we add state-of-the art research, education and patient care space on our medical campus," said Dr. Michael Karpf, UK executive vice president for health affairs.
'Topping Out' is the term used by ironworkers to indicate that the final price of steel is being hoisted into place on a building, bridge, or other large structure. The project is not completed, but has reached its maximum height. The final piece of iron is hoisted into place with a small evergreen tree atop which symbolizes growth and luck. An American flag is also attached and, in keeping with tradition, the UK College of Pharmacy's final beam has been painted white and signed by dignitaries, including faculty, staff and students.
"EOP Architects along with Ellenzweig and the entire design team are looking forward to the completion of this state-of-the-art academic and research facility," said Richard Polk, Ekhoff, Ochenkoski and Polk Architects. "We are confident that this building will do its part in helping make the UK College of Pharmacy the number one pharmacy program in the nation."
"We're proud to be helping create a state-of-the-art facility that will be serving students and faculty for years to come," said Bob Williams, vice president of operations, Messer Construction. "We join our partners in celebrating this important milestone in the construction process."