Move-in is underway at new biosciences building


Steve Whitham, left, professor of plant pathology and microbiology, and Jaime Dittman, research assistant, get equipment into place while moving into their fourth floor lab space in the new Advanced Teaching and Research Building on Tuesday morning. Photos by Christopher Gannon.

Plant pathology and microbiology faculty have started moving their offices and labs into their new home in the Advanced Teaching and Research Building (ATRB), which also will house portions of the entomology and genetics, development and cell biology (GDCB) departments.

Unlike most of his colleagues, plant pathology and microbiology professor Steve Whitham is orchestrating two moves. His own lab will shift to the new $57.5 million facility later this month, but he also oversees the department's shared lab space, which moved Tuesday.

"Quality-wise, it's definitely an upgrade," he said.

Care is taken to minimize the disruption for in-progress experiments, but other logistical concerns are more common, he said. Moving a lab, just like moving a residence, is an opportunity to sort and downsize.

"We're going to lose our pack-rat mentality a little bit," Whitham said.


Movers unload equipment outside the Advanced Teaching and Research Building on Tuesday morning.

Years of planning preceded the recent arrival of moving trucks. The state Board of Regents approved the new building in 2015 as part of $88 million in bioscience facility improvements, which also included a $30.5 million addition to Bessey Hall that opened last fall. Funding for the combined projects included $50 million in state appropriations, $10 million in private gifts, and $28 million in university funds and facilities bonds.

ATRB is at the northwest corner of Stange Road and Pammel Drive, just east of Insectary on the former site of Industrial Education II. Occupants are filling the finished lower four floors of the building, where offices and meeting rooms circle a core of teaching and research labs. A lounge and a 122-seat general university classroom sit on the first floor, with study space on each level overlooking the lounge's glass atrium. The roof holds nine greenhouses -- six for plant pathology and microbiology, two for entomology and one for GDCB.

About 18,500 square feet on the fifth floor remains unfinished, but not for long. In December, regents approved a $6.5 million plan to create a headquarters on the fifth floor for the Nanovaccine Institute, an Iowa State-coordinated interdisciplinary consortium of 67 researchers at 20 universities, research institutes, national laboratories and companies. It is expected to open in fall 2019.

Spalding appointed to economic development interim post

David Spalding headshot

David Spalding

President Wendy Wintersteen has appointed David Spalding interim vice president for economic development and business engagement, effective July 1 and subject to state Board of Regents approval. Spalding will retain his role as Raisbeck Endowed Dean of the Ivy College of Business.

Spalding succeeds Mike Crum, who requested a return to the Ivy College of Business, where he holds the Ruan Chair in Supply Chain Management.

"I am pleased that David has agreed to take on this interim role to ensure Iowa State’s economic development services, resources and partnerships remain strong as we navigate this transition," Wintersteen said.

Crum has served in the economic development leadership role for five years. Among his accomplishments, he led the planning that established the office of economic development and industry relations and oversaw construction of the division's home in the Economic Development Core Facility at the ISU Research Park.

"Mike has been exceptional at working with internal and external groups to strengthen Iowa State's value as a driver of economic growth and development," Wintersteen said. "We are grateful for his leadership in expanding Iowa State's economic impact."

Mike Crum

Mike Crum

Crum will continue in his role as chair of the research park's board of directors, and he will continue to serve on the ISU Research Foundation Board until a permanent vice president for economic development and business engagement is named.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed working with a truly incredible team in economic development," Crum said. "Iowa State provides tremendous value to the state's economy in so many ways, and this will only expand under President Wintersteen's leadership. I am extremely excited for the future as we continue to demonstrate what a great investment Iowa State is."

Crum said the request for a change reflects his desire to return to teaching and research and a need for more time to tend to family members with health challenges.

He previously served as interim Business dean, associate dean for research and graduate programs, and chair of what now is the department of supply chain and information systems.


Projects list gets longer in the summer

Wilson Hall windows

Crew members work on installing windows Tuesday in the top floor of Wilson residence hall. The Towers are two of numerous residence halls getting new windows this summer when the demand for housing is down. Photo by Christopher Gannon.

For a lucky minority on a university campus, summer brings a more relaxed schedule. For others -- including facilities planning and management's capital projects team -- it's Go Time. There are dozens of projects scheduled, but Inside offers a look at a few with the potential to impact the most people on campus.


The Welch Avenue/Union Road reconstruction has been delayed approximately 30 days due to unanticipated engineering issues with a box culvert beneath the bridge, uncovered during road demolition in March. The completion target for phase 1, originally May 4, has been moved to the first week in June.

Construction manager Leroy Brown said the two-summer timeline for the road replacement project builds in the flexibility to move some of the work to summer 2019, as necessary.

Another two-summer project to add chilled water pipes beneath Bissell Road is on schedule. On Wednesday, a second section of Bissell closed, from the west side of Sweeney Hall to just south of the Osborn Drive intersection. Bissell Road's lot 14 (reserved and handicapped parking) has moved permanently up the street to west of the Armory.

Both projects will wrap up for this summer by Aug. 10.

Hilton Coliseum

Work continues to expand the parking capacity on the north, south and east sides of Hilton and adjust sidewalk locations to improve pedestrian safety. A new north driveway to Lincoln Way has been completed. Hilton will be accessible for events throughout the summer. The work will wrap up by the end of August.

New ceiling lights outside the perimeter of the Hilton court were installed last year. This summer, the old lights above the court will be removed, and those lighting holes in the plank ceiling filled. The wood planks will be painted black. Work begins after the final high school commencement of the season (May 30) and will last about four weeks.

Dining facilities

The Hub and the Memorial Union food court are closed for remodels. The food court, with a new central salad/food bar, will be ready for the start of fall semester; the Hub is scheduled to reopen in early November with a more crowd-friendly floor plan.

Library restrooms

The men's and women's restrooms -- 14 in all -- on the basement through third floors (1960s addition) of Parks Library will be renovated, and restrooms will be added to the fourth floor in this part of the building. Demolition began last week. The renovations will occur over two summers, with the south stack of restrooms completed this summer and the north set next summer. As designed, each south set of restrooms will become a larger women's restroom and a separate family restroom. Each north set will become a larger men's restroom and a separate custodial closet. A lactation room formerly on the lower level will be relocated to the first floor. The first phase should wrap up for the summer in early August.

Zaffarano Physics Addition

The 50-year-old building's exterior will receive numerous repairs as needed, including minor tuck-pointing, replacement of sealants, painting of soffits and repairs to the precast concrete panels at the top of the building. Work will begin in early June and continue through the end of October. Sidewalks around Zaffarano should remain open.

Residence hall upgrades

West side

  • A three-summer project to replace all the windows in Friley Hall is underway. The west end of Friley that parallels Lincoln Way (1927 and 1953 sections) will be completed this year.

South side

  • Phase 2 of a two-summer window replacement project in Wallace and Wilson residence halls has begun on the top floors. Completion is scheduled by late July. Phase 1 (last summer) replaced windows in the dens and common areas; this summer covers all other windows in the towers.

East side

East-west pedestrian traffic through this part of campus this summer will need to travel along Lincoln Way or south of the Forker Building due to multiple building projects in Richardson Court. The area is blocked off as a construction zone.

  • Work began last month to replace the windows in Linden Hall, which also is getting new flooring, lighting and interior paint this summer. The building should be ready to go by the end of July.
  • Roof replacement on Lyon, Barton and Freeman halls has started and is scheduled for completion in late July. The existing slate roof system will be replaced with asphalt shingle roofs, new gutters and downspouts. In addition, the Lyon Hall exterior will receive tuck-pointing.
  • A second summer of bathroom remodels in Richardson Court will continue in Lyon, Birch, Welch and Roberts halls. Restrooms in Barton and Freeman halls were completed last summer. Existing restrooms will be gutted and replaced with a layout that offers private showers and toilets. This work also is scheduled to wrap up by the end of July.


  • The asphalt bicycle/pedestrian path adjacent to University Boulevard between Haber Road and Lincoln Way has been removed and is in the process of being replaced.
  • Work is underway to widen a fourth section of sidewalk on the north side of Osborn Drive, between Physics and Gilman halls, to better accommodate students during class passing times.
  • The pedestrian culvert/tunnel that runs under the Union Pacific railroad on the north side of campus (near Printing and Publications) will be repaved this summer, with a timeline to be announced.

Recreation fields

Work continues east of the Maple, Willow and Larch residence halls to upgrade the recreation fields. Current tasks are to run electrical lines to the light poles and scoreboards, construct a bioswale around the perimeter to assist with drainage, install an irrigation system and grade the area for grass. The goal is for students to use the fields this fall for intramural activities.

More information: FPM links

Summer utility projects
Summer classroom improvements
Summer building projects


A look at who's coming to campus this summer

With fewer students around, Iowa State hosts a wide variety of visitors throughout the summer. Here's a list of summer events on campus expecting to draw at least 100 people.

Email to suggest any additions we've missed.





Special Olympics Summer Games

May 17-19



Transfer student orientation

May 21, June 29



Odyssey of the Mind World Finals

May 23-26



Freshman orientation

May 29-June 27



Iowa Simmental Jr. Field Day

June 1-3

Hansen Ag Center


School Foods Short Course: Procurement Basics

June 5



North American College and Teachers of Agriculture Association Conference

June 12-15



USA Track and Field Iowa State Meet

June 16-17

Cyclone Sports Complex


OPPTAG youth programs

June 11-July 20



ISU Livestock Judging Camp

June 11-13

Hansen Ag Center


Iowa Sheep and Wool Festival

June 16-17

Hansen Ag Center


American Aberdeen National Jr. Show

June 19-23

Hansen Ag Center


Iowa Reading Association Conference

June 25-27



4-H Youth State Conference

June 26-28



4-H Animal Science Roundup

June 26-28

Hansen Ag Center


Iowa Swine Day June 28 Scheman 450

Spirit of the Plains Ultimate Tournament

June 30-July 1

SE Recreation Complex


USA Track and Field Region 8 Meet

July 5-9

Cyclone Sports Complex


Conference on Aperiodic Crystals

July 8-13



Summer Iowa Games

July 14-15, 20-22, 27-29




July 24-25

Iowa State Center


TransGrid-X 2035 Symposium

July 26



Midwest Single Molecule Workshop

July 30-31

Molecular Biology