Metro State Receives $5.2 million In State Funding

MSU Denver's proposed  AES building will integrate the study of advanced manufacturing disciplines into a single building. Image Source: Metro State University Denver.

MSU Denver’s proposed AES building will integrate the study of advanced manufacturing disciplines into a single building. Image Source: Metro State University Denver.

Denver, Colorado. September 16, 2014 – Metro State University’s proposed Aerospace and Engineering Sciences building (AES) is one step closer to becoming a reality, with the release of $5.2 million from the Spillover Appropriation Fund by the state Capital Development Committee to fund planning, pre-construction and utility work of a new, innovative facility.

“Our Aerospace and Engineering Sciences initiative will directly address one of the biggest workforce challenges in Colorado: how to better create a pipeline of highly skilled graduates to meet the specific needs of Colorado industries,” said President Stephen Jordan. “Colorado has the country’s third-largest aerospace economy, but industry leaders can’t find the talent they need to maintain that position of strength. We’re working closely with industry leaders to design a ground-breaking program to develop the nation’s most workforce-ready advanced manufacturing professionals.”

The AES program and interdisciplinary curriculum will foster valuable connections between aviation and aerospace science; mechanical, electrical and civil engineering technologies; industrial design; physics; computer information systems and computer science — and attract career-focused students to MSU Denver. Discussions with aerospace, aviation and advanced manufacturing industry leaders throughout the metro Denver area are helping to inform the development of degree tracks and courses.

Through a competitive bidding process, MSU Denver selected AndersonMasonDale as the architectural and engineering design firm for the project. With confirmation of state funding, the University will finalize its contract with the firm, and work will begin on October 1. The design and engineering phase will include surveying, building design, code and jurisdiction review, project management and pre-construction.

The University is working to select a construction firm and has narrowed its search to six finalists. The general contractor is expected to work with AndersonMasonDale to make the construction process as efficient as possible, both in terms of time and money.

Planning and design for the 142,000-square-foot, $60 million AES building is expected to take 12 months, with construction estimated at between 16 and 20 months. MSU Denver has committed $20 million of its own capital improvement funds to the project, and will seek an additional $15 million from the state and $20 million from the private sector. The goal is to break ground in fall 2015 and open the facility in spring 2017. The building is to be located at the southwest corner of 7th Street and Auraria Parkway.