An artists concept for the High Bay Research Facility at the University of Wyoming. The concept is not the actual design.

(Laramie, Wyo.) – The University of Wyoming Board of Trustees today (Monday) selected two Wyoming companies to manage two major construction projects at UW.

The board voted to authorize negotiation of a contract with Haselden Constructors of Laramie to serve as construction manager at risk (CMAR) for the High Bay Research Facility, an approximately $30 million project that is part of UW’s engineering initiative. And trustees voted to contract with GE Johnson Construction of Jackson to serve as CMAR for an expected $21 million remodeling and expansion of the Corbett Pool facility.

The High Bay Research Facility, funded with $15 million in state appropriations and $15 million in private gifts, will be built along north 19th Street near the UW Centennial Complex. It will contain approximately 60,000 square feet with large-scale, flexibly configured research laboratories, offices and meeting areas. The facility will house labs for large-scale experiments that go beyond the size of a traditional engineering laboratory. These labs include a geomechanics lab, a core-flood facility, a structural engineering lab, and possibly a wind tunnel, along with supporting facilities and personnel.

Construction is expected to begin in in the winter/spring of 2015, with completion by summer 2016.

UW's Corbett Pool is scheduled for renovation. (UW)

UW’s Corbett Pool is scheduled for renovation. (UW)

Meanwhile, plans call for adding 36,000 square feet to and renovating 23,000 square feet of the 40-year-old Corbett Pool building to create a modern swimming and diving facility for UW’s intercollegiate swimming and diving teams. The existing pool is too short for swimming meets and practice, and too shallow for diving beyond the 3-meter springboard. In addition, the pool deck is too small, its locker rooms are outdated, and the spectator area is separated by a glass partition. The planned facility features a new eight-lane, 50-meter pool with moveable bulkheads, a diving tower and diving well, with upper-level spectator seating. Expanded and upgraded locker rooms and a team room are included, along with a sports medicine and video/film room.

No construction timeline has been established for the Corbett Pool project. The university plans to seek construction funding from the state during the next legislative session.

Also today, the Board of Trustees voted to retain the firm of By Architectural Means P.C. of Cheyenne, in association with Sink Combs Dethlefs of Denver, to provide architect/engineering services for the second phase of UW Arena-Auditorium improvements. By Architectural Means has provided those services for the first phase of the A-A project, which is underway this summer and includes reconstruction of the basketball court, lower seating bowl and locker room areas.

A concept of the second phase development of the AA in Laramie (UW)

A concept of the second phase development of the AA in Laramie (UW)

The second phase of the A-A project will include an addition to the east side of the building, providing a new major façade with two new entry lobbies, along with a new club room and Hall of Fame area. The concourse will be renovated with improved concession and merchandise areas, restrooms and a new central ticket office. The preliminary estimate for the phase 2 project is $17 million, with $5 million coming from state appropriations, $6 million in private donations and $6 million in state matching funds. The total cost of both phases of A-A improvements is about $30 million.

On another matter, the board voted to contract with TDSi of Cheyenne, in association with Historic Strategies of Birchrunville, Pa., to update UW’s historic preservation plan. The consultant will review the university’s 1999 historic preservation plan and suggest revisions by: researching and completing State Historic Preservation Office surveys for all UW buildings not included in previous surveys; conducting a visual survey of historic campus buildings to identify significant architectural features and themes; and developing design guidelines for new and renovated buildings. Estimated cost of the update is $125,000.

Finally, trustees approved an easement for the city of Laramie to establish a trail along the perimeter of UW property next to the Jacoby Golf Course. The trail would expand the city’s network of pathways on the east side of Laramie, providing a public trail for walking, running and bicycling. The easement area is 25 feet wide and about two miles long; plans call for the trail to have a crushed gravel surface of about 6 to 8 feet wide.

The easement agreement grants access to the city to build, maintain and repair the trail for an initial term of 15 years, with the option of extending it for 10 more years upon agreement of both parties.