Construction: The Race to the Top

The topping-off ceremony of the College of Science and Mathematics building.

Progress is made daily on two eagerly anticipated new academic buildings — the Center for Environmental and Life Sciences (CELS) and the new School of Business building.

Montclair State University broke ground on the two buildings in September, in a ceremony that attracted hundreds, including state legislators, construction officials, local dignitaries and members of the University community, and by January, work had progressed enough on both buildings for “topping-off” events — where the final steel beams in each of the buildings’ structures were lifted into place.

These two major construction projects — which represent a combined investment of $121 million in new academic facilities — are being partially funded by the state of New Jersey, and will boost both the state and local economies by creating 1,500 construction and support jobs. In April 2013, the University was awarded nearly $94 million in state bond funding from the “Building Our Future” Bond Act approved by New Jersey voters in November 2012.

The $55-million, 107,500-square-foot Center for Environmental and Life Sciences will expand the University’s science research infrastructure by 50 percent with state-of-the-art laboratory and collaborative research space. The 143,000-square-foot School of Business building will provide students with a $66-million, high-tech learning environment featuring a 150-seat lecture hall, classrooms and computer labs as well as market research/analysis labs and a financial trading floor.