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$300 Million Project Completed at PNNL

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, three federal agencies and the Tri-Cities community celebrated the completion of the largest...

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Replacement buildings will house 750 staff; enable chemistry, materials, biology advancements

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, three federal agencies and the Tri-Cities community celebrated the completion of the largest construction project in PNNL's 46-year history at a ceremony today on the PNNL campus.

The Capability Replacement Laboratory project broke ground in 2008 and includes seven new buildings on PNNL's main campus in north Richland. It also includes extension of the operating life of four buildings utilized by PNNL on the nearby Hanford Site.

The replacement facilities will allow PNNL to maintain and grow vital science, energy and national security programs funded by the Department of Energy, National Nuclear Security Administration, Department of Homeland Security, National Institutes of Health and others.

The new and renovated facilities replace laboratory and office space PNNL has been using in Hanford's 300 Area for several decades. That space must be vacated to make way for environmental cleanup activities at Hanford.

In total, the combined new and renovated replacement facilities cost more than $300 million and house 750 PNNL staff.

"These state-of-the-art facilities will allow PNNL to make important scientific discoveries in chemistry, materials and biology. They also will significantly enhance PNNL's strong science base and enable advances in areas of critical importance to our country — energy, the environment and national security," said William Brinkman, director of the Department of Energy's Office of Science in Washington, D.C.

"In particular, these facilities will enable experimental and computational research that will lead to novel energy solutions, reduce America's dependence on imported oil and help prevent the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. In short, they will make our nation safer and cleaner."

"The Capability Replacement Laboratory project is essential to advancing our laboratory's science and technology agenda, and it is critical to retaining and expanding upon the advanced capabilities and expertise that we've worked so hard to develop here in Richland since 1965," added PNNL Director Mike Kluse. "These replacement facilities are an important public investment in advancing scientific discovery to meet some of the biggest issues facing our nation today."

Speakers at today's event included Brinkman, Kluse and Anne Harrington, deputy administrator for Defense Nuclear Nonproliferation at the National Nuclear Security Administration; James Johnson, director of the Department of Homeland Security's Office of National Laboratories; and Julie Erickson, acting manager of DOE's Pacific Northwest Site Office.

Of the total funding, $224 came from the federal government including $99 million from DOE's Office of Science, $69 million from NNSA and $56 from DHS. A unique public-private partnership brought an additional $77 million of private funds to the project.