University of Illinois at Chicago wants to build new lab

April 14, 2008
Fire in January caused $10 million damage to College of Pharmacy facility

A fire earlier this year at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Pharmacy caused an estimated $10 million in damage. Now, college officials say getting a new building is a top priority. The fire has put a spotlight on the university's aging physical plant and deferred maintenance backlog. The building is 54 years old. Though it houses highly flammable chemicals, it has no sprinkler system. Much of the lab space is old and antiquated; chemical fume hoods are much smaller than those used in many labs. Cabinets storing noxious chemicals aren't vented. The school is so outdated that, three years ago, officials used it as an example to highlight the need for better funding for medical education. They showed reporters a dispensing lab that hadn't been updated since the 1950s and still had rotary-dial phones.

Click here to read The Chicago Sun-Times article.

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