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Probably the most exciting development in the Physics department since the acquisition of the new ion accelerator last year, is the plan to build a Physics and Astronomy building. In fact, the project is a lot farther along than many realize. According to Dr. Bohn, bids will be going out this April, with construction to begin in June.
The new building, which should take about 18 months to build, will be located immediately east of Ritter planetarium in the current parking lot. Total cost for the building and

new equipment is 9.9 million dollars, of which 7.9 million has already been appropriated to be used for the "base" building. In addition to physics classrooms, modern laboratory facilities and offices, there will also be a student lounge (bigger than a darkroom, and with windows!), and a reading room. For the total 9.9 M$, plans call for 5 floors, an observing deck, a lecture hall, and a heliostat. In addition, the 6-inch refracting telescope currently atop the east wing of University Hall would be moved to the new facility.