Gov. Doyle: Announces $240 million for UW-Milwaukee building projects

Contacts: Carla Vigue, Office of the Governor, 608-261-2162

MADISON – Governor Jim Doyle today announced that his capital budget will provide $240 million in total bonding over the next six years for the Milwaukee Initiative, an effort to move forward on building projects at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee in the areas of engineering and science, freshwater science and health. The Governor’s capital budget invests in University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee (UWM) in order to improve the state’s ability to create jobs and grow the economy.

“Our universities have always been the engines that drive Wisconsin,” Governor Doyle said. “This initiative will support UWM’s efforts to grow the economy in southeast Wisconsin. Even in tough times we must continue to invest in education and research so that we can get through this in a way that will make us stronger in the years ahead.”

The Milwaukee Initiative is designed to provide flexibility to UWM as it moves forward on several existing projects that have support of business, civic and governmental leaders in southeast Wisconsin.  UWM will determine which projects move forward and the timeline.

Specific projects that UWM has under development include:

·         Great Lakes Research Facility and “Neeskay” Research Vessel – UWM is looking to significantly renovate the existing facility and build an addition to it to provide improved and expanded space for scientists and research associated with the new School of Freshwater Science. UWM would also like to purchase a new research vessel to replace the “Neeskay”, which is currently the only academic research vessel on the Great Lakes.

·         School of Freshwater Science – UWM is looking to build a new School of Freshwater Science along Lake Michigan near Discovery World and the Milwaukee Art Museum. The facility would have classroom space for students in the school.  Space in this facility could also host the M7 Water Council and provide meeting and exhibition space to showcase services and products related to water technologies.

·         College of Engineering – UWM is looking to build a new college of engineering facility which would provide research space for faculty and senior scientists focusing on biomedical engineering and advanced manufacturing and classroom and research space for graduate students.

·         School of Public Health – UWM is looking to locate a facility for the School of Public Health in downtown Milwaukee.  The school would feature PhD programs in environmental health, epidemiology, health administration and policy, and social and behavioral science, as well as a master’s degree in public health.

·         Integrated Research Building – UWM would construct on its main campus a research and classroom facility. The space would include dry and wet instructional labs, research labs and classroom space.

The Governor’s capital budget proposal will be considered by the state Building Commission. The Building Commission’s sub-committees will begin consideration of the capital budget on Thursday, March 19 and the full commission will consider the entire capital budget on Monday, March 30. The commission’s recommendations, according to standard procedure, will then be forwarded to the Joint Committee on Finance as an amendment to the 2009-11 budget.