Stephen F. Austin State University

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SFA Chemistry Building receives more than $7 million in upgrades

September 7, 2010 - Robin Johnson
After four months of renovations and safety updates, Stephen F. Austin State University's historic Chemistry Building reopened just in time for the start of the fall semester.

The $7.35 million renovation budget addressed safety issues and infrastructure needs, including new windows, doors, lighting and restroom upgrades.

The project included a sprinkler system for the three-story building, electrical rewiring, new plumbing and lab facility upgrades needed for compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The Chemistry Building, originally the Science and Agriculture Building, was built in 1938 and is the oldest academic building on SFA's campus. Designed by Nacogdoches architect Hal Tucker, the building housed the Department of Agriculture and the farm shop on the first floor. Biology occupied the second floor, while chemistry, physics and physical science filled the top floor.

The newly refurbished building now houses all chemistry and biochemistry majors, including organic chemistry, physical chemistry, analytical chemistry, inorganic chemistry and biochemistry.

Renovations included:
- Air conditioning
- Emergency sprinklers
- Electrical wiring
- Plumbing
- Asbestos abatement
- ADA-standard labs and restrooms
- Exterior and interiors doors and windows
- Safety showers in each lab
- Two vented hoods in each lab
- One vented hood in each research lab
- A research lab for each chemistry professor
- A large lab prep classroom, which can be reconfigured for two small classrooms
- Air-locked building entrances
- Hot water in every lab
- Restrooms on each floor
- Refinished cabinets and workstations
- A large chemical storage room with digital barcodes for electronic inventory
- Energy efficient sensor lights in every classroom and lab