North Dakota State College of Science kicked off a $10.5 million diesel building expansion project that, when completed, will position the College as one of the largest diesel technician educational facilities in North America. North Dakota Governor Jack Dalrymple and several state legislators joined NDSCS President John Richman and numerous business partners of the College for the groundbreaking event at Bisek Hall on the Wahpeton campus where large diesel-powered equipment moved the ceremonial dirt, in addition to traditional shovels.
The $10.5 million project is being funded by the State of North Dakota, $10.3 million, and local business and industry donations of $200,000. The project is expected to be completed by June 30, 2013.
"Today marks the dawn of a new era at NDSCS," said Richman. "The College is grateful to Governor Dalrymple and legislators who recognized the need to educate a greater number of diesel technicians in the state, and who subsequently supported the funding of the expansion of Bisek Hall."
The current facility, at about 51,000 sq. feet, has limited the College's ability to meet the state's workforce need for diesel technicians and has required the College to cap student enrollment in the existing programs. With the new addition, the total space allocated for the diesel technician program will more than double to nearly 120,000 sq. feet, allowing the College to increase diesel technician enrollment by 20 percent.
The scope of the Bisek Hall expansion includes the following highlights: DIESEL TECHNOLOGY ADDITION:
65,600 sq. foot energy-efficient addition featuring exterior siding made of precast concrete;
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY: The information technology infrastructure for the building will allow data to be delivered at 1 gigabyte per second, with an expansion to 10 gigabytes per second in the future. Internet access will be available wirelessly in all public areas of the building, and also via 130 data jacks installed in classrooms and offices.
HIGH TECH EQUIPMENT: Auto Guidance Systems (GPS) and Remote Monitoring with the capability to monitor vital equipment systems online from remote locations, such as oil pressure and temperature. Also able to track equipment anywhere geographically.
Computer Controlled transmission, engines, and hydraulics-up to 20 on board computers interfacing in equipment to control machine functions
Technicians can remotely troubleshoot equipment with Blue Tooth Technology
INSTRUCTIONAL TECHNOLOGY: Classrooms equipped with high-tech, interactive digital technology to engage student learning.
ENERGY EFFICIENT TECHNOLOGY The three large shops will incorporate daylight-harvesting technology through glass garage doors measuring 24 feet by 20 feet. This technology senses the lighting level being provided to the space and when there are high amounts of natural light, this system will automatically shut off banks of lights to save energy, while not sacrificing the lighting level in the space. State-of-the-art crane systems for the suspended overhead movement of diesel equipment; A wash bay for large equipment; Five technology-equipped classrooms; Large reception area; A conference room that will accommodate up to 16 guests; Student lounge and locker rooms; Welding and machining room; New parking lots and sidewalks.
Terry Marohl, NDSCS diesel technician program chairman, says students will greatly benefit from the new facility: "Today's high-tech equipment requires high-tech facilities to train in."
T.L. Stroh Architects of Fargo, N.D., has been awarded the architectural contract; the general contractor is Comstock Construction, Wahpeton, N.D.; the civil contractor is Gast Construction, Wahpeton, N.D. and Fargo, N.D.; the electrical contractor is Scott's Electric, Wahpeton, N.D.; and the mechanical contractor is S.A. Mechanical, Fargo, N.D.