The new Computer and Automotive Engineering Building broke ground on May 22 at the Davis Campus in Layton, Utah.

With a large influx of students in Davis County, the new building seeks to provide room for those that wish to take classes closer to home. The construction for the 50,000-square-foot building includes a campus entrance from SR-193 to allow easier access for students.

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The plan for the exterior of the new Computer and Automotive Engineering building. (WSU)

This building is part of a three-building plan to improve and accommodate the growing STEM fields.

“This building is part of a three-building grand project,” Dean David Ferro said. “We will build this building in Davis, replace the Technical Education building in Ogden with the new Noorda building and update the Engineering Technology building in Ogden.”

In addition to these three projects, the Science Lab building is also being demolished, though there is no released plan of a building that will be replacing it.

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President Brad Mortensen is joined by General Stacey Hawkins and Officers from Hill Air Force Base Utah to break ground on the new Computer and Automotive Engineering building. (WSU)

The funding for this $20-million building came from the Noorda and Stewart foundations. The state is assisting with the three-building project that is underway. As of now, the name for the building is the Computer and Automotive Engineering Building, which could change as the building progresses. Construction is expected to be complete in the summer of 2020.

The groundwork for the building has been in the planning stages for more than a year. Before that, Weber State University was in contact with donors and the community to organize a solution to growth in STEM, EAST and in the student population at large.

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Renderings of the new Computer and Automotive Engineering building. (WSU)

“Our growth has been so phenomenal that we are bursting at the seams. This building puts us a long way towards accommodating that growth for the foreseeable future,” Ferro said. “This college has a lot of pressure on it from industry and the legislature to produce graduates because of their desperate need for our graduate’s skills. Their support will help us reach the goals of our community and nation.”

The building will house software engineering, networking, cyber security and web development classes, which will be taught on both campuses. However, the automotive courses will remain on the Davis campus, as the equipment will be hard to difficult on both campuses.

These burgeoning majors have required WSU to grow with them, especially as the fields have grown more in demand in the community at large.

“Majoring in Engineering, Computer Science — stem, in general — are opportunities to improve life for people,” Ferro said. “Our majors create economic prosperity, can raise people out of poverty, help protect our freedoms and more.”

In addition to being a place to teach students, the building will showcase the principals that are being taught in the classrooms.

The mechanical systems will be on display for students to learn how they work throughout the building and will be available as a resource for students and faculty.

The building will also be energy efficient and will be a stage for majors such as Construction Management and Mechanical and Electrical Engineering.

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