Last week it was announced that the new Life Science Building risks considerable budget cuts to stay within budget. Difficult ground conditions and extra engineering costs are the main reasons.
The Ministry of Education has asked the University of Oslo to work with Statsbygg to review the project and illustrate the consequences of budget cuts for this project. The Ministry of Education’s deadline is 30 September.
– Now, together with Statsbygg, we will carefully review the project and describe budget cut consequences for the Life Science Building. It is important for the University of Oslo to reach the goals we have set for the Life Science building. These include the development of the university as a leading arena for research on life sciences, which will secure a competitive position for Norway within the field. It is also important for us to meet the government’s requirement that the convergence concept should form the basis of the building’s purpose,” says university director Arne Benjaminsen.
Will investigate three alternatives
The Ministry of Education has asked Statsbygg and UiO to jointly assess the following three alternatives:
- Considerable cuts and limitations for cost development in the current project
- Alternatives to redefine the current project
- Stopping the current project
The last two alternatives involve an assessment of future building needs for the affected research groups, for example renovation of existing building or scattered localization.
Preliminary report 15 September
Important dates ahead are 9 September, when this is an agenda item in the University board meeting. On 15 September the Ministry of Education excepts a preliminary report. The deadline for submitting the investigation is 30 September.
– This will be an intense process, where we will need both internal and external clarifications. We will inform people as much as we can, both in meetings and in other channels. As far as hall meetings for the most affected, these will be organized locally, says Benjaminsen.
Organizing the process
The task group consists of Per Morten Sandset, Gunnar Dick, Leif Johnny Johannessen and Karoline Strand, who will liaise with Statsbygg. In addition, a working group consisting of the abovementioned task group, as well as heads of department, NCMM director, the UiO:Life Science director, and the Science Library Manager has been established.
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