Building a new facility for research, laboratories, teaching and office space is currently my number one priority as Dean of the Cullen College of Engineering. It is not only necessary for our students, faculty and researchers, but it is necessary for our industry, our community, and the entire city of Houston.
The planned construction of the Multidisciplinary Research and Engineering Building (MREB) is addressing our vital need for undergraduate and graduate academic and research space for the University of Houston and the Cullen College of Engineering. This new facility, scheduled for groundbreaking in the summer of 2014 and occupation in the spring of 2016, will be a combination of core research facilities, research laboratories and offices to house a number of faculty and graduate students within the college. This state-of-the-art academic and research facility will contain highly specialized instructional laboratories that will support our mission to produce the best and brightest engineers not only for the city of Houston but for the rest of the world.
The $51 million facility will reside on the footprint of the old Y-Building, just east of Engineering Building 1, and will provide us with much needed space so we can continue to grow the Cullen College of Engineering.
With this new facility, we will be able to increase our annual research expenditures to $36 million per year, which should in turn promote approximately $612 million worth of economic activity in Houston alone. Our graduate student population will grow by 250 students and we will have the state-of-the-art research facilities needed to attract leading faculty, including members of the prestigious National Academy of Engineering.
To make it happen, we need your help. The commitment from the University of Houston is strong but we need the support of our alumni and friends to make this building a reality. I ask our alumni, friends and supporters to explore our plans for this building. See what we plan to do and what we can do, and then help the Cullen College of Engineering become an even greater resource for our university, our students and our community.
Please support us in our mission to elevate our wonderful city to the "Engineering Capital of the World."