UWM chemistry building project reaches construction milestone

MILWAUKEE_ The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee will celebrate a significant construction milestone Thursday, Jan. 26, at 10 a.m., when the highest beam is lifted into place atop the new chemistry building.

The topping-off ceremony will be held at the American Family Insurance Dream Studio in the Lubar Entrepreneurship Center, 2100 E. Kenwood Blvd., which is just east of the project and overlooks the construction site. Guests are invited to enjoy warm beverages with assorted toppings while watching a crane hoist the final beam into position.

Members of the media are welcome to attend and film the ceremony. Note to photographers: Please contact the UWM Media Services team if you would like a higher vantage point as the beam is being put in place.

Chancellor Mark Mone will lead a brief program that will include state Rep. Jessie Rodriguez and James T. Harvey, senior vice president and chief science officer for NorthStar Medical Radioisotopes.

In building construction, a topping-off ceremony is typically held when the last beam (or its equivalent) is placed atop a structure. The tradition originated in ancient Scandinavia.

Construction of the four-story, 163,400-square-foot building, which started a year ago, is scheduled to be completed in late 2023 or early 2024.

The new building will serve as a gateway to the STEM departments at UWM and help faculty and staff to better prepare students interested in careers in fast-growing fields in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Nearly 5,000 students take chemistry and biochemistry classes each year.

A webcam is also available to track construction progress.