College of Lake County board members made a financial commitment Tuesday night for a planned $23.5 million science building on the Grayslake main campus.
Officials said CLC expects to receive nearly $17.6 million or 75 percent of the estimated construction cost from the state.
To get the process rolling, CLC board members Tuesday voted 7-0 in favor of directing $1.2 million into an account established for the project with the Illinois Capital Development Board, which will be used to begin the design and construction bidding process.
CLC President Jerry Weber said renovation of an existing structure and adjacent new construction for the science building is necessary because it is a discipline that'll be needed more than ever for future jobs.
"Many of those jobs will be related to science, technology, engineering or math," Weber said. "All of our nursing students have to use the science (building). All of our health care (students), they have to use science. And everybody in our technology needs that, too."
Jeffrey Sronkoski, a principal at Legat Architects in Chicago, said the entire project would span nearly 70,000 square feet. The new construction would cover 42,568 square feet, with the balance involving renovation of an existing science area.
Sronkoski said highlights of the new science building would include laboratories for microbiology, chemistry, engineering and organic instruments. He said it's hoped construction starts in January and is substantially completed by June 1, 2015.
CLC board member Richard Anderson expressed his excitement for the project. "I'm anxious to get it started," he said.
Projects under the state's Capital Development Board's wing require a local agency to spend 25 percent of a project's estimated cost before the state covers the remaining 75 percent, CLC officials said.
In all, CLC expects to contribute in the neighborhood of $5.4 million in local money toward the $23.5 million budgeted for the science building. CLC plans to obtain a loan for its share of the cost, Vice President for Administrative Affairs David Agazzi said.
Agazzi said the state has started releasing money for its share of construction costs.