It will be the newest building for Texas A&M-Corpus Christi’s Life Sciences departments.
Dr. Frank Pezold, the dean of the science and engineering department, recalls when he first arrived at the school about 13 years ago.
“When I first came here as dean and I was touring, people were showing me their labs,” he said. “I remember Dr. Buck saying come see my lab, it’s this closet.”
But fast forward to 2016.
Pezold says students and staff really felt the need for a building dedicated to a more hands-on approach.
“It’s an old concept, hands-on learning if you have somebody you’re hiring to build your house you don’t want somebody who’s just studied about it and read about it in a book,” Pezold said. “You want someone who has experience doing it.”
About $60 million was appropriated for Tidal Hall. And in late 2016, construction began.
“As far as construction projects go, it’s been fairly smooth,” said Lawrence Gaertner, manager for AGCM Construction. “And then we’ve had a few things like Hurricane Harvey set us back a couple of weeks, maybe.”
The three-story building has nine teaching labs, two research wings on each floor where both undergrad and graduate students can work together and the core support facilities in the center.
Pezold says this new addition is one more step forward for the university and not just the college.
“We’re positioning ourselves to be the school noted in Texas for its marine programs,” Pezold said. “We’re right on the coast. We have been able to attract an extremely strong faculty working with coastal and marine systems and I don’t see that changing.”
The staff will begin moving into their new offices next month.
Students are expected to begin taking classes in the facility this fall.