advertisement
June 9, 2017

Downeast Institute breaks ground on $5.8M expansion

An architect's rendering shows what the new residence hall will look like when Downeast Institute's $5.8 million expansion is completed.

The Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research and Education broke ground today on a $5.8 million expansion that includes lab space to meet a variety of industry needs.

The expansion also includes space for additional researchers, an expansion of its hatchery and a residence hall to increase its educational programming.

Located on Great Wass Island in Beals, the Downeast Institute operates an 8,000-square-foot shellfish hatchery raising millions of juvenile bivalves for marine research, public stock enhancement and aquaculture development. It serves as the Marine Science Field Station of the University of Maine at Machias and also partners with the Alliance for Maine's Marine Economy.

Funding for the expansion was provided by the Next Generation Foundation, the Harold Alfond Foundation and the state of Maine's Maine Technology Institute.

The groundbreaking ceremony was attended by staff, supporters from the federal and state government, business, fishermen, students and members of the local community, according to a news release.



A before-and-after view showing the footprint of Downeast Institute's $5.8 million expansion that includes lab space to meet a variety of industry needs, space for additional researchers, an expansion of its hatchery and a residence hall to increase its educational programming.

Photos courtesy / Downeast Institute for Applied Marine Research and Education

Brian Beal, a marine ecologist at the University of Maine at Machias, founded what is now the Downeast Institute 30 years ago. He was joined by local middle and high school students to break ground with a gold clam hoe.

A retired official from the National Science Foundation who was involved in the initial phase of the institute's planned expansion in 2010, flew in from Washington, D.C., to offer words of congratulations, along with officials representing Maine's congressional delegation, funding agencies and the University of Maine at Machias.

During the ceremony, Beal shared the story of how the organization started out in a borrowed clam shucking shed and has grown to become the "easternmost marine research laboratory and education center in the United States, offering research capacity for the scientific community and entrepreneurs, which will result in economic and educational opportunities for the people of coastal Maine and beyond."

Construction Management services are being provided by Bowman Constructors of Newport and the architect for the project is Sealander Architects in Ellsworth. Both were on hand for the celebration.

Comments

Type your comment here:

Sign up now to get statewide business news each day with the Daily Report

 
Today's Daily Report
Today's Poll Is Maine an "anti-business state"?<>
ADVERTISEMENTS
Most Popular on Facebook