(Lack of) budget puts brakes on building

Illinois Capitol News

UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS (WCIA) — Construction on a campus building might come to a halt June 30, if state legislators can’t agree on a budget. If it happens, it could increase the total cost of the building.

The work was originally supposed to help the state budget. Senator Chapin Rose (R) said the lab was supposed to help the economy, pulling the state out of its rut. But, that rut could potentially be the downfall of the building before it can even begin.

The $26 million Integrated Bioprocessing Research Lab will be used to process bio products like corn and soybeans. Construction started in 2014. It was then stopped for an entire year due to the same problem: the state budget.

Rose previously said the building would bring 20,000 jobs to the area. The last time construction was stopped, it caused a 30% increase in the already $32 million cost.

A UI spokesperson says the halt will only increase that cost and put many out of work, from construction workers to electricians.

Rose says it will hurt the university if the budget stops construction. Losing this momentum send a bad message to industrial partners which could mean a major setback.

Grant money awarded to the university for construction will also be impacted. It will most likely be delayed if the university receives any money at all. It was originally given millions on dollars from the state in 2006.

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