New research facility planned for UH-Hilo

Plans are underway to build a new research facility on the University of Hawaii at Hilo campus to jointly house the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory and the Pacific Islands Ecosystems Research Center.

The 60,000-square-foot Integrated Research Center will bring together staff from both HVO and PIERC to monitor, investigate and assess hazards from active volcanoes and earthquakes in Hawaii, according to a story posted Monday on the UH website.


“The collaboration will provide the scientific understanding and technologies needed to support and implement sound management and conservation of biological resources in Hawaii and other Pacific island locations,” the story read.

“At UH-Hilo, we are honored to host HVO on our campus and excited about the benefits that this partnership can have for our students, who will be able to interact with HVO and PIERC staff and envision careers in the earth sciences,” said UH-Hilo Chancellor Bonnie Irwin. architectural firm AHL to design the research facility

The U.S. Geological Survey selected architectural firm AHL to design the research facility, according to the story.

A related 13,000-square-foot field station is being built in the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.

Designed and constructed on separate sites, the laboratory, administration and support facilities are being planned concurrently to support USGS’s mission to enrich the Hawaii Island research community.


“We are honored to be chosen to design these significant projects that are exciting and have a mission that resonates with us,” said Nathan Saint Clare, AHL principal-in-charge. “We plan to provide state-of-the-art facilities that will enrich the Hawaii Island community for years to come.”

The cost of building and designing the facilities was not provided in the story.

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