The University of North Carolina (UNC)-Chapel Hill has been awarded $14.5 million in federal stimulus funds to expand one of its research facilities. The funding, provided by the National Institutes of Health, is being used to replace the aging Bingham Facility with two new buildings. The new structures will house the hogs and dogs used for studies on muscular dystrophy, heart disease and hemophilia. A third building, subsidized with unrelated funds, will contain veterinary services, laboratories and offices. Construction is slated to begin in 2011, with completion in 2013.
The current facility dates to the 1970s and has had multiple leaks in its wastewater treatment system, causing polluted water to enter Collins Creek. The university is currently transporting its wastewater to a treatment plant in Chapel Hill until it finalizes a long-term method of processing waste safely at the site.
“I think the grant offers the opportunity to do Bingham right. It allows us to plan for a long-term sustainable operation at minimal impact to the neighborhood,” said Bob Lowman, associate vice chancellor for research at UNC-Chapel Hill.
“The researchers whose work will be supported by the Bingham Facility are national leaders in discovering new gene therapy for hemophilia, muscular dystrophy and cardiovascular disease,” said Tony Waldrop, vice chancellor for research and economic development at UNC-Chapel Hill, in a statement. “They give new hope daily to patients with these diseases.”
Source: Newsoberver.com, April 7, 2010