Behlen Laboratory

University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Behlen Laboratory

Behlen Laboratory was constructed in 1965 to accommodate the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) Department of Physics and Astronomy. It consists of two floors below grade and three floors above grade. The sub-basement, which extends beyond the building footprint, was originally designed to accommodate a nuclear accelerator laboratory.

In 2010 most functions, with the exception of the Extreme Light Laboratory, were moved from Behlen Laboratory. In 2012, the University of Nebraska announced a long-term partnership with the United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) to create a University-Affiliated Research Center (UARC). UARC is a university-wide initiative, drawing on a broad range of expertise from all four University of Nebraska campuses.  Faculty have the opportunity to participate if their research aligns with federal funding opportunities. Their work is solutions-oriented, focused on anticipating and meeting USSTRATCOM’s needs.

Sinclair Hille and CRB teamed to design flexible, multidisciplinary, economical and yet very high quality research spaces with enhanced standardized utilities. It is designed to facilitate the demands of export control research and possess the physical infrastructure requirements necessary to accommodate leasable research spaces requiring high levels of security.

The project also provides program-specific renovations which allow functionality for a number of uses. Level 1 houses a conference room, collaboration space, and thirteen offices. Level 2 includes three leasable labs, a physics laser lab, two lab support spaces, two offices and small conference room. Level 3 contains one chemistry lab, one physics laser lab, two interchangeable labs, two lab support spaces and two offices.


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I enjoyed working with SHA on the Canopy Street Project.  It was a very complex project which required both large scale design thought as well as a focus on small details. Their professionalism impressed me as well as all of the other clients in the project from restaurants, to hotel operations through condo buyers, SHA continued to move the project forward and solve problems with all in mind.  As a licensed architect myself I really appreciated their willingness to partner with me and listen to my design ideas while improving the direction time and time again. Quite simply, Canopy Street would not have been nearly as successful without SHA’s talented staff.

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