Groundbreaking celebration planned for new bee and pollinator research lab

What: Groundbreaking celebration for the new University of Minnesota Bee and Pollinator Research Lab
Where: Near the intersection of Folwell and Gortner Avenues on the U of M’s St. Paul campus
When: 3 p.m., Monday, Aug. 3

Background: The U of M will begin construction later this year on a new, 10,500-square-foot lab facility which will house bee research, led by world-renowned bee expert Marla Spivak. The existing lab is outdated and in poor condition; the new lab will include space for training new scientists as well as conducting ongoing research.

Funding for the $6 million research lab was approved in the 2014 legislative session and the U of M Board of Regents approved its design in May. Construction is scheduled to begin later this summer and will be completed in June 2016.

In addition to research and teaching space, the new facility will include beekeeping and commercial honey extracting equipment, as well as office and storage space. Outside the building, there will be a bee apiary, demonstration pollinator gardens and cold storage.

Monday’s groundbreaking is part of a two-day celebration that includes a fundraising dinner and live auction as well as a “bee edutainment” event featuring Spivak and other bee experts and enthusiasts. Following the groundbreaking ceremony, there will be a public celebration at the current bee lab, near the southwest corner of Larpenteur and Cleveland avenues on the U’s St. Paul campus.

More details about the U of M’s Bee Lab can be found here:

NOTE: Architectural drawings and a site map prepared by architect Alliance are available. Please contact Lacey Nygard at to request them.

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