C.W. Driver Companies, a leading builder serving California since 1919, today announced the groundbreaking on Orange Coast College’s new two-story Chemistry Building. The 43,800-square-foot project will include nine laboratories configured to accommodate larger class sizes and increase lab capacities with individual workstations. The building will also house lecture halls, faculty offices, and additional meeting spaces.

The project requires demolition of the outdated Literature & Languages Building, originally built in 1976, which had in the past been known as the Virgil D. Sessions Building. The retired building was vacated after the new Literature & Languages/ Social & Behavioral Sciences complex was completed in Spring 2021, also a C.W. Driver Companies project. The Chemistry Building is the latest of several projects that C.W. Driver Companies has built at Orange Coast College. In addition, they managed the construction of OCC’s Language Arts & Social Sciences Building, Kinesiology and Athletics Complex and Student Union Complex.

“Seeing these new buildings take shape on campus, and knowing that we have been a big part in their creation, brings us great satisfaction,” said David Amundson, Project Executive at C.W. Driver Companies. “We are proud of our longstanding partnership with the District and look forward to working on this newest addition.”

The new Chemistry Building will serve multiple programs and will feature updated instructional technology and infrastructure systems, including exterior circulation and HVAC systems. Several collaboration areas will provide options for students to gather, including outdoor study areas, a lobby, and social deck area.

When complete, the new building will increase the laboratory capacity by more than 60% compared to the previous building, and will help facilitate students bound for the college’s popular nursing program, as well as those transferring to four-year colleges and universities.

C.W. Driver Companies is collaborating with tBP Architecture on the project. Large windows provide ample views to students performing lab work. Exhibit display cabinets provide opportunities to showcase the program’s offerings and accomplishments. Construction is expected to be completed by the end of 2024. Other notable higher education projects by C.W. Driver Companies include; the Riverside CCD – Riverside City College, Life Science & Physical Science Remodel; Pomona College Rains Athletic Center; California State University Dominguez Hill’s Science and Innovation Building; Mesa College’s Fine Arts Building; Chapman University’s Keck Center for Science and Engineering; Cal Poly Pomona’s Student Services Building; and Vanguard University’s Waugh Student Center.


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