By: John Kubal, The Brookings Register
In ceremonies a couple hours apart Thursday afternoon on the South Dakota State University campus, the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences scored a couple of big wins in the world of research.
First, at 2 p.m., came the grand opening of the Plant Science Research Support Facility; following at 4:30 p.m. came the groundbreaking for the new South Dakota Animal Disease Research & Diagnostic Laboratory.
Gov. Dennis Daugaard, SDSU President Barry Dunn, faculty, stakeholders from a variety of agricultural organizations and members of the public were on hand for both ceremonies.
A standing-room-only audience filled the vast interior of the 17,000-square-foot Support Facility, which when up and running will be a research leader in programs dealing with oat breeding, spring wheat breeding, winter wheat breeding and crop performance testing. Those in attendance stayed afterward for tours and SDSU ice cream.
The new $58 million ADRDL will have an advanced bio-security level and a drive-up, drop-off capability for leaving samples for testing.
The present laboratory is 50 years old and in need of replacement.
“Today we start replacing old equipment, improving aging infrastructure, accommodating exciting new technology and meeting future laboratory safety standards,” the governor said.
Following the remarks of several other dignitaries, 23 men and women got behind their decorated shovels and ceremoniously moved some dirt.