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Opus Leverages Institutional Construction Expertise for Northwestern College

​With significant enrollment growth in recent years, Northwestern College, located in Orange City, Iowa, needed a new building for its health and natural sciences program. Through Client Direct Services, Opus recently broke ground on their new 61,750-square-foot building.

The building, which will create a grand entrance to the campus on the west side, will include classrooms, labs and faculty offices. It will bring the nursing department, currently located in peripheral and off-campus spaces, to the center of the campus. It will also be home to the chemistry and biology departments. Numerous state-of-the-art laboratories with ample space to accommodate long-running experiments will be included. Larger classrooms will have simulated exam and hospital rooms, replicating actual clinic environments. There will also be flexible learning zones that can be modified to accommodate various classroom requirements. 

Reflecting the health and natural sciences department’s science-on-display philosophy, the new building will feature indoor windows for visibility into classrooms and laboratories, enhancing the learning experience for both students and faculty. There will also be large windows on external walls to bring natural light indoors, and outdoor garden plots, a greenhouse and vivarium will enhance the college’s natural science programs. The building will also have energy efficient mechanical and electrical systems, including a specialized cooling system that makes ice over night when utility rates are lower and uses the ice to cool the facility throughout the day.

The health and natural sciences center will provide a foundation for Northwestern College to develop additional majors in related fields like biochemistry, genetics, healthcare administration and dietetics and nutrition.