New Science Complex FAQs

By Towson University on January 11, 2018

Scheduled to open in fall 2020, here are answers to frequently asked questions about TU’s new home of scientific research and discovery.

When the spring semester begins this January, the Stephens Hall lawn might look a bit different to the Towson University community. 

That’s because the grass in front of TU’s landmark building are filled with construction vehicles and trailers to accommodate the work that is being put into Towson University’s new Science Complex. Fortunately, those eyesores are temporary. 

Scheduled to open in fall of 2020, Towson University broke ground on the new Science Complex last fall. The complex will be located along York Road, between Stephens Hall and the 7800 building. 

When the new Science Complex opens, it will be the largest academic building on TU’s campus and will feature 50 teaching laboratories, 30 research laboratories, 50 classrooms, 10 collaborative student spaces, eight lecture halls and one outdoor classroom leading into the Glen Arboretum.

The complex will also include a rain garden for storm water control, planetarium, observatory, rooftop greenhouse, museum and vivarium.  

The New Science Complex comes with the continuous growth and enrollment in the Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science & Mathematics (FCSM). FCSM has seen its enrollment grow by 132 percent from 1997 to 2017, and now has over 4,600 students.

Currently, the college is housed in Smith Hall, which was constructed 50 years ago when the entire university had just 3,537 students.

To help keep the TU community up-to-date on the project, and to answer the many questions about the new Science Complex, Towson University Facilities Management wants to share frequently asked questions regarding the building process. 


The building complex will be complete by August 2020.  Construction is expected to take approximately 33 months. This is a fairly typical timeline for a project of this nature.
In consultation with the Glen Arboretum Board of Directors, established in 2012 by Towson University to oversee development of the Glen, it was determined that approximately 89 trees needed to be removed from the Glen to accommodate the Science Complex site and adjacent stormwater management facilities. Those 89 trees will be replaced with 98 trees that will be planted when construction is completed.  In addition, TU and the Maryland Department of Natural Resources have committed to protect other forested areas throughout our campus to further mitigate any potential environmental impact.  In total, Towson University has allocated 27 acres of forested area for perpetual easement, which restricts future development and ensures forest preservation.
The staging area in front of Stephens Hall is merely a temporary space for contractors to use during construction. The big lawn in front of Stephens Hall will be restored to its pre-construction condition when the new Science Complex is complete.
Members of the Tiny Tigers student organization, along with retired faculty member Dr. Meg Algren, relocated two cat shelters that were in the construction area to another part of the Glen. Three cats lived in the affected area, but they have found a new part of the Glen to claim as their territory. Approximately 30 cats call the Glen their home. This population is fairly stable because of our trap/neuter/return program. All shelters in the Glen have been re-hayed for the winter; student, faculty and staff volunteers feed the cats daily.
Until the complex opens in fall 2020.
Exterior walkways will be built on both the east and west sides of the building.
Pedestrians will able to use outdoor walkways, or walk through the new Science Complex, to go to Stephens Hall or other academic buildings. In addition, the new Science Complex design includes ADA compliant routes from Glen Garage to the campus core (Stephens Hall and points north).
Bateman’s customer parking is available on the lower level of the Glen Garage in clearly designated spaces. Please read signs in the area to ensure you are in the correct spaces, and see the booth attendant for a parking pass and instructions regarding the use of the pass.  
To meet parking needs for this project, some spaces in the Glen Garage were converted from Commuter to Faculty/Staff spaces. Commuter and visitor spaces are typically full from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday through Thursday; during these times, students will find ample parking available in the lots near Unitas Stadium.  On the rare occasion when faculty/staff parking in the Glen may be full, additional faculty/staff parking is available in the back area (lot 24) behind the Administration building.
We do not expect any significant traffic issues on York Road as part of this project.  All construction-related personnel have been instructed not to block lanes on York Road with their vehicles.  Any equipment staging will take place on university-owned property only.
The west lower level of the building will open to the Glen woods, allowing for outdoor access.  This outdoor area adjacent to the building will provide opportunities for student learning and engagement in a beautiful outdoor setting.
Check out our university’s community service page and our Glen Arboretum page to get started. To make a financial gift in support of Towson University’s trees, visit the Glen Arboretum Operating Fund page or the Glen Arboretum Endowment page.
Get more information about other campus construction projects

The TU community can also keep up with the other construction projects around Towson University’s campus including the Burdick Expansion and the Residence Tower Renovation.

If you have additional questions regarding construction impacts or project schedules, contact Facilities Management.