NEW BRUNSWICK - Rutgers University is bringing psychology and language labs and robotics to the city's downtown, close to restaurants and mass transit and across the street from the proposed massive technology hub.
"This will allow for a collision of various disciplines that will enhance creative and innovation and give students opportunities to interact with different faculty," said Christopher Molloy, interim chancellor for the university's New Brunswick campus.
His comments came at the ceremonial opening of new School of Arts and Sciences offices that take up three floors of what has been designated as 1 Spring Street, located on that street between Paterson and Church streets.
Though only one block from bustling George Street in the downtown, the offices are several blocks from the university's College Avenue campus.
Peter March, executive dean of the School of Arts and Sciences, said parts of that department are spread out across the College Avenue, Busch, Livingston and Douglas campuses.
"1 Spring Street is right in the middle. It's opposite the train station," March said, noting the second floor will house computer technology and robotics.
"We are crushed for space for computer sciences," March added. "Four years ago, we had less than 100 graduates in computer science. This last spring it was over 500," he said.
On the second floor will be psychology laboratories, where people can be measured for emotional and physiological responses, including heart rate and blood pressure, when reacting to various conditions. There is also a phlebotomy lab where staff can draw blood for testing.
A language center on the fourth floor will have instruction in Spanish, Portuguese and other languages using audio, video and computer media. There will also be a videoconferencing facility for students in a classroom to communicate with people at other universities.
The building is directly across the street from the former Ferren Deck parking garage that was demolished for development of the proposed Innovation and Technology hub, to provide more than 2 million square feet of research and office space in the city's downtown.