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UW System buildings in need of repairs

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MADISON (CBS 58) -- UW System officials say facilities around the state are in dire need of repairs and renovations. 

That includes some university buildings right here in Milwaukee. 

The governor's capital budget released last week calls for more than $1 billion dollars for repairs and renovations across the UW System.

UW System Ray Ross believes repairs, renovations, and replacements of current buildings on campuses around the state is critical to the state's future.

"The need for talent in this state is so critical, if we want to attract, develop and retain talent, we need the kind of facilities that will make that not only very easy to do but will enhance that process," said Ray Cross, President, UW System.

The governor's capital budget includes four major projects for UW-Milwaukee, including nearly $130 million for a new chemistry building.

The current one is 46 years old and Cross says it's time to bring a 21st century facility to UWM's campus.

"How we teach chemistry today,  the fundamentals may be the same but the way it's done today is much different than it was in 1965," said Cross.

The new chemistry building will include labs for STEM education research, have collaborative areas for specialized equipment and research, and connects utilities from the Kenwood Interdisciplinary Research Center.

The plan also allows short-term renovations in the current building until the new one is ready.

"By investing in the replacement, the renovation or repair of these facilities, what you're doing is investing in the future of the people who will drive this economy," said Cross.

The capital budget will have to go through the republican-controlled legislature. UW System Ray Cross will tour the current chemistry building on UWM's Campus tomorrow morning. 

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