Board of Trustees announces plans for interdisciplinary data science facility

Dec. 9, 2020, 8:41 p.m.

Stanford’s Board of Trustees approved plans to construct a new interdisciplinary data science building at its Dec. 6 to 8 virtual meeting.

The Bridge Complex for the Digital Future will serve as an interdisciplinary hub for computation and data science, supporting statistics, computer science, symbolic systems and other related departments and programs. The facility will host classrooms, offices, undergraduate study space and interdisciplinary research space.

Board of Trustees Chair Jeff Raikes ’80 said the new facility’s location on campus, at the corner of Jane Stanford Way and Lomita Wall, will place it at the “intersection of many disciplines at Stanford, in the engineering, the arts and the sciences.” The project is expected to be completed in fall 2023. 

The announcement of the Bridge Complex comes three weeks after the University dedicated the Biomedical Innovation Building, which was designed to “foster and catalyze interdisciplinary research” in the School of Medicine. 

Lloyd Minor, dean of the School of Medicine, also updated the Board on planning for the winter quarter and Stanford’s pandemic response. 

Raikes lauded Stanford’s surveillance testing program, which to date has conducted more than 80,000 tests, and the faculty’s creativity and perseverance in upholding the University’s research and teaching mission. He added that instructors in 60 different courses mailed more than 2,000 kits containing course materials to students.

“I know that providing for the health and safety of students and the community is and will continue to be the driving factor in leadership’s decision making as we navigate what are constantly changing circumstances around the pandemic,” Raikes said.

The Board is also seeking to establish “a more organized engagement with our region, nation and world,” according to Raikes. Trustees heard from Megan Swezey Fogarty, associate vice president for community engagement, about “proactively” reaching out to local communities with the more than 70 engagement hubs that exist to interface with the community.

Collaboration with the community is “an important opportunity for Stanford to connect its research and teaching to mutual needs in areas such as sustainability, health, education, and others,” Raikes said.

Contact Benjamin Zaidel at bzaidel ‘at’ and Cameron Ehsan at cehsan ‘at’

Benjamin Zaidel ’24 is a desk editor for the Daily interested in studying Bioengineering. A Los Angeles native, Benjamin believes that 68 degrees should count as sweater weather. Contact him at bzaidel 'at' Ehsan is a junior at Stanford studying neurobiology. He served as a news editor and newsroom development director for Vol. 261 and was the Vol. 260 winter managing editor.

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