Bond helps Wellesley College expand science center

Wellesley College is upgrading and expanding its science center with the help of state financing. MassDevelopment last March issued a $96.5 million bond to support the construction project that is being undertaken by the private liberal arts college for women.

The $215 million project, which began in June and is due to be completed in 2021, involves renovating the existing campus science center, and expanding it to include a separate new building that will be constructed on the nearby site of the former Sage Hall.

The bond was sold through a public offering underwritten by Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch/Bank of America.


When the project is complete, the expanded science center will also house additional laboratory, classroom, and office spaces as well as new teaching and research greenhouses.

The college is also using bond proceeds for other capital projects, such as the renovation of residence halls, purchase and installation of equipment for its co-generation plant; renovation of a health and counseling building; and the installation of an elevator in a historic building on campus.

A small portion of the bond proceeds will be used by the college to refinance previously issued debt.

Founded in 1875, Wellesley serves 2,400 undergraduate students on its 500-acre campus.

“The new science center will reinforce Wellesley’s position as a leader in STEM education for women, providing our students with a uniquely inspiring learning environment,” Piper Orton, the college’s vice president for finance and administration, said in a statement.

John Laidler can be reached at laidler@globe.com.