The Bigelow Center for Blue Biotechnology, a private, non-profit institute studying ocean science, has broken ground on the first phase of a $10 million expansion in East Boothbay, Maine.

This first building in a new 64-acre ocean research and education campus, will measure 25,600 square feet and stand three stories tall. It is expected to house the world’s first microbial single cell genomics facility, the Provasoli-Guillard National Center for the Culture of Marine Phytoplankton, various laboratories, offices, a café and conference space.

The building is designed to be energy efficient, and the lab will seek LEED Gold designation for the project, the highest level of green-building approval.

“By providing access to frontline research at the laboratory, the BCBB will foster collaboration with the private sector and facilitate partnerships with companies in the pharmaceutical, aquaculture, environmental impact assessment, analytical instrument and biofuels industries,” said David Coit, chair of the Laboratories Board of Trustees, in a statement. 


The Bigelow Laboratory is currently housed in space rented from the Maine Department of Marine Resources in West Boothbay Harbor. In June 2009, the lab received $4.5 million from the taxpayer-funded Maine Technology Asset Fund.

Bigelow Lab was founded in 1974.