A new state crime lab is opening in Anchorage this week, as construction workers put the final touches on the building and employees start to move in and test new equipment.
The building cost $87.5 million and was designed for more than 80 employees. It contains more than 84,000 square feet of currently utilized space with an additional 15,000 square feet of unfinished space devoted to future growth.
The new facility will replace the existing 19,000-square-foot crime lab off Tudor Road, which was built in 1986 and designed for about 20 employees.
The new building was built off the Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway and is flanked by trees that can be viewed from windows throughout the structure.
There’s a large, rainbow-colored glass structure in front of the building that signifies the journey victims go through from crime to resolution.
The lab is also expected to speed up the amount of time it takes to analyze samples for law enforcement -- including a backlog of thousands of samples that haven't yet been processed.
“We’re hoping within a year of being operational here that all the backlogs are eradicated,” said lab director Orin Dym.
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