Lab upgrade under way

Brentwood addition may increase parking woes


Building Project Manager Brian La Perle checks and secures screws on electrical conduits in the new lab in the Brentwood campus. Photo By Cathie Lawrence.

The laboratory upgrade at the Brentwood campus is under way. Construction began earlier this semester and the new lab is scheduled to be open to students for the upcoming fall semester. The additional space will allow students of the Brentwood campus to forego the need to come to the main Pittsburg campus for biological sciences classes.

While the construction of the new lab is bound to be beneficial to many LMC students, the added number of classes will inevitably contribute to an ever present problem for the Brentwood campus — parking.

In the Jan. 31 edition, the Experience reported about the parking issues in Brentwood with regard to the Sand Creek Business Center restricting students from parking in their private lot. For more information on that story, find the story online under the News tab at

The lab space itself will be finished in late April, but the furnishing of the scientific equipment will take some time, according to Ryan Pedersen, Director, Title III HSI STEM Grant for Los Medanos College.

The addition of up to four new biology classes will allow students to achieve an Associate of Science degree solely by attending the satellite campus.

The scheduling for these new classes, staggered throughout the day, “mitigates some of the pressure on the limited parking available,” said Vice President of Los Medanos College Kevin Horan in an email. With the parking restrictions becoming ever tighter at the campus, the additional influx of potential students could exacerbate the problem even more.

Pedersen offers some relief.

“It is important to remember that most of the students served by the lab will probably draw from existing students that the center would serve already,” he said, “though this may increase the time those students occupy parking spaces as they now take their laboratory courses on site.”

Aside from the students the new lab will bring in, regular student population growth may also contribute to the growing need of additional parking in the area.

Plans are also in the works for the construction of a new, permanent Brentwood campus. According to Pedersen, this center would not be built for “several more years,” and would benefit from the equipment purchased to furnish the new lab.

Pedersen said that, for now, there were no current plans for an expansion to the parking lot.