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Shelby praises U.S. Geological Survey’s relocation of Hydrologic Instrumentation Facility to University of Alabama

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has announced the relocation of its Hydrologic Instrumentation Facility (HIF) to the University of Alabama. HIF, the agency’s engineering and science facility, supports research and networks relating to the USGS Water Enterprise.

The relocation is expected to bring economic development to the region as the agency’s facility will provide instrumentation and equipment services to USGS Science Centers and external partners.

According to a release, the 95,000-square-foot facility will include a hydraulics lab, water quality labs, field testing facilities, environmental chambers, sensor innovation space, warehouse, training labs, network operations center, and administrative offices.

U.S. Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.) on Thursday commended the agency for the relocation of its facility to the university.

“I am pleased that the U.S. Geological Survey has chosen to relocate its Hydrologic Instrumentation Facility to The University of Alabama, a leading innovator in the field of water research and science,” stated Shelby. “This new facility will expand on the Alabama Water Institute’s critical mission of furthering the study of water as a weather-related threat, as a resource, and for distribution. I look forward to the transformative discoveries that will come from this new partnership, as well as the economic benefit it will bring to Alabama.”

Congress, through its fiscal year 2020 and fiscal year 2021 appropriations bills, dedicated $38.5 million to replace current aging USGS facilities located at NASA’s Stennis Space Center in Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.

Shelby’s Senate office advised that UA was selected as the relocation destination due to the water-related research and development currently conducted on its campus, including the National Water Center.

Construction is anticipated to begin in late 2022, with USGS fully transitioning into the facility in 2023.

Dylan Smith is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @DylanSmithAL