Forrest Scene

Groundbreaking set for Kansas Bureau of Investigation Forensic Science Center at Washburn University

The Kansas Bureau of Investigation (KBI) and Washburn University officials will break ground on a $55 million forensic laboratory at 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 30 at Durow Drive and Washburn Avenue, Washburn campus. Construction of the facility is expected to begin in May 2014 with completion set for October 2015.

The KBI Forensic Science Center will house the state crime lab, with specific spaces in the facility for departments such as biology, DNA, toxicology, chemistry, firearm/tool mark, latent prints, trace evidence and digital forensics, as well as vehicle processing and evidence storage. The three-story, 100,000-square-foot laboratory will replace KBI’s existing facility that is located in the basement of a former Topeka school built in 1928.

Approximately 70 scientists and technicians will work at the facility once it is completed. Locating the KBI state crime lab on Washburn’s campus will benefit the criminal justice and forensic chemical science degree programs already offered at Washburn. Additionally, new programs in the areas of biological, computer/digital and anthropological forensics will be offered. The new laboratory and its location also will enhance KBI’s recruitment, retention and training of scientists.

The partners on this project include AccuTec Services, Inc.; Bartlett and West; City of Topeka; Frankfurt Short Bruza; McClaren, Wilson & Lawrie Inc. Architects Planners; McCown Gordon Construction; PGAV Architects; SHW Group, Architects Engineers Planners; State of Kansas, Department of Administration and Office of Facilities and Procurement Management; Topeka Public Building Commission; and Washburn University.

For more information, visit Join the conversation on social media with #KBIGroundbreaking and #KBIatWashburn

KBI building rendering


Mark Malick, special agent in charge, Kansas Bureau of Investigation, 785.296.7785
Amanda Hughes, university relations, 785.670.2153