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Inspiring Scientific Innovation: USDA Agricultural Research Facilities


Written by: Juliana Choy Sommer
Published: March 13, 2024
Category: Featured Clients

The official ribbon cutting ceremony for the Sam Farr United States Crop Improvement and Protection Research Center in Salinas, California took place in November 2023. Priority Architectural Graphics was pleased to be selected to design, fabricate and install custom commercial signage for this new 117,000 square foot government facility which was designed by HDR and constructed under the direction of Mortenson as General Contractor.

The Salinas research center will replace and expand the current Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Crop Improvement and Protection Research Laboratory, which has been located at the same site since the end of World War II.  The project includes the construction of an East and West Wing Laboratory and Office facility encompassing over 70,000 square feet and a 38,000 square foot Headhouse and Greenhouse facility. These new facilities will house employees from ARS, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, and the University of California at Davis and will allow for the expansion of the ARTC research program with a mission to improve germplasm and bacterial diseases affecting crops, develop pesticide alternatives and methods to control weeds, and improve production practices including insect and disease control.

“This research center is on the cutting edge of technology and within its walls are solutions to address viral, fungal and bacterial diseases impacting our nation’s fruit and vegetable industries,” said USDA Chief Scientist and Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young. “This expansion is part of USDA’s commitment to support innovative crop research that will best serve our customers, stakeholders and the scientific community.”

The scope of work for Priority Architectural Graphics included exterior and interior identity signage including monument sign lettering as well as wayfinding and code signage.

Source: Daniel Dreifuss

“Priority Architectural Graphics was a great partner for Mortenson and the USDA on the USDA ARTC project.  Their office team was helpful, responsive, and quick to come to the table with solutions.  Their field team was easy to work with and executed work with a high level of safety and quality.  I would recommend working with Priority on any of my future projects” noted Cameron Mehls, Project Manager at M.A. Mortenson Company.

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