University spaces that have an impact far beyond the lives of students.
A stunning new landmark for downtown Windsor
The old Armouries Building built in downtown Windsor in 1900 to train soldiers heading off to war has been converted for a new generation into a fully equipped student arts centre, as the University of Windsor deepens its roots in its community. The new architecturally-stunning School of Creative Arts, featuring a dozen music practice rooms, a performance hall, photography and painting studios and classrooms, is now home to 500 students, faculty and staff following the historic armoury’s conversion into light, lofty spaces intended to foster creativity and serve the local community.
A holy place to celebrate the arts in Ottawa
Carleton University has purchased Ottawa’s historic Dominion-Chalmers United Church, and aims to enhance its role as a cultural and performing arts hub for the community as well as a space for the university’s growing music program. The church, which has a seating capacity of approximately 1,000, will also continue to host religious services for the church’s congregation. Renovations will be undertaken to create high-quality recording spaces and make the facility more attractive as a rental venue for community and arts groups.
Sports as a community anchor
University athletics facilities bring benefits to the public in both large cities and smaller communities. Ryerson University transformed the historic Maple Leaf Gardens into the state-of the-art Mattamy Athletics Centre, where the public can take part in free skates or use other facilities for a fee. The University of Toronto’s Olympic-size aquatics centre is also open to community use. In many university cities, varsity facilities are a hub of the community, such as Algoma’s University’s George Leach Centre, which recently underwent expansion and whose fitness centre and rental facilities were recently voted the best in Sault Ste. Marie by the public.
Arts centre drives thriving cultural community
The Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts is a home for the creative arts at Queen’s University and a hub of vibrant artistic study, creation and exhibition for the Kingston community. The 80,000 square-foot facility brings together music, drama, arts and film students in a combined learning centre, enhancing their skills for future careers and serving as a cultural centre for the city. The facility houses a 560-seat performance hall, studio theatre, film screening room, laboratories, and a rehearsal hall that exactly mimics the acoustics of the performance hall to allow for a seamless transition from practice to performance. The Centre also houses an Art and Media Lab, a “living gallery” to inspire creative thinking and innovative learning for Queen’s students and local community members, as well as for professional and emerging artists.