Construction at the University of Windsor, May 20, 2016. (Photo by Mike Vlasveld)

University Construction Phase Complete

The president of the University of Windsor says the first half of a major transformation project is finished.

Dr. Alan Wildeman provided an update of the university’s campus transformation plan Tuesday afternoon during a meeting with the U of W Board of Governors. He told the board that with the planned opening later this week of the Armouries development downtown, phase one of the plan is complete.

Phase one of the transformation plan began in 2011 and featured a series of ambitious construction projects at the main west end campus, as well as expansion into the downtown core.

New to the main campus during this phase are the Welcome Centre, which is on the site of the former drama department building and the former Cody Hall residence. The other major new projects are the Joyce Entrepreneurship Centre, home of the school’s innovative Cross Border Institute and now the headquarters of several organizations such as We-Tech Alliance. An adjoining parking structure was also built to alleviate a campus parking pinch. The Ed Lumley Centre for Engineering Innovation was also completed along with a major streetscape project on Sunset Ave.

Areas of the main campus getting a facelift include the Odette School of Business, Dillon Hall, the CAW Student Centre and portions of the Medical Education Building.

Downtown is also seeing some aggressive expansion by the university. The School of Social Work is now headquartered in the former Windsor Star building. The former downtown bus depot will be the home of the film production program. A planned move of the U of W Law School to the historic Paul Martin Building was abandoned, though, and Wildeman told the board Tuesday they are looking at options to improve the current main campus building.

The Armouries will be the new home of the university’s School of Creative Arts,  and classes are expected to be held there at the start of the winter semester. An open house is set for Friday between 2pm and 7pm.

Phase two of the transformation plan features renovations to the university’s athletic compound, Essex Hall and Leddy Library.