The Honourable Reza Moridi, Ontario’s Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, has announced that OCAD University will receive a $27-million investment towards the revitalization and expansion of the core of its campus. The university’s Creative City Campus project will add 55,000 square feet of new space, with the renewal of another 94,700 square feet of existing space.
This is the largest investment in the 140-year history of Canada’s leading art, design and digital media university.
“The Ontario government is proud to support the Creative City Campus project, which will provide OCAD U students with vastly expanded and improved learning facilities,” said Minister Moridi. “OCAD U contributes such a unique value to Ontario’s post-secondary education system and produces some of Canada’s top talent in the creative and cultural industries, and I know this modernized and expanded space will help propel OCAD U’s continued success in supporting good jobs in these key sectors.”
Work will begin this spring with an estimated completion during the 2020/2021 academic year. Architects for the 100 McCaul St. expansion have yet to be chosen.
“This project will give our students and faculty the space and technology they need to engage in the studio-based and experiential learning that is essential to the development of artists, designers and digital media practitioners,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor of OCAD University. “This investment is a vote of confidence in the university’s role as a leader in developing the next generation of professionals in the creative sector and it reaffirms OCAD University’s immense social, cultural, economic and city-building impact. We are grateful to the Government of Ontario for this support and recognition.”
The Creative City Campus project includes:
- Expansion and refurbishment of studio spaces and fabrication technology, including in the historic George Reid House
- Construction of collaborative learning spaces in the Sharp Centre for Design
- Modernization and expansion of classrooms and seminar spaces
- Creation of the Grange Park Room and Student Commons
- Creation of an Indigenous Visual Culture Centre
- Revitalization and expansion of the Art and Design Library for the Future
- Development of a Centre for Experiential Learning
The university will seek the input of students, staff, faculty and neighbours to transform McCaul Street into a major cultural centre of the city.
The Ontario Government’s investment will bring OCAD University’s Ignite Imagination fundraising campaign to 85 per cent of its fundraising goal of $60 million. Leslie Gales, President and Chief Investment Officer of the Midland Group of Companies, is Campaign Chair.
“This investment will help students reach their potential by increasing opportunities for experiential learning, improving studios and updating technology,” said Gales. “I’m delighted that the Government of Ontario shares our vision of reinforcing OCAD University’s downtown presence and global impact, and we invite the wider community to support us in achieving our fundraising goal.”
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