The addition and renovations to the existing Labatt Health Sciences Building include a new 90 person classroom on the roof of an existing classroom as well as interior alterations to the School of Health Studies Administration Offices. The new classroom is clad in curtain wall with mullion details to compliment the existing pre-cast fins of the existing building. The corners of the classroom include vision glass to create a daylit learning environment for the students and faculty. The result is a contemporary addition that is integrated with the existing facility. Within the existing building, the administrative spaces were renovated to permit access to the new classroom as well as create a more welcoming front entrance to the School of Health Studies which previously lacked strong presence within the building. Existing stone from the original exterior was integrated into the interiors to add warmth to the space and bench seating was added to provide places of rest and waiting for the students. The success of the project has continued with further renovations to the 3rd floor teaching spaces to renovate the Nursing Skills Labs as well as add a new Collaboration Hub for the School of Health Studies.
The Somerville House Student Space Renovations converted a outdated and underused area of Somerville House into a new dynamic Student Space adjacent to Lucy’s, an existing eatery on campus. The new Student Space is organized around an open Learning Commons which provides a variety of seating arrangements for Students depending on the type of socializing or study they would like to participate in. Adjacent to the Learning Commons are a block of inclusive washrooms as well as three Study Rooms. Either side of the washrooms are sculpted to enable further seating. Existing windows are exposed to view and provide natural light throughout the space. The renovations also improved accessibility through the addition of a new ramp and elevator to provide barrier-free access to the varying floor levels as well as the Great Hall on the floor above, the main Event Space on Campus.
The library renovation completed at King Edward Public School in Kitchener is representative of a project that utilized the Waterloo Region District School Board’s design standards for new elementary school libraries, while honouring the unique heritage attributes of this building. The project consisted of converting the existing library and additional classroom space into an enlarged library space, that accommodates areas for small group/ project work, a larger instructional area, as well as reading areas. The school community was engaged in the process of developing the design for the new space, ensuring that the ideas proposed by students and staff were incorporated into the project. Materials and colours were selected to complement the heritage aspects of the space, and included a new fireplace/ hearth, deep window seats and warm wood tones.
Kettle Creek Public School, formerly known as Port Stanley Public School was originally constructed in 1908. The renovation project was initiated by the need to merge another school community from St. Thomas with the existing Port Stanley Public School population. The exterior building upgrades include the addition of a new canopy and barrier free ramp at the main entrance, refinishing the metal fascia around the perimeter of the building and a one storey addition on the south side of the existing school. The existing site access on the east side of the building was formalized with a new asphalt bus lay-by and parking lot for 50 parking spaces, as well as a new concrete sidewalk network that links the vehicular drop off to each building entrance. The interior of the building underwent a full architectural, mechanical and electrical building upgrade, which included two new classrooms, a new Learning Commons, new floor, ceiling and wall finishes as well as new millwork, mechanical equipment, and electrical fixtures. The major spatial layout changes include converting the existing Library into two new classrooms and the addition of a new Learning Commons with a Maker Space and two Creative Spaces. The building was also updated to meet all barrier free requirements as outlined in the Ontario Building Code including the addition of a Universal Washroom, two new ramps and a chair lift to access the existing elevated stage in the Gym.
The new St. Angela Merici Catholic Elementary School located in northwest Chatham establishes a new standard for elementary education for the St. Clair Catholic District School Board. The facility includes a new Child Care Centre with infant, toddler and pre-school classrooms. The main entrances for both the school and the Child Care Centre facing south to allow for clear visibility from the street. The site was carefully designed to optimize bus and vehicular circulation by providing two separate parking areas, one for parent drop off, visitor and Child Care parking and the other for bus drop off and staff parking. The site also includes a fenced in Child Care exterior play area, a hard surface exterior playground with basketball courts, 3 soccer fields and a landscaped exterior classroom accessible from the Learning Commons. The project brings together three existing north Chatham school communities and provides them with a new state of the art collaborative education facility.
This new Elementary School, Child Care Centre and Family Centre is located to serve the expanding residential neighbourhoods in northwest London. The two-storey building includes Kindergarten and Grades 1-8 classrooms, a General Arts Room, a Gymnasium/Activity Room and a Learning Commons, as well as an Administration area. Common spaces, such as the Main Office, Learning Commons, and Gymnasium/ Activity Room are organized around a double height entrance/atrium space. The Kindergarten Classrooms and a new Child Care Centre are located at the ground level with easy access to the designated exterior play areas. The Family Centre, a provincial/ municipal initiative, incorporates both large and small Multi-Purpose rooms, a Consultation Room, a Resource Room and support spaces. The Family Centre and Child Care Centre utilize a shared entrance to provide a separately controlled access point from the school; however, controlled internal access between all three functions is provided to facilitate collaborative opportunities. Sustainable design initiatives include increased building envelope performance, low flow plumbing fixtures, implementation of daylight/lighting controls, low VOC content building materials, and strong, durable, locally sourced materials.
St. John Catholic Elementary French Immersion School and Child Care Centre is located in a newly developed neighbourhood in the northwest area of London. All common and primary classroom spaces are located on the Ground Floor of the school, including the Gymnasium, the Learning Commons and the Administration Area, which are organized around a double height entry/atrium space. The Learning Commons is designed to open into the Atrium enabling the two spaces to accommodate larger functions. The building has been designed with a particular focus on maintenance and durability, as well as the ability to allow for future expansion with minimal disruption to the building in the future. Sustainability features include increased building envelope performance, low-flow plumbing fixtures, LED lighting, responsive building operating systems, low VOC materials and drought tolerant native vegetation. Energy modelling has indicated that this building should out-perform the M NEBC and ASHRAE 90.1 standards for new buildings by 25%.
The addition and alterations to the Western Student Recreation Centre were necessitated by the need to relocate the varsity practice facility from an outdated Thames Hall facility on campus. In order to do so, a new gymnasium needed to be added on the roof of a ground floor gymnasium and while also renovating one of the ground floor gyms to include Western University varsity branding. While conducting an intial site visit, we were on the existing roof where the new gymnasium addition was to be located, and were immediately struck by the views to the east over the river valley. Since the east elevation was also the most prominent at the street intersection, we proposed adding full-height glass in lieu of the typical solid wall for gymnasiums to enable views out and daylight into the building. This also enabled the east facade to provide more of a landmark on the corner, glowing as a lantern in the evening.
Located within the existing central courtyard, the addition was designed as a free-standing structure separated from the existing building by continuous expansion joints. To achieve this, the addition uses the existing 5’ grid of the original building, ensuring all new walls aligned with the existing pre-cast panels which remain exposed within the addition. The regular grid structure established a set of guidelines for how the program elements should be positioned and was an important part in helping the user navigate the space. The result is a rationalized addition that was completed on a tight timeline and respects the existing structure, while providing a contemporary learning and teaching environment.
Designed in association with Perkins+Will, the Amit Chakma Engineering Building at Western University is the latest addition to the Engineering complex creating much need student social space as well as state-of-the-art research laboratories and classrooms. It is the first LEED Platinum certified building at Western and the third academic building in Canada to achieve the certification. Sited along Western Road, across from the Richard Ivey School of Business, the building further defines the edge of Western’s campus while providing a front entrance for the Engineering Complex. The main atrium serves as a link to the existing Spencer Engineering Building as well as the central gathering space surrounded by private and open study areas. The building is organized with classrooms, laboratories, and offices positioned along the east side of the building connected by a main corridor along the west side. The west corridor hosts daylit student worksurfaces overlooking Western Road to further enhance the student experience.
The alterations to the Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel at Western University were necessitated to provide the land required to build the Amit Chakma Engineering Building. A comprehensive review of the existing spaces and workflow for Wind Tunnel staff resulted in a reconfigured spaces that achieves the following: relocated entrance to the south end of the building off the new shared courtyard space to enhance public visibility of the innovative research facility; a dedicated model display area adjacent to the main entrance and reception which celebrates the history of the work; and converting the existing barrelled-roof corridor into the main staff collaboration space. The result is a renewed work environment which supports the progressive wind engineering and research that takes place within it.