The new South Building renovations. Matthew Filipowich/The Medium
The new South Building renovations. Matthew Filipowich/The Medium

Last year, UTM welcomed new constructions of a new health centre and sciences building. The renovations, however, are far from over. Major changes are now underway in the South Building.

With the campus expansion weve experienced over the past number of years, we have been squeezed for space, said UTM Chief Administrative Officer Paul Donoghue.

The Geography and Sociology departments, the offices of the Vice-President and Principal, Chief Administrative Officer, Dean and Vice-Principal and campus police will be moved to a newly renovated area on the third floor of the South Building, which was formerly the UTM library. The Department of Political Science will also move to the third floor of the South Building in May.

The 3,358 square meter space includes 79 offices (both academic and administrative), work space for graduate students, several conference rooms, designated space for student academic societies, and lounges for staff and students as well as several computer labs. The space also includes skylights and a two-storey atrium garden.

The renovation was led by Peter Ng of Kearns Mancini Architects Inc. The renovations have a green focus, with the use of recycled materials such as bamboo and wood from managed forests as well as low-consumption plumbing fixtures.

Faculty will want to spend research time in the renovated offices, said Professor Gage Averill, the dean and vice-principal at UTM. He added that the renovations will help with the recruitment of students and staff, and will provide the kind of space that facilitates a rich departmental academic life.

Plans are now underway for a student services plaza on the second floor of the South Building. The plaza will provide students with a central location for services, including academic support and recruitment, health and academic counseling and transitional year programs. The student services plaza will link with a newly renovated Meeting Place.

This renovation of the South Building gives us room to accommodate current staff, faculty and students, and provides wonderful options for future expansion, said Donoghue.