Interior of future science and academic building begins to take shape

Last week, the University of Lethbridge unveiled The Hub as the design choice for the future Science and Academic Building as part of Destination Project.

This week, KPMB/Stantec Architects are back on campus working with the Integrated Design Committee, composed of U of L administrators and faculty members from across science departments, to make key decisions as to how the interior of the building will take shape.

“These decisions will define how we can achieve our primary objectives and create a world-class facility that will engage our faculty, students and the community for generations to come,” says U of L provost Dr. Andy Hakin.

The task at hand this week is to organize the space horizontally and vertically. Classroom, offices and labs spaces, which comprise approximately 80 per cent of the building, have been assigned, and secondary support spaces will now be discussed.

“It’s a lengthy process,” says Hakin. “It builds from one session to the next, and is ongoing, fluid and evolving. We are visioning science for the future.”

A key theme guiding the planning process is trans-disciplinary research and collaboration.

“We are envisioning scientists and researchers working together to share resources and expertise outside of their traditional disciplines to achieve a common scientific goal,” explains Dr. Craig Cooper, Dean of the Faculty of Arts & Science. “Research benefits from different perspectives, different approaches. Students learn from and appreciate the value of work done by other disciplines, creating well-rounded individuals. It benefits students and researchers by allowing them to place their work in a greater context.”

The new Science and Academic Building will allow faculty to more easily incorporate modern teaching methodologies into evolving curriculums. It aims to enhance and support entrepreneurship through the training of students in leading-edge teaching and research laboratories and will provide high quality space to foster industry collaboration and potentially the development of new companies. It will also contain a state-of-the-art, highly sustainable energy centre that will serve the entire U of L campus.

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