Feasibility Study Complete, UWindsor will purchase Windsor Star property

Board of Governors votes to move Social Work and the Centre for Executive and Professional Development to historical downtown location

WINDSOR, ON, Nov. 23, 2011 /CNW/ - The University of Windsor has confirmed it will purchase the Windsor Star property at the corner of Pitt and Ferry Streets as the new home of its popular School of Social Work, and the Centre for Executive and Professional Development (CEPE).

A feasibility study was completed by CS&P Architects to reimagine the property for the University of Windsor, and as a result, the Board of Governors voted in favour of the purchase on November 22, 2011. The announcement was made today by Dr. Alan Wildeman, President and Vice-Chancellor, during his keynote address at the annual general meeting of the Windsor-Essex Regional Chamber of Commerce.

"The purchase of the Windsor Star property is the first step in the University of Windsor's plan to transform the landscape of our campus to more firmly anchor our commitment to being a student-centred university. This acquisition is part of the broader vision to support the priorities identified in our strategic plan with capital projects. Our campus will change dramatically as opportunities are identified and new construction replaces out-dated facilities that no longer align with the vision for our institution," said Wildeman.

Some of the other changes identified in the master plan include the need for a centralized welcome centre, a consolidation of student services into one building, a new home for the bookstore, reconstructing the south wing of Essex Hall and finalizing plans for an Innovation Centre combined with a new parking structure at the corner of Wyandotte and California.

The potential purchase of the Windsor Star property was first announced on May 30, 2011 with the news that the university would relocate its Music and Visual Arts programs, and Film Production to the Armouries building in downtown Windsor thanks to the City of Windsor's capital donation in addition to $10 million in funding, and the provincial government's contribution of $15 million.

The School of Social Work is comprised of approximately 830 students, faculty and staff who currently work with several agencies downtown. Dr. Wildeman explained why this program will need to be relocated as part of the master plan, "Moving the social work program downtown presents an opportunity to significantly broaden the bandwidth between important academic programming and the needs of our community." He also noted the central location of the Windsor Star building between St. Clair College's Centre for the Arts and its Mediaplex building as an opportunity to create synergies between the two institutions.

The CEPE is already located downtown at 245 Ouellette, servicing individuals and organizations with degree programs and professional development workshops. Consolidating this centre with the School of Social Work will allow for a greater number of shared services and facilities to enhance the students' experience.

Architectural designs for the new Social Work and CEPE facility, and the Armouries and will be released in the months to come.

Founded in 1963, the University of Windsor has close to 16,000 full-time and part-time students. The University of Windsor's mission is to enable people to make a better world through education, scholarship, research and engagement.

SOURCE University of Windsor

For further information:

Lori Lewis
Manager, News Services
Public Affairs and Communications
519-253-3000 ext. 3241
llewis@uwindsor.ca


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