Transformation of Old Main building unveiled
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KAMLOOPS, BC, May 17 /CNW/ - Today, at Kamloops Art Gallery, Thompson
Rivers University unveiled the plans for an exciting new revitalization
of Old Main which will include 40,000 square feet of new learning space
and will house Canada's newest Faculty of Law. The design was unveiled
in front of its inspiration Mount Paul by Group of Seven painter, A. Y. Jackson. This revitalization will make
Old Main one of the most innovative buildings in the BC Interior.
This new space is an important expression of Thompson Rivers
University's vision for the future, and is part of a campus-wide
program of expansion and bold, new buildings. Currently offering
undergraduate and graduate studies, the expanded facilities are
required for the new Faculty of Law. The design and construction
techniques are a bold step in the creation of the newest Faculty of Law
in the country.
The Faculty of Law at Thompson Rivers University, which will be housed
in the new floor, is the first new Faculty of Law in Canada in 30
years. "The founding of a new law school, especially the first law
school outside of a major urban centre, is important not only for the
BC Interior, and the province, but for Canadians across the country,"
said Founding Dean, Chris Axworthy, Q.C.
The firms of Diamond and Schmitt Architects and Stantec won the design
bid for their vision to revitalize the Old Main building. The new
space will contain space for the Faculty of Law, and will contain
common space for use by all TRU students.
The design firms looked to the splendor of Mt. Peter and Paul to create
an expansive design that undulates and curves, and were inspired by Mount Paul, by A. Y. Jackson. The result is a spectacular undulating roofline that
mirrors the Kamloops horizon.
"I think the concept that has been developed is certainly imaginative
and is in harmony with the location," said TRU President and
Vice-Chancellor Dr. Alan Shaver. "It will serve as a striking home for
Canada's newest law school."
The building was designed to meet TRU's exacting standards.
"Our design for the new Law School is shaped by the topography of Mount
Peter and Mount Paul, sacred ground for First Nations seen from the
site. The design is grounded in the sustainable re-use of pine beetle
kill wood harvested locally," said Donald Schmitt, a principal with
Diamond and Schmitt Architects. "State of the art prefabricated wall
and roof elements, made on site enclose tall flowing and inspirational
In order to minimize impact to the campus and student body, construction
of many of the components will take place offsite during the winter of
2011-2012. Onsite construction will commence April 2012 with the
completion of the shell targeted for June 2012. The firms will submit
completed, detailed working drawings for the third and fourth floor by
The total estimated cost for the revitalization is $20 million. The
construction of the shell, Phase 1, is funded for approximately $10
million. Phase 2, the completion of the interior will cost
approximately $10 million and will be paid for through public-private
fundraising. Tender packages for Phase 1 construction will go out by
Removal and replacement of the exterior windows in blocks A and B of Old
Main will begin June 15 of this year. Seismic upgrades will occur this
summer and to minimize disruption, most of the work will be done during
the afternoons, evenings and weekends.
Cliff Neufeld, TRU Vice President Administration and Finance, said the
revitalization is long overdue.
"We think this will be a remarkable transformation for the building and
you will not recognize it as the same building it is now," Neufeld
Artists' renderings are available at: www.tru.ca
Thompson Rivers University
Located in Kamloops, British Columbia, Thompson Rivers University (TRU)
is BC's newest university. Students from across the country and around
the world come to study with leading professors in one of Canada's most
beautiful university settings.
TRU is an innovative comprehensive university. Originally founded as
Cariboo College in 1970, the university became a degree-granting
institution in 1995, and was named Thompson Rivers University in 2005.
TRU has evolved into a leading institution that combines the rigor of
top-tier academic programs and with the value of applied studies.
TRU has a vibrant community with over 13,000 students on campus and an
additional 8,000 studying by distance through online learning tools.
Students from over 30 countries can complete undergraduate and graduate
degrees in addition to diplomas, trades training, certificates,
continuing studies and ESL.
TRU is proud to serve Canada's aboriginal community through unique
learning programs that enable members of our First Nations community to
remain close to their communities. TRU is home to a host of specialized
Aboriginal educational programs and learning centres.
The Faculty of Law at TRU is the newest law school in Canada. It stands
as yet another example of TRU's commitment to bring high quality,
assessable, and innovative educational options to Canadians and to the
The President of TRU is Dr. Alan Shaver. The Chancellor is Wally Oppal,
Thompson Rivers University Faculty of Law
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) Faculty of Law is the newest law school
in Canada. Canadian law schools have an excellent track record and
global reputation for the lawyers our system produces. TRU Law will fit
into that mosaic of law schools. Our faculty of law will fill a unique
role: a smaller-scale law school where students can interact with
faculty, develop a strong understanding of legal ethics, learn about
the increasingly important field of First Nations and Energy law, and
graduate knowing that their legal education has prepared them for the
practice of law. These are important and growing areas of practice, and
our students will have an important backing in these specialities.
The founding Dean of TRU Law is Chris Axworthy, Q.C., former federal MP
and Saskatchewan MLA, and provincial cabinet minister. He has taught
law at the University of New Brunswick, Dalhousie Law School (now
Schulich School of Law), University of Saskatchewan, and served as Dean
of Robson Hall, the Faculty of Law at University of Manitoba.
SOURCE Thompson Rivers University
For further information:
Thompson Rivers University
Chris Axworthy, Q.C.
Founding Dean, Faculty of Law
TRU Vice President Administration and Finance
Diamond and Schmitt
Manager, Public Relations