SCUP/AIA-CAE Excellence in Architecture for a New Building,
Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology for Algonquin Centre for Construction Excellence with Diamond Schmitt Architects and Edward J. Cuhaci and Associates Architects Inc., Architects in Joint Venture and EllisDon Corporation
|Photo by Tom Arban|
In 2007, Algonquin College developed a vision to create an integrated learning and applied research environment to better address the academic mission and the growing needs of the construction industry for skilled trades and occupations workers. Home to over 2,500 full-time and 5,000 part-time students, the center uses an integrated learning approach to deliver 24 programs of study.
The center promotes the construction industry as a first choice career destination, is a showcase for sustainable construction practices and superior craftsmanship, and serves as a one-of-a-kind living laboratory that demonstrates what is possible through innovative design, construction, maintenance and operation.
The curriculum and architecture bring together industry, faculty and students, encouraging a dynamic exchange of ideas that will benefit Canada's construction industry for decades.
Jurors commented “ . . . pretty irresistible. . . . developed a vision for creating an integrated learning and applied research environment to better address their academic mission . . . enormous building . . . it has consistency and variety that is admirable . . .”
To transform the "frayed" landscape of the suburban, industrial site, the building was conceived as an undulating landscape, linking park, arrival plaza, terraces, stops, classrooms and offices in one continuous form.
The building is a gateway to the campus and a crossroads where students, faculty and the public come together. The design concept blends building and landscape, its varied and dramatic interior spaces, and the playful use of color to animate its facades.
The great hall, with two dramatic seating pods floating overhead, welcomes visitors into the building and includes formal and informal instructional spaces.
“The design team created an edifice that exceeded our expectations and will stand the test of time for generations,” says Claude Brulé, dean, faculty of technology and trades. “It is a showcase for how a professional design build team’s attention to their client’s needs can deliver innovation, aesthetics, functionality and value. Their creativity transformed our environment and how we live in it,” he adds.
Project Team: Algonquin College of Applied Arts and Technology with Diamond Schmitt Architects and Edward J. Cuhaci and Associates Architects Inc., Architects in Joint Venture and EllisDon Corporation; also Halsall Associates; Goodkey Weedmark Consulting Engineers; Alston Associates, Inc.; Delcan Corporation; Gino J. Aiello Landscape Architect; LMDG Building Code Consultants Ltd.; Nova Commissioning Services Ltd.; Aerocoustics Engineering Ltd.; Hendrix Restaurant Equipment