The Province of BC has announced that it will be partnering with the University of Victoria to build new state state-of-the-art learning facilities for the engineering and computer science programs.
One of the projects will include a new six-storey addition to the Engineering and Computer Science Building in order to provide new laboratory and teaching spaces. According to the University of Victoria, this expansion will add 500 additional seats that are currently being added for students in computer science and six engineering programs (biomedical, civil, computer, electrical, mechanical and software).
The university highlights that this will lead to approximately 125 more graduates per year by 2023.
In addition to the six-storey expansion, a new High Bay Research and Structures Lab will be erected adjacent to the Engineering and Computer Science Building.
This new lab will feature a 12-metre-high (39-foot-high) area for structural testing and large-scale experiments related to geotechnical, and materials and building science research — something that the university is describing as “essential” to the work of civil engineers.
READ MORE: B.C. changing rules surrounding youth employment
The Province of B.C. says that both new facilities are designed to achieve a net-zero carbon target, combining Passive House design features and mass timber structures. The buildings will also include other sustainability features such as heat pumps and green and solar roofs.
“The buildings will be at the forefront of green building design and will serve as a living lab for experiential learning, research and industry partnerships, and tackle climate change, clean energy and health-care solutions,” reads a statement from the Province.
The University claims that the buildings will offer more students an opportunity to work toward high-impact solutions in fields such as environmental sustainability and healthcare technologies as well.
“I am so excited about this project,” said Anne Kang, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Training. “More seats for students to enrol in programs that lead to rewarding, in-demand science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers, one more top-notch facility for the post-secondary sector and a showcase for the kind of construction projects that incorporate the latest in modern sustainable building design and construction, all while providing family-supporting, good-paying jobs in skilled trades.”
Construction is expected to begin in early 2022, with building occupancy set for 2024.
“Engineers and computer scientists play a critical role as innovators on global challenges such as clean and affordable energy, health care and well-being, and sustainable infrastructure,” said Kevin Hall, president, UVic. “We aim to graduate enterprising people with a social conscience and global perspective, and these new spaces will provide the facilities to nurture highly skilled professionals who will be technological leaders and enrich the local and regional workforce and economy for decades to come.”
The university says that intake for the 500 new seats began in 2018-19 and will be completed by the 2022-23 academic year.
More information on the expansion can be found by clicking here.
Below are some artist renderings of what the facilities will look like.