Laurentian University held an Aboriginal welcoming ceremony to mark the start of construction of the new teacher's college building Monday.
LU first admitted students in the English-language concurrent Bachelor of Education program in September 2003. Currently, 450 students are enrolled in the four to five-year program, which is taken concurrently with an undergraduate degree.
"With more than 150 students admitted to the program every year, and given the overall growth in enrolment at the university over the past few years, it was quite apparent that construction of a new building was essential," said LU president Dr. Judith Woodsworth in a news release.
The new 70,000 square foot, three-storey building will be constructed across from the Alphonse Raymond building on Voyageur Rd., adjacent to the Health Sciences Education Resource Centre.
The new facility will include 10 teaching classrooms and laboratories, two computer teaching labs, a pedagogical resource centre, a 200-seat tiered floor smart classroom, an 80-seat smart classroom, as well as faculty and staff offices.
The new building will also include specialty teaching, practice and rehearsal rooms, as well as faculty offices, for Laurentian's music program.
Consultations continue to finalize the project scope and details, following which final designs will be completed. Plans also call for the new building to incorporate sustainable design elements and be environmentally friendly, aiming for the least amount of impact to the land upon which the building will be situated.
The total project cost will be in the $18 to $20 million range.