Lakehead Campus Construction Moves Forward

(June 11, 2009 Orillia)  As Lakehead University celebrates the groundbreaking of its permanent campus in Orillia, today, the company that will be in charge of the construction project is being announced.

EllisDon Corporation, one of Canada's largest builders of non-residential construction, has been awarded the contract for the construction of the academic building. In business for more than 55 years, and with 40 LEED-accredited professionals on staff, EllisDon is a highly reputable company with a commitment to constructing environmentally sustainable buildings.

"We are very pleased to be working with EllisDon Corporation," noted Lakehead president Dr. Fred Gilbert. "With the company having approximately 40 LEED-certified buildings constructed or in progress with the Canada Green Building Council, I am confident they have the expertise to meet the challenges of a building constructed to the stringent environmental standards required by a LEED Platinum designation."

Construction of the $45-million academic building is expected to begin by July 2009. The 80,000-square-foot facility will be able to accommodate up to 1,200 students and is the first of three buildings that will open in September 2010. Construction on the 250-bed residence and a food services building will begin this summer.

Lakehead University Orillia Campus will be the first university campus in North America built to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum standard, meaning it will be a model for long-term environmental sustainability.

"Our students will study in an environment built to the highest levels of environmental accountability," noted Orillia Dean Dr. Kim Fedderson. "Lakehead University is committed to student-centred learning and high-quality research, and is sincere in its desire to help students realize their potential. Our state-of-the-art facility, interdisciplinary studies and commitment to environmental excellence will position our students well to become leaders and independent critical thinkers who are aware of their social and environmental responsibilities to society."

Local municipal governments have also shown their commitment to the development of Lakehead University's permanent campus in Orillia, with the City of Orillia donating $10 million in land, infrastructure, and money, and the County of Simcoe making an initial contribution of $500,000 to the Your Bright Future capital campaign.

"This occasion marks a significant milestone for Lakehead University as well as the City of Orillia and County of Simcoe. All of the local municipalities are on board and see the strategic value of this project," said Paul Weber, chair of the campaign. "It will be Canada's foremost 'green' campus and it will bring attention to Simcoe County as a knowledge centre for green development and environmental research, and in its wake, encourage research partnerships, new business, and new industry."


Media interviews: Dr. Gilbert, President, Lakehead University, is available for interview by calling Eleanor Abaya, Director of Communications at 807-343-8372

For more information and to interview Dr. Kim Fedderson, Dean Orillia Campus, please contact Lee Pigeau, Capital Campaign Manager at, 705-330-4018 or 705-345-7622 (cell)

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a campus in Thunder Bay and in Orillia, Lakehead has over 7,900 students and 2,250 faculty and staff. Lakehead University-Orillia Campus will open up its permanent campus in September 2010. It will be the only campus in North America where every building will be built to the highest environmental (Leed Platinum) standards.

Last updated June 11, 2009

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