Much of Queen’s University’s administration is now officially housed at 355 King Street West, with renovations and most relocations to the site now complete. The consolidation of administrative units in the new building will allow the university to free up and renovate more space in the central campus for academic and research-focused purposes.

The university renovated and is occupying three wings of the former St. Mary’s of the Lake Hospital building (areas previously known as the South, East and Sister’s wings). These wings are now home to Financial Services, Investment Services, Internal Audit, Campus Security and Emergency Services, Environmental Health and Safety, Insurance and Risk Management, Strategic Procurement Services, Postal Services, Facilities, and the Office of the Vice-Principal Research.

The university bought the site from Providence Care in 2017, and construction started in 2021. Environmental sustainability was a key consideration in the work that was done. The project adapted the existing building for reuse, upgrading mechanical and electrical systems, and includes the first geo-exchange well on the main campus. The interior has a bright, modern, clean ambiance, with much of the interior lighting motion-sensitive to avoid unnecessary power usage. The parking lot lighting is also new, and is ‘dark sky’ compliant, using new technology and directional lighting that cuts down on light pollution. The project received a $100,000 accessible design grant, which is to date the largest grant of its kind received by Queen’s. The grant helped fund roughly a third of the cost of the accessibility ramp that runs from King Street to the south entrance of the building.

The university also leased the former Gibson Wing to Providence Care, which opened a transitional care center in 2021, with 64 transitional care beds. The center is also a teaching site for the Queen’s Health Sciences and for St. Lawrence College programs. A portion of the main floor is also being used by Kingston Health Sciences Center (KHSC) for a 70-bed, 24,500 square-foot alternate health facility.

Contractors are addressing minor deficiencies and the railing on the King Street wheelchair ramp will be installed shortly – but the project is now complete effectively.

By Gundah

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