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Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex Fast Facts

BACKGROUNDER - updated Sept 2014

Richardson College for the Environment & Science Complex

Key Building Features

  • A model of green building technology, constructed to a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Standard, is one of the most energy efficient educational laboratory buildings in North America. It uses approximately half the energy of a conventional building. 

  • 150,000 square feet, adding 15 per cent to the built facilities of the UWinnipeg campus. 

  • Total project cost is $66.58 million, which includes land and site costs, constructions costs, LEED Commissioning, furniture, equipment and project contingencies. 

  • Designed by Number 10 Architects of Winnipeg, one of Canada’s leading green architectural firms, with construction by Manitoba’s Manshield Construction LP. 

  • Consists of more than 30 research and teaching labs, including a vivarium, and a 1,127 square foot rooftop greenhouse. 

  • The signature four-storey Power Corporation of Canada Atrium incorporates nine living fig trees and a 3,000 square foot wall of reclaimed hard maple from the Winnipeg Roller Rink previously on the site.
  • Extensive use of natural daylight with energy-efficient double glazed, argon-filled windows and energy-efficient lighting. 

  • Computer programmed three mode air flow system ventilates labs as required, controllable by occupants, resulting in significant energy saving. It captures approximately 80% of energy from the laboratory exhaust. 

  • A heat recovery wheel, highly innovative and unique to Canada, cleans and filters lab air; warm air is re-circulated, resulting in significant energy savings. 

  • Low flow water fixtures on taps and shower heads, dual flush toilets and waterless urinals, reduces water consumption. 

  • In partnership with the Spence Neighbourhood Association, the Winnipeg Real Estate Board and Westminster Housing, four homes were relocated from the site to be used as in-fill housing for families in West Broadway and Spence neighbourhoods. 

  • The Richardson Green Corridor, linking the Furby-Langside campus to UWinnipeg’s main campus, is an eco-friendly project that improves accessibility, creates new community green space, and in conjunction with the City of Winnipeg, upgrades an aging sewer system that benefits neighbourhood residents as well as our campus. 
Key Building Uses and Community Benefits
  • Approximately 2,000 students use the building daily. Houses the University's departments of Biology, Chemistry and Environmental Studies and Sciences. 

  • The third floor of the Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex houses the Canada Research Chair in Science Education in Cultural Contexts and the Canada Research Chair in Inner City Issues and Community Learning and Engagement; the Institute of Urban Studies; staff and faculty affiliated with the Master’s in Development Practice program; the Indigenous Studies program; the CISCO Centre for Collaborative Technologies which includes a world-class TelePresence system and the endowed Cisco Chair for Collaborative Technology; and the University Sustainability Office. The laboratory of the Canada Research Chair in Environmental Toxicology is house ed the building as is the Canada Research Chair in Quantum Materials Discovery. 

  • Key areas of research specialty are: the global north, climate change, water stewardship, inner-city issues and research and public policy initiatives associated with sustainability. 

  • UWinnipeg's Diversity Foods operates a main floor, licensed restaurant called Elements serving students (including those on meal plans at McFeetors Hall residence) faculty, staff and the general public. It has an outdoor seasonal patio.

Teaching and research labs include:

  • Ecology and Evolution of Animal Behaviour
  • Aquatic Physiology and the Environment
  • Trace-Metal Contaminants
  • Water Research
  • Vector Ecology and Control Training and Research
  • Natural Products Antibiotic Discovery
  • Comparative Genomics and Systems
  • Plant Evolutionary Ecology
  • Mammalian Ecology and Conservation
  • Sustainable Inland Fisheries
  • Organic Compound Discovery/Synthesis
  • Insect Biochemistry and Cellular Metabolism
  • Bio-Analytical Laboratory
  • Animal Physiology
  • Water Quality and Health
  • Freshwater Ecology
  • First Year Biology (2 labs)
  • Cell Biology
  • Plant Biology and Parasitology
  • General Chemistry
  • Genetics
  • Microbiology
  • Anatomy and Physiology, Histology, Chordate Zoology
  • Ecology, Invertebrate Biol and Entomology
  • Quantitative Analytical Methods
  • Environmental Analysis
  • Materials Properties
  • Inorganic Synthesis/Reactivity
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • The George Tomlinson Laboratory for Advanced Biochemistry

Key Milestones

  • September 12, 2006 – Hartley Richardson, President & Chief Executive Officer, James Richardson & Sons Limited, announced lead gift totalling $3.5 million from the Richardson Firm, Family and Foundation to establish The Richardson College for the Environment and a green corridor at The University of Winnipeg. 

  • November 16, 2006 – Manitoba Premier Gary Doer announced a $25-million capital investment in the University to aid in construction of the Science Complex. 

  • July 2007 – The University acquired the land for the new Furby-Langside Campus. 

  • October 20, 2008 – Board of Regents approved the first phase of the construction of the Richardson College for the Environment with the awarding of the tender for excavation and shoring contract. 

  • November 13, 2008 – Inaugural groundbreaking for Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex. 

  • May 20, 2009 – The Government of Canada announces an historic $18,042,000 million infrastructure grant to support the project. 

  • June 13, 2011 – Construction of the Richardson Green Corridor, linking the Furby-Langside campus to UWinnipeg’s main campus, gets underway. Sodding and paved pathway to be completed by September 2011. 

  • June 27, 2011 – Grand Opening of the Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex.

  • November 2012 - The International Centre for Infectious Diseases (ICID) and its 30 employees moved into their new suite of offices on the main floor of the Richardson College for the Environment and Science Complex.