Sept. 10, 2018

Summer 2018 at UCalgary was filled with construction, construction and more construction

Significant progress made on the MacKimmie Complex and Professional Faculties Building Redevelopment Project

It was hard to miss the giant hole that dominated the fenced-off Swann Mall, the dozens of construction workers, vehicles and machinery on site and the 89-metre crane operating in the heart of the UCalgary campus this summer.

“The project team took advantage of the quieter summertime campus to significantly advance the MacKimmie Complex and Professional Faculties Building Redevelopment Project,” says Boris Dragicevic, associate vice-president, Facilities Development. “Students, faculty and staff coming back this fall will notice main campus looks a lot different than it did at the end of the spring semester as we make progress on one of the largest construction projects in recent campus history.”

In case you missed it, here’s a rundown of all the activity that happened on the project over the summer:

The redevelopment of MacKimmie Tower progressed as crews finished removing the tower’s exterior precast concrete panels from top to bottom. The building was stripped to its bare bones in preparation for the installation of two additional floors and the inner glass façade, which is currently underway. 

After the spring 2018 semester ended, Swann Mall was closed and excavated for deep utility work to replace aging water, storm and sanitary lines and to initiate landscaping work for the revitalization of Swann Mall. With the fall semester now upon us and phase one of the revitalization complete, temporary asphalt pathways and temporary lighting across Swann Mall have been put in place to help the campus community and visitors easily move across campus while maintaining construction safety.

At the same time, the existing link between Murray Fraser Hall and MacKimmie Tower was removed to allow for easier pedestrian circulation between the two buildings starting next summer.

So, what’s next?

Now that MacKimmie Tower has been stripped of its exterior precast concrete panels, crews have begun installing the inner glass skin of the building’s double-skin façade. Work has also begun on the addition of two floors in the removal of the building’s existing roof, and the renewal and construction of the redeveloped MacKimmie Tower will continue until August 2019. Swann Mall’s temporary asphalt pathways will remain open until phase two of the Swann Mall revitalization begins May 1, 2019.

Impacted faculty and staff can find more information as it becomes available on the project website’s faculty and staff page — stay tuned for information regarding a fall 2018 town hall for those impacted and the chance to see a mock-up of a new MacKimmie Tower workstation this winter.   

What is the MacKimmie Complex and Professional Faculties Building Redevelopment Project?

The project is a multi-year, multi-phase project to enhance pedagogical environments, address deferred maintenance, accommodate growth and strengthen the sense of place and community in the heart of the University of Calgary’s main campus. 

The MacKimmie Tower and the new link and block are being redeveloped as a high performance, energy-efficient net-zero carbon building. Once the redeveloped MacKimmie Tower is completed, the Professional Faculties Building will also be redeveloped to allow for increased space to meet faculty growth plans.

The project is one of the first striving for certification with Canada Green Building Council’s (CaGBC) new Zero Carbon Building standard. This opportunity allows the University of Calgary to play a leadership role in sustainable building design in Canada as one of 16 participants and one of only three post-secondary institutions across Canada to take part in the two-year program to help finalize the CaGBC’s standard. 

Be aware and take care: Help make it safe by respecting worksite closures and detours

Nothing is more important than the safety of the campus community and visitors on our campus. Several measures are in place for the safety of our community during construction, including hoarding and fencing around the construction area, pedestrian detours, and traffic control measures. The campus community is reminded to be aware and take care around the construction site by respecting worksite closures and detours.

Visit the project website for regular updates, including current closures and detours, and more information about the project.