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A Design Concept that Fosters Connectivity Amongst Students and to the Surrounding Landscape  

Trent University / Student Centre Design Concept

  • Sector

    Higher Education

  • Location

    Peterborough, Ontario

  • Client

    Trent University

  • Size

    75,000 sf / 7,000 sm

  • Completion


As part of a student-led initiative, Architecture Counsel (ACi) was engaged by Trent University in 2013 to develop the program and concept design for a new 75,000 sq. ft. student centre on its Symons campus in Peterborough, Ontario. Meant to connect to its natural setting on the banks of the Otonabee River, the concept design for the new building is sympathetic to the existing buildings by celebrated architect, Ron Thom, and provides a welcoming place where students can interact, collaborate, learn, and participate in a wide range of campus activities.

Our team worked with Educational Consulting Services (ECS) to engage students in the conversation of what was missing on campus and what they wanted from their student space. In-depth stakeholder consultations helped us assess the services and elements that would create a successful student-centric building.

The final concept design features extensive use of glass and a dynamic, flexible floor plan organized to showcase views of the Otonabee River and facilitate a variety of activities within a series of multipurpose spaces.

The new building is home to the Trent Central Student Association. The association operates a series of student-centred activities within the building including, student-sponsored activities and clubs, informal and formal study and social spaces, student wellness services, classrooms, event areas, and food and retail services.