Skip to content

Streamlined Office Space Efficiency is a Gain for Student Space

George Brown College (GBC) and GBC Student Association / Casa Loma Campus Student Centre

  • Sector


  • Location

    Toronto, Ontario

  • Client

    George Brown College (GBC) and GBC Student Association

  • Size

    32,000 sf / 3,000 sm

  • Completion


In today’s academic environments, finding the right balance between student-centred space and areas dedicated to campus administration, is a challenge. What distinguishes this project is the efficient reclaiming of administrative space to make way for an active, light-filled student support hub where students feel welcome and want to spend time.

Working with a canvas of 32,000 square feet on George Brown’s Casa Loma campus, ACI transformed what was once a dark maze of space, marred by partitions and uninspiring interiors, into a vibrant student hub.

During the programming phase, office spaces were streamlined and right sized to 66% of the existing footprint. Opportunities were found to create shared meeting and social spaces that supported an enhanced collaborative environment. Our design included a combination of hotelling spaces, private offices, open workstations, food and beverage areas, and convertible event/social spaces in an open plan that also provided privacy when needed. Varying levels of transparency in glazing were used to denote private offices. Cozy nooks in corridors provided students with private, tranquil areas the hustle of their school agenda. The Student Association established a food bank to help support students in need. Care was taken to discreetly locate the food bank’s reception area to ensure students using the service felt safe and not subject to scrutiny.

Aimed at improving the quality of student life, the final design meets student expectations for a supportive environment with its bright, open, flexible, and student-centred spaces.