Investment to aid in renovation plans

As the University of Lethbridge's new Markin Hall structure continues to take shape, plans are being made to renovate two other areas of the U of L campus. An announced investment of $1.8 million from the Knowledge Infrastructure Program will help further that project.

On behalf of the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Canada's Minister of State for Science and Technology, Rick Casson, Member of Parliament for Lethbridge along with Province of Alberta representative Greg Weadick, MLA for Lethbridge West, announced a joint Knowledge Infrastructure Program investment of $1.8 million in the University of Lethbridge, Monday.

"This investment in the University of Lethbridge will provide a significant short-term economic stimulus to our region, and will create jobs," said Casson, MP for Lethbridge.

The funds will be used to renovate space in Anderson Hall and University Hall, which will be vacated once the Faculties of Health Sciences and Management move into Markin Hall, the $65 million facility currently under construction and scheduled to open in fall, 2010.

The renovated spaces, which include seminar rooms and social sciences research facilities, are expected to be occupied in 2011.

"Our government is investing in innovation to create jobs, to help our economy recover quickly and to improve the quality of life for Canadians. The long term benefit to our community will also be realized when the students and researchers in these new spaces at the University of Lethbridge start taking advantage of a significantly improved work and study environment."

"Partnerships bring success, and success is what our joint investment in the University of Lethbridge is all about," added Weadick, MLA for Lethbridge West.

"The Government of Alberta is already a significant infrastructure investor in the U of L's success, as evidenced by our commitment to fund the Markin Hall construction project and other projects on campus. The changes being made with this funding will allow even more students and researchers to study and work in quality space."

"We are very pleased to have this additional funding to ensure we can meet the demands of our growing campus," U of L President Bill Cade said.

"The creation of space for our students and social sciences researchers is particularly important to ensure a quality work and learning environment. Further, as a generator of business for the construction industry in general, we are happy to play a role, with our federal and provincial partners, in helping the local economy."

This investment is part of the federal government's two-year, $2-billion plan to repair and expand research and educational facilities at Canadian colleges and universities.

The program is helping to provide economic stimulus and promote employment by creating jobs for engineers, architects, tradespeople and technicians. It is also helping to generate the advanced technological infrastructure needed to keep Canada's colleges and universities at the forefront of scientific advancement.