The University of Windsor campus received national applause recently when Best Choice Schools (BCS) ranked it among the most beautiful in Canada.
UWindsor won high marks for aesthetics and useable student space, as well environmental friendliness, an attractive mix of historic and modern architecture, as well as temperate climate.
The University was recognized for its location on an international border, giving students access to both the big-city advantages of Detroit as well as Windsor’s safe, walkable neighbourhoods.
Campus landscaping was also highlighted as home to several species of trees found in the Carolinian forest — a feature most often found in the warmer climes of the southern United States.
“For the thousands of students who take on the weighty task of choosing a university, the decision often comes down to more than just the school’s reputation and cost, and rightly so. If it’s true that man is inspired by beauty, then it makes perfect sense to attend a university where you can be literally surrounded by it,” BCS said.
In 2013 the University marked its 50th anniversary with the announcement of a Campus Master Plan — establishing a vision for the next 50 years, with an attractive design intended to enrich both the student and the community experience.
Extensive consultation among architects, students, administration, faculty, staff and the Board of Governors imagined new pedestrian pathways enhanced with lighting, landscaping, and signage leading to various hubs of activity for recreation, cultural displays, and gathering spaces with seating. The plan was intended to heighten the sense of arrival on campus with impressive gateway signage, welcoming points of interest and sought-after destinations reached through easily accessible entry points to help navigate the campus.
Over the past five years completed projects have included:
- David A. Wilson Commons — a crossroads and gathering place at the heart of the main campus. The commons replaced a former parking lot on Sunset Avenue and features a basketball court, performance stage, meeting and gathering spots, and new landscaping and lighting;
- The area east of the Odette Building — an extension of the David A. Wilson Commons which created a new link from the centre of campus to the Ed Lumley Centre for Engineering Innovation and includes seating areas at the corner of Wyandotte and California;
- Alistair MacLeod Walk — formerly a portion of Patricia Road — honouring one of UWindsor’s most acclaimed scholars and authors in recognition of both his personal and academic contributions;
- Turtle Island Walk — recognizing the First Nations history of the land that the University of Windsor sits on with a series of plaques featuring the Seven Teachings of the Ancestors — Wisdom, Love, Respect, Bravery, Honesty, Humility, and Truth — as well as the artwork of First Nations artist Teresa Altiman.
For more information on the UWindsor Campus Transformation Plan, visit: http://www.uwindsor.ca/campustransformation/318/campus-master-plan.