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The Human Kinetics building and St. Denis Centre complex will be retrofitted thanks to a $4.5 million grant from the Ontario Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development.The Human Kinetics building and St. Denis Centre complex will be retrofitted thanks to a $4.5 million grant from the Ontario Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development.

UWindsor looks to curb greenhouse gas emissions through $4.5 million retrofit

Students and faculty will be able to breathe easier thanks to a multi-million-dollar grant from the Ontario Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD).

The University of Windsor’s board of governors has voted to proceed with the Greenhouse Gas Campus Retrofit Project to be supported by the single-year project grant of $4.5 million.

The improvements will include upgrades to eight air handling units and control systems within the conjoined Human Kinetics building and St. Denis Centre complex, as well as new LED lighting with controls and added roof insulation to the Dennis Fairall Fieldhouse.

"We are very pleased that MAESD has supported this project,” said University of Windsor president Alan Wildeman.

“It will allow us to begin the process of modernizing these important campus facilities and further reducing our environmental footprint."

Danny Castellan, UWindsor manager of Facility Planning, Renovation and Construction, said the existing air handling units no longer perform as intended from both an operational and maintenance perspective.

“The current units are up in the rafters and are a maintenance issue due to the difficulty in accessing the equipment,” Castellan said. “The current equipment is also one of the largest energy users and greenhouse gas emitters within the overall campus.”

The renovations will provide extensive benefits in the form of an improved student experience, decreased maintenance issues, and a more sustainable campus through the reduction of energy and GHG emissions.

The Greenhouse Gas Campus Retrofits Program was launched by the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development to assist postsecondary institutions in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improve the energy efficiency of their campuses.

A total of $85.2 million in grant funding has been made available to eight universities, each selected following a competitive call for proposals.

Dr. Wildeman said the retrofit complements the work being planned for the Lancer Sport and Recreation Centre.

The University of Windsor was recently ranked among the greenest post-secondary institutions in North America by the Princeton Review for its commitment to sustainability.