Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some frequently asked questions about the Lancer Centre. If your questions aren't answered here, you can email us.

Who is building the Lancer Centre?  

EllisDon/Fortis Group is the general contractor for the Lancer Centre project. EllisDon is a world-leading construction and building services company based out of Mississauga, Ontario and Fortis Group is a general contractor based out of Windsor, Ontario. The two companies are also working together on the Ron W. Ianni Faculty of Law Building transformation (TWL).   

CS&P Architects designed the Lancer Centre and have worked with the University of Windsor on our Downtown Campus (Armouries, Alan Wildeman Centre for Creative Arts, and Windsor Hall which houses our School of Social Work). 

The Project Manager for the Lancer Centre is Colliers Project Leaders, with Jayne Grills as the lead. 

Can I still access the St. Denis Centre during the construction of the Lancer Centre?  

The St. Denis Centre will remain open during the construction of the Lancer Centre.    

Will the Lancer Centre be built on current green space?  

The site of the Lancer Centre is immediately south of and connected to the existing St. Denis Centre. The space that it occupies was formerly green space and was a lit field. This field has been relocated west of the Lancer Centre and east of the Alumni Field.   

How long will the Lancer Centre take to complete?  

Construction of the Lancer Centre officially began in November 2019 and has an estimated completion date of May 2022.  The building will then be prepared for its opening (opening date TBD). 

Whose idea was this building? 

The concept of this building has been discussed between the University and students for more than 20 years. In 2013, the vision for the Lancer Centre (then referred to as the “Lancer Sports and Recreation Centre (LSRC)”) began.  A Steering Committee was struck with representatives from the Student Leaders, Administration and ARS.  The building architects (CS&P) were engaged in a two-phase process. The first phase saw CS&P lead a consultation process with all stakeholders to create a conceptual design to take to the University and students that would become the basis of the student referendums.  By Winter 2017, all student organizations succeeded in their respective referendums.  After the referendums were passed, CS&P led the second phase of the project moving from conceptual design to architectural design, construction documents and to the awarding of a contract for the construction of the Lancer Centre. 

Have students voted on student spaces in the past?  

Yes, students supported the current mandatory Sport and Recreation Capital fee by referendum in 2004. This 25-year agreement expires in 2029. This fee supported the capital construction cost of the Forge fitness facility (~$1.3 million). The same fund also provided a $1-million contribution toward the capital construction cost of Alumni Stadium. The capital fee referendum of 2004 has continued to generate funds that have been used to support other smaller capital improvements to the St. Denis Centre. The Capital Fee Board meets regularly to consider proposals to support new capital improvements from this fund. This Board is comprised of representatives from the University, UWSA, OPUS and GSS. Students hold the majority share of voting positions on this Board.

What will be part of the new Lancer Centre?  

When completed the new Lancer Centre will feature:  

  • Lancer Commons  

  • Triple gymnasium with seating for 2,000 spectators and Alumni VIP Lounge 

  • 8-lane, 25m pool  

  • Fitness Centre   

  • 3 new multi-purpose rooms  

  • 2 Renovated Natural Grass Soccer Fields, one lighted 

  • Renovated Dennis Fairall Fieldhouse   

What will happen to existing amenities in the St. Denis Centre?  

All existing St. Denis Centre amenities will remain except for the existing pool. The existing pool is no longer in operation. 

Who is paying for the Lancer Centre?

The Lancer Centre will cost $73 million to build. The University is proud to partner with the University of Windsor Student Alliance (UWSA), the Graduate Student Society (GSS) and the Organization of Part-time University Students (OPUS) who have embraced this project with a $54.4 million contribution.  

The generosity from students demonstrates a commitment to the University of Windsor along with the Lancer and Windsor Proud brands. This is the largest student contribution to any university in Canada. Their belief in this project along with their desire to ensure an inclusive environment that encourages excellence in all areas of health, wellness and human potential will be their legacy to the University and the Windsor-Essex community for generations to come. 


The full cost of the Lancer Project will be funded by $54.4 million pledged directly by all University of Windsor students through the referendums.  The University’s contribution to the project is $18.6 million.  The University’s contribution will be achieved through fund raising, operating support of debt cost, and other revenue.  The University has committed to funding 100% of the Lancer Centre’s facility operating costs. 

Has the project cost changed since the referendum?

No, the project cost remains at $73 million. The project is on budget and on time.   

When will the fee start?

Based on the agreement with the students, the fee will commence in the academic year in which the Lancer Centre becomes operational. Based on timing of construction, it is anticipated that the fee will commence in Fall 2022.

Can I opt out of the fee?

No. The fee is a mandatory fee as outlined in the referendum. There is no opt out language in the referendum. 

When was the referendum held?  

Undergraduate students voted in February 2017 with more than 64 per cent of vote in favour of the referendum. The University of Windsor’s Graduate Student Society and Organization of Part-time University Students voted in favour of the proposal in November 2016. 

What was the referendum? 

The following referendum question was asked by all students of UWSA, GSS, and OPUS. 

“Be it resolved that an annual capital fee of $125.00 per student ($62.50 per term for a maximum of two terms per academic year) be levied on all members of the University of Windsor Student Alliance (UWSA) to support the construction of a new Lancers Centre.  

Be it further resolved that this fee shall be assessed commencing Fall 2019 or in the academic year that the building becomes operational, whichever comes later;  

Be it further resolved that the fee shall increase by an annual increment of 5% per year for the first seven (7) years only;  

Be it further resolved that in 2029, when the existing Sports & Recreation capital fee expires, the Lancer Centre capital fee shall increase by the amount of that fee at that time;  

Be it further resolved that the term of this fee shall be 30 years;  

Be it further resolved that all fees generated shall be used exclusively to support the Lancer Centre capital project.“ 

What programs will be offered at the Lancer Centre Pool because of this agreement?   

The agreement includes 93% of the programming formerly run at the Adie Knox Herman (AKH) pool. This includes Shallow Water Aqua Fitness, Shallow Water Walking, Deep Water Aqua Fitness, Fit Lanes, Recreational Swimming, Male Only Swim Lessons, Female Only Swim Lessons and WEST Swim Team Rental. Please see the appended program map for a visual representation of the programs included in the agreement. 

Will members of the UWindsor community be able to access the programs formerly offered at AKH pool?  

Yes. Members of the UWindsor community who had access to the St. Denis Centre pool will have access to pool programs at the Lancer Centre, including those programs formerly offered at AKH. Non-instructional programs will continue to be offered without additional fees to members of the UWindsor community who qualify. Instructional program fees will remain the same for members of the UWindsor community as for other users. 

What is the impact of moving AKH pool programming to the Lancer Centre pool have on overall pool capacity?   

We anticipate the pool being open for 112 hours per week. The agreement with the City of Windsor means a commitment of roughly 50 per cent of the total programmable lanes and time in the Lancer Centre pool.  This means that roughly 50 per cent of the inventory of time remains unprogrammed currently. (Please see the appended pool program hourly breakdown for a visual representation of this.)

How does pool utilization/programming in the proposed program map compare to what was offered previously in the St. Denis Centre pool?   

The previous St. Denis Centre Pool was a 6 lane 25m tank and offered 37 total hours of aquatics programming to students per week. The Lancer Centre pool has an 8 lane 25m tank and will offer an increase in 75 hours total hours of aquatics programming to students each week.

What are the key elements of the Community Use Agreement?  

The key elements of this agreement are:   

  • The agreement is a ten (10) year agreement  

  • The agreement is renewable for ten (10) years, with the consent of both City of Windsor and UWindsor  

  • The City of Windsor will make a one-time $3-million capital contribution to the University of Windsor  

  • The City of Windsor will make a $200,000 operational fund contribution to the University of Windsor during each year of the agreement  

  • The annual operational fund contribution is to ensure that UWindsor maintains the 93% of AKH programming that will be offered at the Lancer Centre pool, and to ensure that the City Patrons who use the facilities will not incur parking fees, and to assist with the operational expenses of the Lancer Centre pool.  

  • The City of Windsor and the University of Windsor agree to establish a Community Use Advisory board with representatives from both parties to time advise and make recommendations to the University on the fulfillment of the terms, spirit and intent of this Agreement. 

What will be the temperature of the water at the Lancer Centre pool?   

The pool water temperature will be maintained at a temperature of 28.8 to 29.4 degrees C (84 – 85 degrees F) with the air temperature slightly higher and at a comfortable relative humidity.  This is the same water temperature condition that existed in the St. Denis Centre pool. 

The new Lancer Centre will adjoin to the south of the current St. Denis Centre. A new main entrance will serve as the primary entry point to the Lancer Centre to better serve our visitors and to enhance the customer experience. The new building will be highly integrated into the existing complex to provide an extraordinary athletic centre for our students, staff, faculty, and community. The day-to-day operation will be merged to ensure maximum functionality and efficiencies. 

Who will have management responsibility of the Lancer Centre?  

The University will manage and operate the Lancer Centre. 

Will there be study space in the building?  

The Lancer Commons (central hub adjacent to the main entrance) will have seating to allow students to gather in groups to socialize or study.  A new Starbucks food venue which is part of the Lancer Commons will provide drinks and food.  This space will have WIFI and electrical plug ins for charging devices. In concept it will be like the public area of the CAW Student Centre.  There is no designated quiet study space in the building.

What are going to be the operating hours of the building?  

Proposed hours are 6 a.m. to 10 p.m.  Final details on how the Lancer Centre will operate are part of an extensive process currently underway in preparation for opening day. 

Are the pool and changerooms gender neutral?   

The Lancer Centre pool will have three change rooms, including universal, men’s and women’s change rooms.