University of Toronto breaks ground on the new Centre for Engineering Innovation and Entrepreneurship

On June 24, 2015, University of Toronto Engineering alumni, faculty, students and staff gathered to celebrate the groundbreaking of the Centre for Engineering Innovation & Entrepreneurship (CEIE). CEIE signals a new era for engineering education. The design responds to a shift in pedagogy that asks to bring people together to foster collaboration, encourage active learning and accelerate innovation. It is a pedagogy best supported by dynamic, flexible environments that provide multiple paths to discovery.

Located next to Simcoe Hall and fronting St. George Street, the CEIE occupies the last unbuilt site on the campus’s main thoroughfare.Acknowledging the building’s significant place on campus, the transparent and permeable ground floor creates both physical and visual connections to its surroundings.The double-height entrance hall and exhibition space opens onto a new outdoor court while a two-storey colonnade runs the length of the St. George Street façade providing shelter to students. Finally, multiple new paths through and around the building solidly embed the new CEIE into daily campus life.

Designed by Montgomery Sisam Architects in association with Feilden Clegg Bradley Studios, this new building consolidates spaces for research that span a broad range of subjects to encourage a cross-fertilization of ideas. It provides a new home for the Entrepreneurship Hatchery, the Centre for Global Engineering and the Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering, in addition to a 480-seat interactive lecture hall, state-of-the-art collaborative classrooms, and fabrication facilities. The design also encourages group work outside the traditional classroom environment offering a wide variety of interesting non-programmed spaces throughout the building. As a whole, these dynamic and flexible environments break down artificial barriers between people, foster collaboration, encourage active learning and accelerate innovation.

The new building is being conceived as a 100-year building and has an ambitious energy target of 100 kw/m2 per year. It is expected to open in 2017.