You can’t miss it when you enter campus — the new Commons building shines like a high-tech silver ship perched on the edge of campus. The building is an exciting new addition to the campus environment and there is collective anticipation of its January opening among students, faculty and staff alike.
Since the first “Build the University” campaign, when students took to the streets in October of 1922 to establish the Vancouver campus, UBC students have influenced the university’s built environment for the better. Following in the long tradition of student-led campaigns to expand study and recreation space at UBC, the Commons is a shining example of Tuum Est at work on the Okanagan campus. Extensive student consultation and a successful student-led referendum resulted in the Okanagan student body committing to fund approximately a third of the project up to $10M.
“The Commons aligns with the library’s goal of being a nexus of scholarly engagement for the campus. It will facilitate new thinking by providing space to collaborate, research, learn, and engage with emerging technologies,” explains Chief Librarian Heather Berringer. While Berringer had an ‘ideal’ opening in mind, she realizes that projects of this size require patience and commitment at every level of the university in order to realize the best possible outcome for students, faculty and staff.
The Commons will provide UBC Okanagan’s first 400-seat classroom on campus along with approximately 600 new informal study seats made up of 350 collaborative study spaces, 33 new bookable study rooms, 120 quiet study spaces, a digital design lab, and a data visualization studio. It will also be the new home to UBC Studios Okanagan and the Comma, a welcome new food venue for everyone on campus to enjoy.
The opening date is set for January 2, 2019, when classes will begin being held in the Commons and all members of the community will have access to the state-of-the-art facility.
If you have questions or feedback about the construction schedule or the impact of construction activity, please contact:
UBC Okanagan Library
250 807 8545
Campus Operations & Risk Management
250 807 8624