Volume 91, Issue 69
Friday, January 30, 1998
Administration has designs on new rez.
By Sara Marett
Western's administration jumped over another hurdle in the race to build the new University Drive residence yesterday as the Board of Governors overwhelmingly passed the five-storey building design, regardless of pleas from hundreds of neighbours to vote against it.
Board member Terry O'Neil presented a petition to the Board with over 225 names many of them Western alumni, urging Board members to reconsider the site of the building. As approximately 20 Broughdale area residents looked on, O'Neil read aloud their written message to the Board. "It is important you realize we are not going to give up and go away quietly."
After several recent meetings between the area residents and Western's administration, VP-administration Peter Mercer said the residents have claimed the university has been acting in bad faith. "Right now I renew my request to the residents to accept our good faith and continue to work with us through the phases of construction on the building," he said.
But what the residents' plan to continue to do is fight. The plan for the building will go to City Hall for a site plan review in early February and the residents plan to attend and ask some serious questions. "The building doesn't suit the site they are trying to build much too big a building on a narrow piece of land," said Broughdale Community Association president Susan Bentley.
"We believe we've created a welcoming gateway to the university in scale with the other buildings on the opposite side of the street which will be an added attraction to the university," said architect Gord Robinson.
The 400-bed residence design of two five-storey wings with a two-storey entrance, will also house a welcome centre for the university and offices for the housing and food services administration. The building should be completed by 1999.
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