MONTREAL/June 1, 2004—
Dr. Frederick H. Lowy, Rector and Vice-Chancellor of Concordia University, and Sister Aurore Larkin, Superior General of the Sisters of Charity of Montreal (The Grey Nuns), are pleased to announce that the University has acquired the Grey Nuns' Mother House, situated on the land bordered by Guy St., RenÈ LÈvesque Blvd., St. Mathieu and St. Catherine Streets. The details were presented at a press conference held at Concordia this morning.
The acquisition will take place in 4 phases over a 15-year period, with complete transfer of property no later than the year 2022.
ïPhase 1 ñ includes the west wing of the building, which will be transferred by February 2007
ïPhase 2 ñ the central section and the Chapel by February 2011
ïPhase 3 ñ the north part of the Guy St. section by February 2018
ïPhase 4 ñ the south end of the Guy St. section by February 2022
The purchase and the phases it comprises were negotiated by a team led by Mr. Jonathan Wener, Chair of the Real Estate Planning Committee of Concordia's Board of Governors. ìThis acquisition is part of the redevelopment of Guy St., a focal point of Quartier Concordia,î said Mr. Wener.
Concordia has grown at a steady pace to the level where space is at a premium. From an enrolment of 28,229 students just 3 years ago, we are now welcoming 32,500 degree students and 8,000 Continuing Education students.
ìAnyone who has seen our Loyola Campus recently, and the Sir George Williams campus in the heart of Quartier Concordia, is aware of our ambitious construction projects. But despite their size and scope, and keeping in mind the increasing number of students we continue to welcome each year, the new buildings will not fully meet our long-term space needs,î said Dr. Lowy. ìWe have always enjoyed a ëgood neighbour' relationship with the Grey Nuns of Montreal and, understandably, we have had our eye on this magnificent property immediately to the south of the Faubourg Tower that we own. We turned to the sisters for help with our long-range planning.î
ìAnd as the saying goes ëSeek out the Grey Nuns and they will refuse you nothing,' we couldn't say no,î added Sister Larkin, Superior General of the Order founded by St. Marguerite d'Youville. ìIf the motto of St. Ignatius of Loyola, which was inscribed over the entrance to Loyola College, is ìA Man for Othersî, surely Marguerite d'Youville's credo seems fitting as ìA Woman for all Time ñ Mother of Universal Charity.î
According to Sister Larkin, ìConcordia's commitment to accessibility to all ages and backgrounds, forms a natural alliance with the Grey Nuns and our founder St. Marguerite d'Youville, who opened her arms to all, regardless of gender, race, or religious beliefs.î
ìWe are equally committed to preserving the integrity of this nineteenth-century architectural gem designed by Victor Bourgeau,î noted Dr. Lowy, ìhowever Concordia will require the full support of the provincial government and the City of Montreal to breathe new life into its historic halls, the Chapel of which was designated a heritage site in 1974.î
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