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Residences are re-opening with refreshes throughout

While the living spaces stood vacant during the pandemic, Concordia staff mobilized to take on improvement projects together
August 25, 2021
By Kathryn Jezer-Morton

Shot of a student residence bedroom. Lauren Farley: “It was the perfect opportunity to prioritize without any interruption to occupants.”

During the last 18 months of the COVID-19 pandemic closures, Concordia’s Residence Life and Facilities Management teams worked together to make lemonade from lemons.

They took the opportunity to undertake a barrage of improvements throughout the university’s three residences, the Grey Nuns (GN) Residence on the Sir George Williams Campus and Hingston Hall and the Jesuit Residence (JR) on the Loyola Campus.

Department of Athletics and Recreation staff also pitched in their time and effort, making the improvement blitz truly a community endeavour.

“We rolled up our sleeves and took on the buildings,” said Lauren Farley, director of Residence Life. “It was the perfect opportunity to prioritize without any interruption to occupants. We feel really proud of what we were able to dedicate our time to.”

The biggest project undertaken during the closure was in the GN Residence. Its floors were reinforced and new linoleum was installed on three floors. Next, the corridors and over 200 rooms were brightened with a fresh coat of paint, along with new window finishing.

An upgrade in all the residences that students will notice immediately are new laundry machines — which send notifications to students’ phones when their laundry is done.

Some infrastructural improvements won’t be visible to the eye but are no less important. The JR and Hingston Hall’s HB wing got new roofs, the JR was equipped with a new heating and water heating system and showers throughout were upgraded, and the GN Residence elevators were enhanced.

All these improvements will contribute to better efficiency and comfort in the buildings.

When residences closed suddenly in March 2020, some of the Residence Life team transferred their efforts to help with Homeroom, a virtual student-support project pairing upper-year and first-year students for advice and support.

Meanwhile, Residence Life staff organized and packaged the contents of nearly 200 rooms that had belonged to students who weren’t able to take their possessions home with them. They took special care to sort and pack left-behind belongings in a way that was respectful to students.

In addition to the refreshed spaces at the existing residences, there’s a new, albeit temporary, option for incoming Concordia students this fall. The downtown YWCA has partnered with Residence Life to offer two floors of single rooms, taking some pressure off the wait list for residence rooms and allowing Concordia to house more students while maintaining safe distancing among residents.

Having freshened up the buildings, the Residence Life team hopes to engage student residents to be stewards of the Concordia living spaces, and proud to call them home.

Find out more about the new
YWCA residence and Concordia’s on-campus residences.



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