Building design supports an unprecedented learning experience and model of primary companion animal healthcare
The building design of the companion animal healthcare centre reflects the unique program while re-interpreting the campus vernacular in a modern way. The three main programmatic elements - teaching spaces, animal hospital and endowed care each have their distinct areas yet are connected by a logical directional flow, supported by visual connectivity with separate entrances that allow their individual programs to flow seamlessly throughout. Completing the western edge of the OVC quadrant, the building is sited to maintain the existing mature treescape while the small building footprint allows for sufficient landscaping along with dog outwalks providing physical access to the outdoors.
The building reflects the college’s position as a leader in veterinary teaching and sets a new international standard for companion animal education and healthcare by integrating experiential learning into a clinic setting. Students will have the ability to participate in routine healthcare while still having access to sophisticated diagnostic and treatment procedures. The design supports the innovative curriculum by the logical progression of spaces with a high degree of transparency to facilitate the learning / teaching experience. Most areas are filled with light from the extensive glazing contributing positively to the spatial experience for people and animals alike.
This is the first building at the University of Guelph to target LEED® Silver. Energy and resource savings include optimisation of water consumption and energy performance, use of regional and recycled materials, management of construction waste and improved air quality and comfort. Abundant natural light, use of local materials and compacting the building footprint to reduce site disturbance have also contributed to the building’s sustainable features. The design elegantly reflects the integrated program of this one-of-a-kind facility incorporating local textures and materials, siting the building sensitively on campus and creating a clinic that is a great place to work, learn and visit.