February 17th 2021- Queen's University will defer the planned renovation of the John Deutsch University Centre (JDUC), home of the Alma Mater Society (AMS) and Society of Graduate and Professional Students (SGPS) until May 2022.
Accompanying this deferral will be the a deferral of an increased undergraduate student fee that will contribute to the renovation project. The fee will not increase until September 2022. “Many students were concerned about an increase in fees being introduced in such a period of uncertainty,” said Jared den Otter, AMS President. “Deferring the introduction of additional fees until September 2022, and reducing overall risks to the project, is welcome news.”
The project is almost ready to go, however, the Office of Advancement continues its work to secure funding through outreach amidst the challenges posed by the pandemic.
“This is a really exciting project that will modernize the facility to create a fully accessible, sustainable, and inclusive location for students to learn, socialize, and study,” said Donna Janiec, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration) stated in the Queen's Gazette. “We’re excited to work with the current and incoming AMS and SGPS executives to continue to move the project forward, but we also have to respond to some of the challenges introduced by the current pandemic, and the impacts that has on campus and on issues like funding, and pressures on labour and supply chains. For these reasons, we felt it prudent to give ourselves a bit more time to ensure we’re ready to proceed.”
The JDUC renovation project is projected to cost $62.3 million and students will pay the bulk of the renovations costs through student levies over 25 years. Contributions to the project from student levies began in September 2020. Queen's University will give $30 million in project financing and has pledged $11.8 million to the project from operating funds and donor funds.