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Growing, Growing: Campus Master Plan Guides the Future

Campus master plan map

  • September 2003: 947 students. 
  • September 2013: 9,697 students.

In only a decade, the number of students studying at the Ontario Tech University (Ontario Tech) increased tenfold! And this is just the beginning. With several new state-of-the-art facilities constructed over the last 10 years and a variety of innovative programs offered to undergrads and graduates, the campus is in demand and needs room to grow.

Ontario Tech and Durham College (DC) own a section of Windfields Farm lands, 355 acres of real estate north of the campus. Based on projected enrolment growth for Ontario Tech and DC over the next 15 years, both institutions are developing a joint Campus Master Plan (CMP) that envisions new classrooms, research labs, libraries and collaborative student spaces. "The plan shows how everything comes together and where these spaces should be added," says Karen Young, Ontario Tech’s Joint Campus Master Planning Co-ordinator.

Ontario Tech enrolment at the shared Oshawa campus is projected to be nearly 28,000 full-time equivalent students by the year 2030. To address our needs, the CMP recommends the addition of 222,058 gross square metres, the equivalent of 1,200 typical family homes. The vision is to create a vibrant, mixed-use hub that provides new opportunities for institutional, private and community partnerships and stronger integration with Ontario Tech's downtown Oshawa location and DC's Whitby campus. Fifteen principles guide this vision:

  1. Challenge design convention to respond to student and faculty growth and integrate with the surrounding community.
  2. Vision based in practicality, with phased, flexible development.
  3. Walkability, with priority for pedestrians.
  4. Transport and transit priorities in long-term planning and facilities.
  5. Green connections with the surrounding landscape.
  6. Interactions and long-term connections to promote integration with the surrounding community and land uses.
  7. Identity – strengthen the physical relationship between Ontario Tech and DC while providing a means for both institutions to reinforce their own identities.
  8. Use land efficiently.
  9. Take advantage of partnership opportunities.
  10. Accommodate enrolment growth and diverse student needs for both Ontario Tech and Durham College.
  11. Incorporate sustainability principles that are measurable and holistic. 
  12. Innovation and technology – accommodate spaces for innovative startups, technology and manufacturing.
  13. Articulate and directly inform a decision-making process with respect to physical form, space utilization and partnership to ensure the continued success and growth of both institutions.
  14. Reflect cultural heritage and diversity.
  15. Work for the short, medium and long terms.

"There are many exciting opportunities to grow strategically and build the university’s reputation," says Karen Young. "Ontario Tech is in an area with a tremendous amount of population growth. What’s even more exciting is we’re contributing to the population growth across the Greater Toronto Area."

This fall Ontario Tech will hold an open house to share the details of the CMP. Visit for updates and to see the draft framework of the plan.

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