Projects | Academic | Huron University College Welcome Centre 


Huron University College Welcome Centre


An Architecture of Path and Place

A Student Focused Welcome




The project involved sorting out many decades of piecemeal additions, to create a clear sense of entry and way-finding for the campus as a whole. The design of a new Welcome Centre addition for Student Services and the Registrar operation will better support the College with a prominent main entrance, that offers a front desk and much needed way-finding throughout the campus. An overall strategic plan was established to guide the campus development including assessment and design for changes to pathways, landscaping and services. The schematic designs have set the stage for a series of innovative and inspiring architectural pieces that create the coherence and sense of welcoming entry that has been lacking for the campus. Each piece will act as a catalyst for surrounding spaces and heritage elements, and will contribute to the University’s mission for student-focused learning and growth. The project was tendered under construction cost estimates. However, in response to the momentum created by the master-planning exercise, and buoyed by the results of the tender, the University is proceeding with a bolder vision for its campus rejuvenation, which will include new classrooms and lecture spaces in addition to the programmatic needs identified during the Welcome Centre project.


Our Role:

Design, Documentation and Procurement.



Working from early master-planning and consultation work, the design of the new Welcome Centre addition and renovation is an experience that knits...

- The building services as infrastructure that supports greeting, gathering, wayfinding. It is a lens through which the existing campus and heritage structures can be viewed and experienced.

- An architecture of pathways and places of gathering.

- An architecture that works outwards from programme and the larger goals of campus integration.

- An interior experience, as the building is mostly hidden from view. 

- Centralized staffing resources

- Strategic change

- Careful integration

- A well defined sense of entry and way-finding


“We are very pleased with the careful and diligent initial work that John MacDonald Architect has brought to the early planning and design process. Their Project Launch and Information Reporting management systems have created clear objectives and stakeholder understanding for the project, and we are excited by the design possibilities that are taking shape. John, Matthew, and the JMA staff are careful listeners, and their organized approach to the work has helped us to understand the complexities of the undertaking. JMA enjoys our full confidence, and we look forward to the journey ahead.”


— Neil Carruthers
CAO (retired) Huron University College



Project Data


Alteration / Addition



London, Ontario

1,860 m² (20,000 sq. ft.)

Contract Documents Completed 2016