Projects | Academic | University of Guelph Creelman Hall 


University of Guelph Creelman Hall                      


Dining in Style

Returning the historic charm to the hall and introducing eating choices that the student population needs



The renovation of Creelman Hall, now a marché-style dining hall in the University of Guelph, required:

- A re-organization of traffic flow through the servery and dining room, improving the transition between spaces,

- A rethinking of the kitchen to increase the number of food offerings and the way that they are accessed by students,

- New interior finishes, consistent with the historic character of the facility,

- A restoration of the historic building envelope,

- Replacement of the HVAC system, 

- Hazardous substance abatement,

- Restoration of the windows for an increase of natural light levels,

- Completion for the start of the school year, a strict and tight deadline.


The renovation of the dining hall uncovered its historical architectural glory.  This light filled space is now a place where students like to relax with their peers while sharing a meal.  For the University of Guelph, it is not only a hospitality venue that they can offer with pride, but also a place where students can form great memories of their day-to-day experience.


Our Role:

Prime consultant - Facility review, design, documentation, procurement and construction administration.



Whenever cooking involves the potential to develop grease-laden vapour, the Fire Code requires that a commercial kitchen ventilation system be installed to extract these vapours and to replace the extracted air. Regardless of the size of the kitchen, a system typically includes an extraction hood, an exhaust fan, a make up air unit, a fire suppression system and connections to gas supply and building fire alarm systems as may be required. Where there is a significant amount of cooking equipment (such as in restaurants or cafeterias) these systems can become quite large and complex, and can expend a significant amount of energy. In order to meet increasingly stringent energy efficiency requirements, sophisticated control systems can be introduced to manage the consumption using an on-demand approach. As equipment under the hood is used, sensors adjust the amount of air exhausted based on temperature, modulating the air extracted by the hood to meet the changing demand.


The Creelman Hall servery required a complete overhaul of its existing kitchen ventilation system, including:

- A new commercial kitchen hood exhaust and makeup air system.

- The replacement of the rooftop mechanical unit that provided ventilation air and make up air to the facility. This equipment was designed to fit within the footprint of the replaced unit, to avoid replacing the existing roof structure.


"The Creelman Hall renewal project involved a tight construction timeline, renewal of aging building systems that were limiting our operation, 

historic restoration of a listed heritage building, and budgetary pressures. Notwithstanding, John, Matthew and their integrated team were able to balance these key project drivers and remain true to our vision of how the dining hall and marché style servery should be revitalized. The hall is our flagship dining and hospitality facility, and has been successfully relaunched with bright and inviting spaces that blend its historic character with a state of the art dining facility.”


— Ed Townsley

Assistant Director, Food and Retail Services University of Guelph



Project Data

Academic / Heritage




Guelph, Ontario

1,400 m² (15,145 sq. ft.)​

Construction Completed 2013