Construction work continues on the new Holland College student residence on the corner of Grafton and Cumberland on April 25. The $6.96-million building is set to finish on Aug. 7. Beth Atkinson photo
Construction of the $6.96-million Holland College student residence is on schedule to open in late August, says Justin Dunn, the college’s director of facilities management.
The demolition of seven properties concluded last August to make room for the new property. Construction of the four-storey residence began in September on the corner of Grafton and Cumberland.
The new residence will have 80 beds and is modeled similar to Glendenning Hall with 186 beds across the street on Grafton.
Dunn said the students’ best interest is their top priority.
“We want to make sure that they feel comfortable, that they feel safe and that they have all of the amenities that they need to be successful as a student here.”
He said it’s not uncommon for 200 students to wait for a place in residence, adding another building will provide accommodations for those who need it.
“It’s very much a need heard when interviewing prospective students. This is what they want.”
With land being hard to come by in the downtown core of Charlottetown, Dunn said they’re being careful for future building plans.
“It is always a challenge when we look for expansion. We’re very cognizant of our surroundings and space planning.”
They focused on bridging the appearance of the new building with the previous buildings so there isn’t any confusion, said Dunn. The CAST building and the new residence will have matching brick.
“We take great care and attention to try and make sure that our campus has a look and feel that it has stood here proudly for a long time and it will continue to stand here proudly for many years to come.”
For the most part, they’ve stayed on schedule by making up some lost time on the weekends, he said.
“Compared to three years ago where it was like the Game of Thrones winter, it’s been a good winter. Good for projects and good for us as human beings.”
Ronnie MacKinnon, the college’s facilities administrator, said for now construction work is on schedule.
“It’s like anything else, it could be on schedule today, but off tomorrow.”
The building will be finished Aug. 7 but might be behind by a couple of days.
Drywall is being put up on the bottom floor while the top levels are a few steps behind, with work being done on framing.
Electrical and mechanical work is still in progress while brick and siding is already on site to complete the outer appearance.