Kitchen and Dining Room Construction

Paul Penner stands in the new kitchen entryway under construction

New Kitchen Space Taking Shape

August 7, 2020

Construction is moving at a frenetic pace in August. For the fall term, we plan to have our residence open at 50% capacity with only a single student in each residence room. This requires that the kitchen be operational and that we have adequate space in the dining room for resident students to eat while physically distanced and separated at tables by plastic barriers.

In September, construction will continue on the elevator and new stairway to connect the dining room to the chapel foyer.  Renovating the existing kitchen space will continue over the autumn months.

In late July, Operations Director Paul Penner gave a video tour of the progress to date, showing:

  • Exterior of the new kitchen area and an expanded loading dock area
  • A green roof on this addition (Assisted by a Sustainability Grant from the Region of Waterloo)
  • The clerestory beside the green roof brings light into the servery area below
  • The window in the student lounge (across from the Campus Host/Sr. Resident apartment) is partially enclosed due to the new adjacent stairway that connects the dining room to the chapel foyer
  • The chapel foyer will be expanded to accommodate the new stairs and an elevator
  • The dining room ceiling grid is being installed
  • We are expanding the dining room onto the patio, allowing for more seating (new capacity @300) and replacing 1964 windows that lined the old ‘lower lounge’
  • Entry to the new serving area is through two gracious doors on the ‘Westmount side’ of the dining room, featuring  lots of light from the clerestory
  • Windows to the kitchen prep area provide lots of light for our Cooks.
  • A separate prep area is included for special diets
  • A new walk in freezer, cooler and dry storage room will increase our food inventory capacity and ability to serve larger groups
  • An expanded dish washing area is adjacent to the loading dock so compost can easily be disposed
  • The wall Paul shows will be demolished, connecting the new kitchen to the existing kitchen area which will be renovated for more storage (tables/chairs) janitor space and staff washrooms.

The old kitchen area will also be renovated to include a “Pantry” for students prepare snacks 24-7 and for Associate students to store their lunches. This space will also include a private dining room to connect over a meal or for smaller meetings.

We are pleased to report that the project is on budget and we’re grateful that over $3m of our $4.2m in gifts and pledges is in hand from our “Fill the Table” campaign.

The Building Project

Since Conrad Grebel University College was first built more than 55 years ago, the residence has grown, apartments were added, and our classrooms, library, archives, and other academic program spaces have all expanded dramatically. However, our kitchen and dining room are largely the same as they were in 1964. It’s now time to reinvest in these important facilities.  

To accommodate our growing community, we are building a new kitchen and dining room. The project includes a student pantry, as well as an elevator and staircase to the chapel foyer.

Learn more about this project and the Fill the Table campaign.

See the final building design plans.

Contact Mimi Browne if you have any construction-related questions prior to your visit.