Campus Development

Major Capital Projects

The purpose of a new capital project and major renovation is to support the goals of the university through fostering academic innovation, enriching student experience, strengthening enrolment, supporting research excellence, developing outstanding human resources, sustaining campus renewal, ensuring financial stability, and engaging our community.


Dalhousie University is strongly committed to the future and making positive improvements to facilities and infrastructure to ensure that Dalhousie remains one of the top universities in the country.

The university is taking significant strides towards improving the condition of facilities through a combination of new projects and the renewal of existing buildings. 

Active Projects

Expanded Arts Centre

A $38.5-million expansion to the Dalhousie Arts Centre is being built to accommodate the new scope of the Fountain School of Performing Arts.

Visit the Expanded Arts Centre page for details.

Budget: $38.5 M


Dalhousie Thermal Plant Renewal Project

Dalhousie’s 40-year old heating plant is at capacity. The university must replace existing equipment or invest in a new system capable of generating enough heating and cooling to meet the demands of a growing campus.

Learn more on the Dalhousie Thermal Plant Renewal Project web page.

Budget TBD

Bicentennial Common (Planning)

Dalhousie’s campus master plan of 2010 calls for the 60,000 square-foot area at the top of University Avenue, adjacent to the Killam Library, to be re-designed into a vibrant and diverse public space.

The goal is to create an inspirational public space that is symbolic and emblematic – a ‘Bicentennial Commons’ that is meaningful locally and globally, for people of all cultures. A year-long engagement process with the Dal community — including an online survey, 25 stakeholder engagement meetings and eight pop-up sessions —gathered ideas for the space.  Aspects being considered include symbols, agriculture, infrastructure, accessibility, Indigenous and settler history, as well as ways to represent the 120+ (approx.) countries that play a role at Dalhousie University. 

As its name implies, the Bicentennial Common will also serve as a legacy project for Dal’s 200th anniversary. The iconic Dal 200 sign on the upper part of Studley Quad will be integrated into the project and a time capsule filled with items submitted by members of the Dal community will be incorporated as a fun element for a future celebration. 

From December 2018 to May 2019, a number of elements have been and will continue to be introduced to the space, including furniture, heat lamps and lighting. 

Budget - TBD

Completion Date - TBD

Recently Completed Projects

Agricultural Campus Biomass Thermal Plant Upgrade

The biomass thermal plant at Dalhousie’s Agricultural Campus has been in use for close to 30 years and is near the end of its useful life. This project upgraded the district energy system from steam to hot-water and upgraded the current heating plant building with a new biomass power boiler and generator that will promote and support existing and new sustainable biomass supply, and reduce energy costs by 30 per cent.

Updates and information are available on the Agricultural Campus Biomass Thermal Plant Update page.

Read more about the Biomass Energy Plant opening here.
Project Fact Sheet  [PDF 612 KB]

Budget – $26.5 million

Tupper Building/Clinical Research Centre Retrofit

The Sir Charles Tupper Medical Building, the Clinical Research Centre and the interconnecting Tupper Link have the highest energy intensity of any major buildings at Dalhousie University due to the nature of their use.  The buildings use more energy per unit area than every other major building at Dalhousie University.

Visit the Tupper Building / CRC Energy Retrofit page to see the program of improvements planned to improve the indoor enviornment. These have been developed with Dalhousie’s partner for sustainability and infrastructure renewal for the project, MCW Custom Energy Solutions.

Budget: $12m

Learn more about this project through an excellent Video


The IDEA Project (Sexton Campus Renewal)

The IDEA project is a transformational $64-million investment to Dalhousie’s Engineering and Architecture campus in the heart of Halifax’s emerging innovation district.

Thanks to the generous support of industry, private donors and the Government of Canada, and the students of Dalhousie, the IDEA (Innovation and Design in Engineering and Architecture) Project will reinvent Dalhousie’s downtown campus.

It will add advanced technology and design labs, state-of-the-art engineering facilities, and modern teaching and learning spaces to Dalhousie’s Sexton campus. It will also introduce cutting-edge incubation space to better link students and faculty to industry and entrepreneurs.

The IDEA Project includes the construction of two new buildings: the Emera IDEA Building (formerly the Innovation Building  which is adjacent to C and C1) and the Design Building on Morris Street adjacent to Morroy. The Emera IDEA Building is home to the Emera ideaHUB - an advanced engineering incubator/accelerator space to enhance the educational experience and equip students with the creative and entrepreneurial skills they need for the future. The Emera ideaHUB will better link students and faculty to industry and entrepreneurs, revitalizing the spirit of innovation and entrepreneurship in Atlantic Canada.

Further updates and information are available on The IDEA Project page. Construction Updates are available here.

Read about the official announcement here. 

Read about the Emera ideaHUB announcement here.

Read about the naming of the Irving Oil Auditorium 

Learn more about the project in this Dalnews story. 

Budget: $64.37M

Fitness Centre

Dalhousie’s Board of Governors’ has approved an approach that will deliver the Fitness Centre  in phases. Construction begins September 2016.

View our Fitness Centre page for a full look into the fitness facility to be built at the Eliza Ritchie site on South Street.

View the material presented at the latest public information session (May 2016)  

Budget: 23.3 million

Dentistry Clinic and Facilities Renewal

The Faculty of Dentistry is upgrading its facility in compliance with the latest CSA standards and code regulations that apply to healthcare facilities. The clinic will remain open during the renovation and will be completed in phases by 2018. Phase one began in April 2015.

Further updates and information are available on the Dentistry Clinic and Facilities Renewal page. 

Budget: $27.625M

Student Union Building Renovation

The SUB renovation has been designed to increase capacity and improve the quality of facilities to support special events and conferences, which provides benefits to the students and University but also to the broader community and region as a conference facility. 

The first phase of the project started in June 2015. Visit the Student Union Building Renovation page for more details. 

Budget: 10.7M

University Avenue Protected Bike Lanes Pilot Project

From 2016-2018 in partnership with HRM, Dalhousie implemented a protected bike lanes project (also known as cycle track pilot project) along the north and south sides of University Avenue, from Robie Street to LeMarchant Street.

As of August 2018, full responsibility for maintenance and enfocement now lies with HRM. Any questions or concerns may be addressed bu calling 311.

Learn more about the Protected Bike Lanes Pilot 


Collaborative Health Education Building

The new Collaborative Health Education Building will bring together students, faculty and staff in health-related fields to learn and work in an interpersonal learning environment through shared classrooms, skill labs, learning commons, simulation centre and social spaces.

View the Collaborative Health Education Building page for details into the new interpersonal learning space for students which will educate students in the health professions through an integrated approach.  Read about the official opening. 

Budget:$38.5 M

Carleton to Sexton Campus District Heating Project

The planned replacement of Dalhousie’s steam line to Sexton Campus started in spring 2015 and will be completed by the winter to be ready for heating season. This construction will ensure the University can supply a sustained source of heating for Sexton Campus. Excavation began May 19th.

Further updates and information are available on the Carleton to Sexton Campus District Heating page.

Budget: 6.3M

Wallace McCain Learning Commons

The Wallace McCain Learning Commons provides a space for students, faculty, staff and the surrounding community to come together and mingle, study and access IT.

View the Wallace McCain Learning Commons page for a look at the new student learning commons that will opened October 15. Read more about the opening here.

Budget:$6 M

LeMarchant Place

Opened in September 2014, LeMarchant Place serves to meet the demand for residence spaces with Dalhousie's growing student population.

Located on Studley Campus across from Risley Hall, LeMarchant Place not only provides much needed beds for students, but also offers key student services in close proximity.  

View the LeMarchant Place page for full details on Dalhousie's most recently completed new facility.  

Budget:$48 M

Life Sciences Research Institute

Dalhousie University has partnered with Capital Health and the IWK Health Centre to construct the Life Sciences Research Institute (LSRI), a five-storey, state-of-the-art building that provides research and incubator space for life sciences, one of the region’s fastest growing sectors.

Budget: $65 M

Steele Ocean Sciences Building

Oceans researchers and students can benefit from the addition of the Steele Ocean Sciences Building, a 76,000 sq. ft. complex added to the west end of the Life Sciences Centre.  

View the Steele Ocean Sciences Building page to discover the unique features the building is offering.  

Budget: $41.5 M

Life Sciences Centre Retrofit

Home to the largest collection of academic researchers, the Life Sciences Centre has undergone upgrades to create a more sustainable environment.

The Life Sciences Centre Retrofit is providing enhanced capacity in electrical, heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems to accommodate the demands of modern equipment and research

Budget: $28.7 M

Aquatron Project

The Aquatron Laboratory offers researchers approximately 50,000 sq ft of research space and houses a large number of marine and fresh water labs where scientists conduct work in marine engineering, marine biology and oceanography.

View the Aquatron Project page for a detailed look into the new Laboratory.

Budget: $4.6 M

Campus Improvements

Third Floor Killam Renovation

The third floor of the Killam was renovated in spring 2016. View the PDF to learn more. 

Third Floor Killam Renovation


Weldon Law Grad Student Area

The Fourth floor Grad Student area of the Weldon Law Building was renovated in spring 2016. View the PDF to learn more. 

Weldon Law Grad Student Area