The University of Toronto governing council approved a motion last Thursday for the beginning of Phase Two of the renovation of the W.G. Davis Building.
Davis Phase Two, as described by UTM’s principal Ulrich Krull, focuses on remodelling the building’s ground floor. The renovation includes transforming the current front entrance to be more accessible as a transport drop-off and pick-up point and moving away from the RAWC entry as the primary entrance. As well, student seating space will be doubled to accommodate a thousand students, with multiple options including a café and pedestal seating. A permanent location for food services, which is currently in the temporary food court will also be established.
Phase Two follows the development of academic space on the second floor and of new labs and lecture halls on the basement level. The administration eventually plans to initiate Davis Phase Three, which consists of the construction of a students’ services plaza.
The council also approved other items on the agenda, including a motion to support “the revised template for community hospital affiliation agreements between the University of Toronto and the community hospitals.” This motion allows the president to sign off on agreements of the same kind on behalf of the council, with resulting contracts all filed with the secretary of the governing council.
Modifications with respect to policies of workplace harassment and violence resulted in to the policy on sexual violence and harassment and the sexual violence and prevention centre. As a result, overlapping material within all policies were approved.
According to the Council’s agenda, “In the fall of 2016 when the policy on sexual violence and sexual harassment was being considered by governing council, we had anticipated that in view of the potentially overlapping subject matter between that policy and the policy with respect to workplace harassment, and the policy with respect to workplace violence, the latter two policies might need to be amended to incorporate references to the former. These are the amendments that are now being brought forward.”
Also discussed in the meeting was an annual report from the university’s ombudsperson Ellen D. Hodnett, who called for the office of the ombudsperson to be restructured due to low-student use of services. Hodnett proposed that the office of the ombudsperson should be modelled after the governance system at U of T—to reach out to the UTM and UTSC campuses who have recorded meager numbers accessing services from the office in the past. Previous attempts to advertise ombudsperson services included intermittent office hours at the two campuses—a move that was unsuccessful.
The next governing council meeting will take place on Thursday December 4th.