Industry Canada

Industry Canada
Government of Canada

Government of Canada
Government of Alberta

Government of Alberta

May 04, 2009 14:13 ET

Governments Act to Renew Universities and Colleges: Canada and Alberta Invest in Research Capacity

EDMONTON, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - May 4, 2009) - The Honourable Gary Goodyear, Canada's Minister of State (Science and Technology), along with the Honourable Rona Ambrose, Canada's Minister of Labour, and the Honourable Doug Horner, Alberta Minister of Advanced Education and Technology, today announced investments totalling more than $348 million in 28 projects at post-secondary institutions throughout Alberta.

As part of Canada's Economic Action Plan, the Government of Canada introduced the Knowledge Infrastructure Program, a two-year $2-billion economic stimulus measure to support infrastructure enhancement at Canadian post-secondary institutions, including universities and community colleges. Today's announcement celebrates the projects that qualify under the program in Alberta.

"Our government's investment provides significant short-term economic stimulus in local communities throughout Alberta, while at the same time strengthening Canada's long-term capacity for research and innovation," said Minister of State Goodyear. "The renewal of college and university facilities will encourage more world-class researchers to work in Canada and give them the tools they need to make more discoveries that will benefit Canadians and people around the world."

The program is helping to provide economic stimulus and promote employment by creating jobs for engineers, architects, tradespeople and technicians. It is also helping to generate the advanced technological infrastructure needed to keep Canada's research and educational facilities at the forefront of scientific advancement.

"Our government recognizes that scientific and technological innovation is fundamental to our economic and social progress," said Minister Ambrose. "We must all work together to ensure that science and technology become a true competitive advantage for Canada to get more ideas from the lab to the marketplace, to create new jobs, and to build a stronger economy for Canada and a better future for all of us."

"We are pleased this funding reflects a Campus Alberta approach by recognizing strategic priorities throughout Alberta's post-secondary system," said Minister Horner. "This partnership among the two governments and the institutions advances high-priority science, research and maintenance projects, while strengthening our shared goals of building Canada's knowledge-based economy for future generations."

Central to Alberta's Budget 2009 is Alberta's Capital Plan, which supports $7.2 billion in 2009-10 and a record $23.2 billion over three years to build roads, healthcare facilities, schools and other public infrastructure. This year's investment alone will support over 80 000 jobs across the economy directly benefiting Albertans and Alberta communities. This capital investment complements the government's four-point plan for economic recovery, which calls for keeping an eye on spending, using savings to protect programs and services for Albertans while keeping taxes low, continuing to invest in infrastructure, and promoting the province on the world stage.

Canada's Economic Action Plan sets out to stimulate the Canadian economy over the next two years and to improve our long-term competitiveness through $12 billion in new infrastructure investment, which includes the $2-billion Knowledge Infrastructure Program. This new support is the next substantive investment in the Government of Canada's multi-year Science and Technology Strategy, Mobilizing Science and Technology to Canada's Advantage.

For more information about the Knowledge Infrastructure Program, including program criteria, application instructions and a list of the approved projects to date, please visit www.ic.gc.ca/knowledge-infrastructure.


BACKGROUNDER

Knowledge Infrastructure Program

The Knowledge Infrastructure Program is a two-year, $2-billion economic stimulus measure to support infrastructure enhancement at post-secondary institutions across Canada.

The Program provides funding to support deferred maintenance, repair and expansion projects at universities and colleges, and responds directly to the need indicated by post-secondary institutions to improve existing campus infrastructure across the country. A major portion of this infrastructure is near the end of its projected lifecycle and, in many cases, does not adequately meet the needs of today's research and teaching activities.

The Program has two components. The university component gives preference to projects that can improve the quality of research and development at the institution. The college component supports projects at other post-secondary institutions, such as colleges, publicly funded polytechnic schools and institutes of technology, which will strengthen their ability to deliver advanced knowledge and skills training.

Projects are assessed according to their ability to quickly and effectively generate economic activity and support job creation. Project readiness and economic impact are, therefore, key criteria used in project selection. Projects are also assessed on their ability to enhance research capacity, support the attraction of new students and provide a better educational experience for the highly skilled workers of tomorrow.

The Program will not only generate economic benefits and support job creation, but will also have an important positive net impact on the environment by reducing energy use, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving waste management at universities and colleges across Canada.

Knowledge Infrastructure Program Investments at the University of Alberta

Through the Knowledge Infrastructure Program, the federal government is investing more than $52 million to fund three projects at the University of Alberta. The Province of Alberta and others are providing $75.6 million in funding for these projects.

The following projects are being funded at the University of Alberta:



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Provincial and
Project Description Federal Contribution Other Contribution
($000) ($000)
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Chemistry and Biological
Science Buildings -
Deferred Maintenance
Upgrades 10 000 14 500
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Facility Alteration
Request Program 2 122 5 878
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Health Research Innovation
Facility: Fit-up 40 000 55 163
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Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable Gary Goodyear
    Minister of State (Science and Technology)
    Gary Toft
    Director of Communications
    613-943-7599
    or
    Industry Canada
    Media Relations
    613-943-2502
    or
    Alberta Advanced Education and Technology
    Rachel Bouska
    Public Affairs Officer
    Communications
    780-427-5450