The CIGI Campus, located in Waterloo, Ontario, is a hub of Canadian-based research and studies in international affairs. Built on the site of the former Seagram Distillery, the campus is home to academic and research programs that are partnerships between the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) and other institutions, including the Balsillie School of International Affairs (BSIA).
In 2007, CIGI partnered with the University of Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University to launch the BSIA. In 2009, CIGI announced plans for the new CIGI Campus in Waterloo, Ontario. With construction completed in November 2011, the campus now houses CIGI and BSIA, and in time, may also be home to other academic and research institutions.
The $69-million CIGI Campus received federal and provincial funding totalling $50 million through the Knowledge Infrastructure Program and Ontario's 2009 budget. The City of Waterloo donated the land for the campus through a 99-year lease.
CIGI’s headquarters are located on the CIGI Campus in the former Seagram Museum, an historic 19th-century barrel warehouse. Tours of the campus are offered throughout the year and are an excellent opportunity to engage with the site’s history and buildings.
Construction and Awards
The internationally recognized CIGI Campus was designed by Toronto-based Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects. The campus centres on a landscaped courtyard, with a public art installation designed by Rhode Island artist Richard Fleischner, offering a contemporary take on the traditional academic quad building. Highlighted by wood, glass and stone elements, the Oxbridge-style complex also features a signature bell tower and a wood-clad, 250-seat auditorium for academic and public events. Construction management services were provided by Gregory J. Bewick and Associates Limited and Cooper Construction Limited.
In 2014, the CIGI Campus won a prestigious national honour with the 2014 Governor General’s Medal in Architecture. In 2012, the CIGI Campus was honoured with an International Award for architectural excellence from the Royal Institution for British Architecture. The Campus is the only building in Canada to receive this award in 2012. The campus was also declared the 2012 Project of the Year by Canadian Interiors’ Best of Canada Design Competition and was shortlisted at the World Architecture Festival in July 2012.
More information on the construction and design of the CIGI Campus is available in the Introduction to the CIGI Campus video.