Canada and Ontario invest in infrastructure at Brock University and Niagara College

News Release

$26.51‑million investment will create jobs, expand research and foster innovation

November 3, 2016 – St. Catharines, Ontario – Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

The Government of Canada values the role of post‑secondary institutions as they help equip young Canadians with the education and training they need for future careers that will help them join a strong, healthy middle class. Today's $26.51‑million investment at Brock University and Niagara College will do just that by fostering the training needed for the well‑paying middle‑class jobs of today and tomorrow.

The funding was announced by the Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development, and the Honourable Deb Matthews, Ontario's Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development.

Canada's Innovation Agenda aims to make this country a global centre for innovation—one that creates jobs, drives growth across all industries and improves the lives of all Canadians. This investment exemplifies that vision in action.

Brock University is receiving funding for two projects: the District Energy Efficiency Project and the Schmon Tower Innovation Atrium. These projects will improve energy efficiency on campus, which translates into long‑term savings for the university, lower carbon emissions and healthier communities.

A $7.78‑million investment in the District Energy Efficiency Project will enable Brock to replace equipment and piping in the District Energy Facility—a reliable cogeneration facility for electricity, heating and cooling in the university's research facilities. This project will significantly improve the facility's energy efficiency and reduce the university's greenhouse gas emissions. Of this funding, $5.19 million is being provided by the Government of Canada and $2.59 million by the Province of Ontario. Brock University is contributing an additional $2.59 million to the project.

The university will also receive an investment of $8.47 million from the Government of Canada for the Schmon Tower Innovation Atrium, an important part of the new Brock LINC innovation and commercialization space. Brock LINC is a new 30,000 square‑foot research facility that will support entrepreneurs looking to turn their ideas into products and services for the marketplace. Brock University is providing an additional $10.62 million for the project.

Niagara College will receive an investment of $10.26 million for a project at the Niagara‑on‑the‑Lake Campus to support the agri‑food sector in the region. With this funding, Niagara College will build research and innovation labs, specialized training facilities for student entrepreneurship and incubation space for agri‑food businesses. Of this funding, $8.7 million is being provided by the Government of Canada and $1.56 million by the Province of Ontario. Niagara College is contributing an additional $24.33 million.
In total, universities and colleges throughout Ontario will receive more than $1.9 billion from the Government of Canada, the provincial government, the institutions themselves and private donors. Federal funding will be allocated through the Post‑Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund, which will enhance and modernize research facilities on Canadian campuses and improve the environmental sustainability of these facilities.

As a result of these investments, students, professors and researchers will work in state‑of‑the‑art facilities that advance the country's best research. They will collaborate in specially designed spaces that support lifelong learning and skills training. They will work in close proximity with partners to turn discoveries into products or services. In the process, they will train for—and invent—the high‑value jobs of the future. And their discoveries will plant the seeds for the next generation of innovators.

That is how the Strategic Investment Fund will jump‑start a virtuous circle of innovation, creating the right conditions for long‑term growth that will yield benefits for generations to come.

Ontario is making the largest investment in public infrastructure in the province's history—about $160 billion over 12 years—which is supporting 110,000 jobs every year across the province with projects such as hospitals, schools, roads, bridges and transit. Since 2015, the Province has announced support for more than 475 projects that will keep people and goods moving, connect communities and improve quality of life. To learn more about infrastructure projects in your community, go to


"This once‑in‑a-generation investment by the Government of Canada is a historic down payment on the government's vision to position Canada as a global centre for innovation. That means making Canada a world leader in turning ideas into solutions, science into technologies, skills into middle‑class jobs and start‑up companies into global successes."

– The Honourable Navdeep Bains, Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

" One of my favourite parts of being a member of Parliament is seeing our promises come to fruition. This investment in both Brock University and Niagara College is proof positive of our government's commitment to invest in our post‑secondary institutions and provide a renewed culture of innovation for the next generation of Canadian researchers and students. These investments at Brock and Niagara College are indicative of the important work each institution is doing to focus on the needs of the community and the student population. I am proud of our commitment to both of these world‑class institutions, and I look forward to seeing them continue to grow and prosper in the coming years. "

— Chris Bittle, Member of Parliament for St. Catharines

" This support for both Brock University and Niagara College continues to demonstrate the federal government's commitment to, and passion for, supporting families and businesses in Niagara in finding new opportunities through education. This investment will help keep our region at the forefront of innovation, helping to create new businesses and new jobs in an ever‑changing global economy. "

— Vance Badawey, Member of Parliament for Niagara Centre

" An investment in Ontario's students is an investment in our future. Our government's support of new state‑of‑the‑art facilities at Brock University and Niagara College will help equip the young people of the region with the skills they'll need to lead new industry and build up their economy. "

— The Honourable Deb Matthews, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

" The government's support of these projects is a huge investment in Canada's future. Brock University is now much more able to help innovators make Canada a world leader on intellectual and economic fronts. As well, this funding also lets Brock be part of the national effort to help make Canada a global example in lowering the carbon emissions that are damaging the earth's environment. "

— Dr. Tom Traves, Interim President and Vice‑Chancellor, Brock University

" Niagara College welcomes and thanks the federal and provincial governments for this investment in the agri‑food sector. Colleges help train tomorrow's workforce, and this unique project will help economic development in our region by supporting specialized training at Niagara College for student engagement and entrepreneurship and providing incubation space. "

— Dr. Dan Patterson, President, Niagara College

Quick facts

  • The Government of Canada and the Government of Ontario are providing more than $950 million for research infrastructure at institutions across Ontario. Brock University has been awarded $13.66 million by the Government of Canada for two projects, and Niagara College has been awarded $8.7 million for one project.
  • The recently launched Innovation Agenda is designed to ensure Canada is globally competitive in promoting research, translating ideas into new products and services, accelerating business growth and propelling entrepreneurs from the start‑up phase to international success.
  • The targeted, short‑term investments under the Post‑Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund will promote economic activity across Canada and help Canada's universities and colleges develop highly skilled workers, act as engines of discovery, and collaborate on innovations that help Canadian companies compete and grow internationally.
  • The Post‑Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund supports the Government of Canada's climate change objectives by encouraging sustainable and green infrastructure projects.

Associated links

Follow Minister Bains on social media.
Twitter: @MinisterISED


Philip Proulx
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Innovation, Science and Economic Development

Media Relations
Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Allison Buchan‑Terrell
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

Tanya Blazina
Communications Branch
Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development

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