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Four Directions moves out

An expansion is underway at Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre, with a planned re-opening this fall.

  • [Four Directions Queen's University renovations construction June 2018]
    144 Barrie – the new addition to Four Directions – will feature a large main floor room dedicated to ceremonies. (University Communications)
  • [Four Directions Queen's University 144 Barrie renovations floor plans main floor]
    The ground floor of 144 Barrie will include a library, meeting space, and a cultural and ceremonial room. (Supplied Photo
  • [Four Directions Queen's University 144 Barrie renovations floor plans top floor]
    The upper floor of 144 Barrie features some programming and quiet space, along with Four Directions office staff space. (Supplied Photo)
  • [Four Directions Queen's University renovations construction June 2018]
    The former kitchen at Four Directions Aboriginal Student centre has been gutted, and will be expanded and moved to the front of the building. This area will become part of a meeting and multi-purpose room. (University Communications)
  • [Four Directions Queen's University 146 Barrie renovations floor plans main floor]
    The ground floor of 146 Barrie will include an expanded kitchen and meeting space. (Supplied Photo)
  • [Four Directions Queen's University 146 Barrie renovations floor plans top floor]
    146 Barrie's upper floor features more office and programming room. (Supplied Photo)
  • [1893 newspaper ad furniture]
    When opening up the walls at 144 and 146 Barrie, workers found an old newspaper ad from 1893. (Supplied Photo)

Back in the fall, it was announced that Four Directions would expand from its home in 146 Barrie to include the neighbouring house.

Now, with the insides of both 144 and 146 Barrie Street torn down to the plaster, work will soon begin on putting the expanded and renovated Four Directions back together in time for the fall.

Once work is complete, the two houses will feature a cultural and ceremonial room, a library, a larger kitchen, multiple meeting rooms, and programming space, along with added office space for staff.

This expansion of Four Directions aligns with the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation task force, which called on Queen’s to develop centralized space for Indigenous activities and the celebration of Indigenous traditions, and to enhance the visibility of Indigenous communities at Queen’s and promote inclusive learning and community spaces on campus. 

Recommendation 13 specifically called on Queen's to "Expand Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre and ensure that it is appropriately staffed and resourced to adequately support expanding enrolment of Aboriginal students".

While workers were prepared for anything when they began work up the 19th-century homes, you never quite know what you will find when you open up the walls of older buildings.

Contractors working on 144 and 146 Barrie got an interesting lead on a furniture supplier, albeit over a century too late. An ad from 1893 was found during demolition work.

While construction is underway, Four Directions staff will still be available. They are currently located in Victoria Hall. To learn more, visit queensu.ca/fdasc