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New College Residence by 2027

Published on

Cathy Dobson 

The wheels are in motion to build a new residence at Lambton College to house 300 to 350 students.

The college is ready to do its part to ease a housing shortage in Sarnia, said College President Rob Kardas Monday. 

At the same time, a study conducted over the last year suggests that Lambton College’s current residence on London Road is aging and the school will be in a better position to compete for students if a new residence is built.

Lambton College President Rob Kardas. (Lambton College photo)

“It’s critical to have up-to-date student housing,” said Kardas. “We also recognize there’s a housing issue in this community… and we want to play our role to be part of the solution.”

A new residence is proposed for empty space at the north end of the campus, closer to the college than the existing residence on London Road.

The college’s board of governors has given approval to seek out a third party that will develop, design and operate the residence, Kardas said. A Request For Qualification (RFQ) will be issued in the next few weeks.

The idea is to determine what companies are interested in partnering with Lambton College and if those companies have the expertise to take on such a complex project, said Kardas.

Other colleges and universities have hired third-party developers to build their residences with positive results, he said.

“Certainly there are (out-of-town) companies doing this,” Kardas added. “There may be local interest too.”

Construction is anticipated in 2024 or 2025 with the residence opening in September 2027.

Meanwhile, Lambton College’s only residence is a converted hotel at 1485 London Rd. where up to 280 students can be accommodated. 

“I love our current building. It’s tremendous with all the renovations we’ve done,” said Kardas. “But new is always better.”

He said it’s likely that at least a portion of the existing residence will be demolished once the new one opens.

Lambton College has student enrolment of 3,800 this semester and various kinds of housing are needed for them, not only a student residence, Kardas added.

“We welcome private development too.  We need housing both on and off campus.”


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