Humber College Centre for Justice Leadership

Dedicated to the teaching of forensic science, Humber College’s new Centre for Justice Leadership will enable students to learn the art of fingerprint dusting and other investigation techniques including laser and video recording in a state-of-the-art forensics lab. Students will also study crime scenes and hone their investigative skills in the facility’s tiered 45-seat theatre with a simulated one-bedroom apartment for the reenactment of crime scenes.

Part of the college’s strategy to annex neighbouring buildings in order to expand its lakeshore campus, the 18,000 s.f. facility will give new life to a former car dealership. The service area will be transformed into the crime scene investigations lab and the former showroom is being converted into classrooms.

The conventional façade of the dealership will be shrouded behind an aluminum screen with oblique proportions and a lush green living wall – swaths of which will be visible through large fissures in the screen. Inspired by the nature of the centres’ activities, the new façade will give the building a simultaneously alluring and discrete appearance. The screen was also conceived to reduce the light levels that previously permeated the interior from the large showroom windows. The vertical garden will provide a soft, natural contrast to the sculptural shape of the screen and the campus’ hard paving. At night the building will radiate an ambient glow from an LED sign that will project Humber’s oversized word mark from behind the screen – adding both drama and safety to the surrounding area.

Inside, a variety of ceiling heights will pinch and expand the spaces. This strategy will further disguise the dealership, while creating the impression of spaciousness and providing the opportunity to conceal the light sources for atmospheric lighting.

Humber College, Toronto, ON
Size:  18,000 sq.ft.
Completion:  September 2010

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