Cutting edge School of Design facility opens today at George Brown College

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Modern, collaborative space fuels student learning, innovation and industry research

TORONTO - George Brown College opens a new leading-edge facility today with the relocation of its School of Design to the Daniels City of the Arts complex, just blocks from its existing Daphne Cockwell Centre for Health Science. The move represents an expansion of the College’s Waterfront Campus, establishing a hub for design, innovation and technical skills training in the East Bayfront community.

Built to help address critical skills shortages in industries that require advanced design thinking and innovation, the multi-purpose, state-of-the-art design facility provides more than 100,000 square feet of space for hands-on learning and collaboration, both among students and with industry partners.

“This modern, flexible space is a perfect match for our holistic approach to design – which encompasses not only aesthetics, but also technical feasibility, business feasibility and social purpose,” said Anne Sado, President, George Brown College. “As digital disruption transforms the design, arts and digital media sectors, we’re preparing creative people to apply their skills in relevant, career-focused ways, while enabling enhanced industry research and innovation.”

Poised to create a generation of professionals equipped to become the design leaders of tomorrow, the facility houses an Innovation Exchange, a world-class research hub where students and businesses team up to bring new ideas to market. The Exchange was supported by a 15.6 million dollar investment from the federal government’s Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund, which aims to enhance and modernize research facilities on Canadian campuses.

“The Innovation Exchange is a living lab that tests commercial ideas, concepts and user functionality,” said Luigi Ferrara, Dean, Centre for Arts, Design and Information Technology, George Brown College. “Students will gain hands-on experience alongside the industry’s most innovative creators to help solve real-world problems.”

The new facility is also home to a Future Ways of Living Lab, Digital Incubator, Student Maker Space and the globally recognized think tank, the Institute without Boundaries, which works with partners across the city and around the world to develop innovative local solutions to 21st century global challenges.

Approximately 1,800 students will be trained at the School of Design each year, providing 650 highly skilled and in-demand graduates annually. Classes in the new School of Design begin today.

Quick Facts about new School of Design

The new School of Design includes:

  • An Innovation Exchange to advance specialized research, innovation and training.
  • The Institute without Boundaries, developing solutions to global challenges.
  • The Digital Media & Gaming Incubator, supporting start-ups to create new design-driven products and services.
  • Smart, purpose-built collaboration spaces including the Future Ways of Living Lab, IN Store, Digital Incubator and Student Maker Space.
  • Specialized labs including a usability testing lab and augmented and virtual reality lab.
  • Training and certification programs for industry professionals.

George Brown has a long history of building and revitalizing communities across Toronto, including opening its Waterfront Campus in East Bayfront, its student residence in Corktown, and the recent announcement of The Arbour, Ontario’s first tall-wood, low-carbon, net-zero energy building. Now with the relocation of the School of Design, the college is once again an anchor resident in a burgeoning community. 

To download high resolution images of the new School of Design facility, please visit The School of Design media kit on Dropbox:  

About George Brown College

Toronto's George Brown College has established a reputation for equipping students with the skills, industry experience and credentials to pursue the careers of their choice. The college offers programs from its three campuses located across the downtown core. George Brown offers 167 full-time programs and 191 continuing education certificates/designations across a wide variety of professions to a student body of over 30,000 (full-time enrolment) students, including 23 per cent international students; and over 68,000 continuing education registrants. Students can earn certificates, diplomas, graduate certificates, apprenticeships and degrees.


For more information, please contact:
Rima Kar                                          
External Communications Specialist
Office: (416) 415-5000 ext. 4791