As the COVID-19 pandemic enters its fifth month, activities at the Campus are still pretty quiet. However, work continues, with many organizations’ staff working remotely, while others are on site with limited access. Most on Campus are doing their best to offer their services by phone or online.
Keely Noiles, Project Coordinator for the Ryan’s Well Foundation says that they have been working remotely since March with someone in the office once a week, working on education and clean water projects around the globe. Catered Affairs has been offering a take-out menu for ordering ahead (by phone or email) and curbside pick up. Featuring local produce and fare, these meals are ready to grill or heat and eat.
New on Campus is My Local Markets, a local produce and product delivery service based in one of the Campus buildings. “We made the move into our new home at Kemptville Campus in June, and it couldn't feel more like the right place to be! If a business place could feel like home this is it,” said owner Darlene Collin. “The campus staff have been so wonderful and helpful we are grateful to be included in the Campus vision.” New products are being added every week.
The Campus administration offices are still closed to the public, but staff are reachable via phone and email on the Campus website. For the status of other organizations on Campus, please visit their websites.
Campus Master Plan – The Campus Regeneration Master Plan project was off to a great start in January. Following the Open House public meeting February 10th, online surveys and stakeholder interviews, the consulting team proceeded to the next phase of the project. This has included compiling comments, reviewing background documents and conducting an energy audit of Campus buildings. The arrival of the pandemic in mid-March meant that follow-up meetings and presentations were put on temporary hold, and a revised schedule was developed.
Project lead Paul Hicks, of Re:Public Urbanism, reported that things were taking longer because of Covid-19. “Normally, on a project like this, we’d be meeting as a team, reviewing drawings and plans,” said Hicks. “We haven’t been able to gather round a table – either as a team or with the Campus group – since the beginning of March. Holding virtual meetings helps, but in truth, everything takes longer right now. Our focus continues to be ensuring that the Campus ends up with a great master plan at the end of this process.”
The Building Energy Audit and Background Reports are now complete and have been reviewed by the Campus Board and staff. Once staff and the Board review the Master Plan Report, a draft will be brought forward to the public for feedback later in July. Watch for information about its release. A final report is expected by the end of the summer.
Campus Governance – The Campus Board of directors is currently composed of three members: Mayor Nancy Peckford (Chair), Deputy Mayor Jim McManaman, and Stéphane Vachon, Business Superintendent for Conseil des écoles publiques de l’Est de l’Ontario (CEPEO). This transition board, along with three staff members, has been managing the operation of the Campus since the Municipality of North Grenville acquired the Campus in 2018.
In the short term, to assist the current Board in Campus decisions, an interim Advisory Committee was established made up of local business people and regional stakeholders. The Committee has met informally (and once virtually) providing input on the Master Plan.
Meanwhile, because the Municipality is the owner of the Campus, Mayor Peckford and Deputy Mayor McManaman asked North Grenville CAO Gary Dyke to seek out a suitable firm to provide guidance on the best governance and administrative structure for the Campus. The consulting firm of StrategyCorp was engaged in May, and began investigating ideal options for Board composition and operational structure.
“We know there is a lot of interest in expanding the Campus Board to reflect the diverse interests within our great community and region,” stated Mayor and Board Chair Nancy Peckford. “The firm’s advice will provide Council with the tools and direction for creating a Board that best suits the needs of the Campus.” Their report is expected later this summer.
Campus Trails – As the heat of summer is upon us, the Campus remains a perfect place to stroll, hike or cycle, as long as physical distancing rules are followed. Besides the grounds and sidewalks surrounding the buildings, the Campus has a network of trails as part of North Grenville’s trail system.
North Grenville Councillor Doreen O’Sullivan has expressed an interest in the Campus Trails, and the idea that they should be better integrated within the North Grenville Trail system. Councillor O’Sullivan is a long-time member of the Active Transportation Advisory Committee, the Municipality’s representative on the Ferguson Forest Centre Board of Directors, and an active hiker herself.
“The Municipality is exploring a number of options regarding the trails,” said Councillor O’Sullivan recently, emphasizing that collaboration and consistency are key. “Ultimately, improved maintenance, classification and signage will mean a better experience for our local residents and visitors alike.”
More information on Campus Trails can be found on the Campus website. https://www.kemptvillecampus.ca/about
Campus Quick Facts:
Total acres occupied by the Campus = 630
Total number of forested acres = 360
Campus Communications: Tom Graham, TD Graham + Associates
Cell: 613-882-3885 E: firstname.lastname@example.org