The decision to create McMaster Innovation Park was taken by McMaster University in 2004 when the old Camco/Westinghouse site on Longwood Road South was listed for sale. The 37-acre site was acquired in March of 2005 after a considerable period of negotiation and due diligence including seeking and receiving professional advice on potential environmental liabilities. The site was acquired by a legal trust established by McMaster for the specific purpose of holding the land. The Park has been established as an arms-length entity operated by an incorporated trustee with an independent board of directors.
Throughout 2005 and 2006, a program of demolition and site reclamation was carried out. Three buildings remain on site. 175 Longwood Road South which is the former main office building with attached manufacturing/light industrial space, 270 Longwood Road South which is a warehouse facility of approximately 170,000 sq. ft. and the old central heating plant. At the same time, a conceptual master plan for future development was prepared by a team led by Diamond and Schmitt Architects. The team included engineering, environmental, municipal planning and zoning consultants and was supported by legal advisors. As part of this work, several costing studies were undertaken with respect to 175 Longwood Road South to attempt to ascertain the feasibility of renovating this property which included the main office building of about 50,000 sq. ft. and adjoining manufacturing facilities of an additional 130,000 sq. ft. Decisions have been reached to redevelop 175 Longwood, and to leave in place the warehouse facility on the west side of the property which as been leased out. The heating plant is being left “as is” for now.
2007 was a year of organizational development and detailed planning and design. Over the course of the year, staff has been hired, business processes put in place, bank accounts opened and financial accounting and management systems established. Governance relationships between the board and management as well as with the beneficial owner, McMaster University have been established. Detailed planning and design for the first major project, the re-development of 175 Longwood Road South (the red brick building) was completed and a $20M construction program began. Significant developmental work was carried out on a number of other projects including most notably the CANMET-MTL lab relocation from Ottawa.
Innovation, Park, Architects, buildings, site, advice, environmental, liabilities, manufacturing, facilities, warehouse, CANMET, MTL, lab, space, construction, arms, length, Office Leasing, Incubator, Laboratories, design, modular, nanotechnology, Outdoor, Food Court
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