Jackman Law Building

The Need

Over the last ten years, three separate external reviews - in 2001, 2006 and 2010 - have identified the physical facilities as the only major threat to the Faculty of Law's success and reputation, both nationally and internationally.

These concerns are echoed by students, who have identified the law school buildings as the #1 cause of student dissatisfaction in each of the past four years.

The current state of the physical plant at U of T law has a serious impact on the delivery of key priorities at the law school:

  • "Solve the building issue, and we are confident that Toronto can continue to build its distinctive voice in the worldwide legal academic community. Failure in this effort would be a setback."

    - External Review, 2010

    Lack of classroom space has become the largest driver for course offerings rather than academic or curricular priorities
  • Space limits student access to professors and courses through restrictions on class size imposed by the lack of flexible classroom space
  • Lack of space inhibits the ability of faculty members to apply for grants, as there is no place to house the resulting projects
  • There is no longer space for new faculty offices, and new faculty members are either forced to share office space, or are shuffled between unoccupied spaces while others are on academic leave
  • Co-curricular program expansion has increased the size of the administrative staff, but without space to house them, much of the program delivery occurs off-site
  • Recent renovations to create more office space have removed public student spaces; student now have fewer opportunities to congregate onsite
  • Student groups are active at the law school, but compete for a limited amount of space for clubs, meetings and events, which limits their activities
  • Space also limits the opportunity for extra-curricular events at the law school, which can dampen both faculty-student interaction and the peer-to-peer experience 
  • Lack of space has a serious impact on opportunities for new programming (both the new GPLLM and ITL programs are faced with limited access to classroom space, with JD courses having priority)

The Design

  • Designed by Toronto firm Hariri Pontarini, the new building has three distinct elements: a new multi-storey wing on Queen's Park Crescent; an extensive interior renovation to the Bora Laskin Law Library; and a light renovation to historic Flavelle House.
  • The new building will increase our space by 50%, adding 66,000 square feet to our campus.  The building is designed to accommodate our existing program, with some room for future growth; it does not contemplate an increase in student enrolment.
  • The design features new classroom, office and student service areas (such as a consolidated office for Career Services, Admissions and Financial Aid).  The Laskin Library, upgraded with current technology and research tools, includes an information commons, quiet areas for reading and research and group study rooms.

The Campaign

  • The campaign launched in November 2011.  At this time, we announced our campaign cabinet and the first set of major gifts to the campaign.
  • The total goal for the campaign is $53 million. 
  • By November 2011, we raised 70% of our fundraising goal.