Humanities Centre will reopen later this year

The university is moving forward with plans to reopen the building in the coming months.

8 March 2024

As crews continue to work on remediating the Humanities Centre after the electrical vault fire in December 2023, the university is moving forward with plans to reopen the building later this year.

Reopening is currently expected to occur after the end of Winter 2024 term. No final exams will be held in the Humanities Centre. Locations of final exams will be proactively communicated.

The U of A is committed to the safety of our university community above all else. The building will not be reopened until it is deemed safe to occupy. Priority is being given to reopening classrooms.

For latest updates on the Humanities Centre’s reopening, watch for emails from your college and faculty leadership.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the timeline for reopening the building?
The exact schedule will be finalized in the coming months. Progress on the cleanup to date indicates that it may be sometime between May and September 2024.
What is the progress for the electrical repairs?
Depending on the lead time for replacement components, repairing the electrical vault will occur in autumn 2024 or early winter 2025. The building will continue to operate on its current temporary power supply until this work is completed.
When will I know more about my office space?
The College and Faculty Deans are working with Facilities and Operations to review current office assignments to ensure alignment with current space guidelines and future plans for the Humanities Centre. Information will come directly from your College or Faculty contacts.
Will everyone be returning to the same space(s) they had before?

As part of the university’s commitment to using its spaces as effectively and efficiently as possible, leadership from within the Faculty of Arts, the College of Social Sciences and the Humanities, and Facilities and Operations are working to reoccupy the building in accordance with current guidelines (Space Management Overview, 2020) and in alignment with current policies and procedures (the Space Management Policy and related procedures on UAPPOL, and the Space Management - Interim Guidance Memo, dated February 8, 2024). This means that some people may be assigned different spaces for offices within the Humanities Centre, or that alternate locations may be identified for affiliated units.

This standardized approach following guidelines may also mean some people may no longer have a dedicated office in the Humanities Centre. In the coming weeks, more information will come from Faculty and College leadership to those impacted by these changes.

Will the Humanities Centre remain open indefinitely?
The building’s eventual trajectory remains unchanged. As mentioned in the university’s 2022-2023 capital plan, the university plans to bring the Faculty of Arts into more co-located and consolidated spaces (currently spread over nine buildings), eventually resulting in the decanting (vacating) of the building. Other buildings are being considered for redevelopment to appropriately accommodate the College of Social Sciences and Humanities. Find more information on capital plans and space strategies here.