On Campus

Waterloo breaks ground on $160 mil Quantum-Nano Centre

Housing both nano and quantum researchers in the same building will be a first

Construction began yesterday at the University of Waterloo on the $160 million Quantum-Nano Centre, named after Research in Motion co-founder and Waterloo chancellor Mike Lazaridis and his wife Ophelia.

The new centre will be home to the Institute for Quantum Computing, the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology, and an undergraduate program in nanotechnology engineering. Housing both quantum and nanotechnology researchers in the same building will be a unique opportunity, as no other nano or quantum centres in the world have direct access to each other.

“This is an exciting time for science and the University of Waterloo,” Lazaridis said in a release. “In addition to housing state-of-the-art research labs, this new building will provide a unique and cutting-edge environment that will bring together the brightest minds in basic and applied research to explore and advance quantum computing and nanotechnology.”

Ontario is investing $18 million into the project. Premier Dalton McGuinty made the announcement Monday at the groundbreaking ceremony. McGuinty says the money will help the centre buy new research equipment.

The five-storey, 900-square-metre building is expected to be completed by 2011.

Construction company Aecon Group Inc. (TSX:ARE) has won a $130-million contract to build the new building at the University of Waterloo, the company said Monday. The 280,000-square-foot building, funded in part by a donation by Lazaridis, will include fabrication facilities for quantum and nano devices, an advanced metrology suite, teaching and research laboratories, seminar rooms and offices.

Lazaridis also announced a $50 million donation to the Perimetre Institute last week.

-with a report from CP 

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