6 février 2012
( mise à jour : 6 février 2012 )
« It may not let you forget all your troubles and cares, as Petula Clark once sang, but going downtown is proving popular for many universities.
André Capaldi was in a sea of young people in downtown Windsor, Ontario, on an early September evening last year as he looked out at the transit buses arriving with yet another flood of students making their way to the riverfront Festival Plaza. Some 10,000 people came to the Coming Home Music Fest, the largest gathering ever at the plaza and one of the biggest frosh-week parties in the country.
Mr. Capaldi, president of the University of Windsor Students’ Alliance, had come up with the idea for an electronic music festival featuring stars like Benny Benassi and Richie Hawtin. The crowd included not just U of Windsor students but also a large contingent from St. Clair College and other young people from the community. Mr. Capaldi partnered with St. Clair because he recognized students in downtown Windsor had reached critical mass, with the college already established there and the university planning an ambitious expansion of its own into the city centre.
Mario Polèse, who holds the Canada Research Chair in Urban and Regional Studies at Université du Quebec’s Institut national de la recherche scientifique, knows first-hand the important role a campus plays in an urban core. In 1965, Université Laval moved out of downtown Quebec City and into the suburbs.
« The impact on the downtown was incredible. The whole place collapsed, » says Dr. Polèse, who studied at the suburban campus. Since then, the university has started moving back downtown and « it’s working fairly well, but the damage has been done ». »
University Affairs / Affaires universitaires
Parution : 6 février 2012 [édition en ligne]
Journaliste : Claudio D’Andrea