Saskatoon, SK

University of Saskatchewan, Agriculture & Agri-Food Canada Research Station Expansion

Project Details


$25 Million (1995 dollars)




69,137 sq. ft.


Prime Consulting, Architecture, Interior Design, Construction Contract Administration

aodbt, in collaboration with DIALOG, embarked on a significant expansion project for the Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Research Station located on the University of Saskatchewan campus in January 1995. This expansion was completed in two phases, with four separate tender packages spanning over a year and a half. The approach aimed to align with client schedules, construction seasons, and minimize disruption to the research station.

The first phase, known as the Scientific Support Wing, extended northward from the original Lab Wing and introduced essential components such as public reception and display areas, offices, meeting rooms, a library, staff facilities, and a computer center. The second phase was a more comprehensive expansion, featuring a header house with general laboratories, two Level 3 containment laboratories, spaces for hazardous material receiving, storage, and dispensing, six greenhouses, a Phytotron, a spray technology center, and loading facilities. A notable inclusion in this phase was the Plant Genetic Resource Canada (PGRC) center, serving as Canada’s seed gene bank and enriching Saskatoon’s research capabilities.

In this multifaceted project, aodbt led the design efforts and orchestrated the coordination of numerous traditional and specialist consultants located across Canada. DIALOG brought expertise in laboratory and greenhouse design to the table. Given the project’s complexity and diverse requirements, a roster of specialist consultants was also engaged, covering areas such as greenhouse expertise, controls, quantity surveying, geotechnical considerations, security, display, value engineering, risk management, sun/window/snow studies, electrical systems analysis, and energy efficiency assessments. The design prioritized flexibility within laboratory spaces to accommodate changing research needs, and the exterior design harmoniously blended the new additions with the existing station architecture to align with the University of Saskatchewan’s guidelines, with the curved facade of the Scientific Support Wing reflecting the property’s line at Campus Drive.