Capilano University buys Squamish waterfront land for new campus

Mar 21 2022, 8:33 pm

A two-acre central waterfront property in Squamish has been acquired by Capilano University for the purpose of building a satellite campus.

The university has announced it has bought the parcel for $5 million from Matthews Southwest’s Oceanfront Squamish development.

Planning for the project is still in the very early stages, but the university states this will be a “purpose-built hub of higher education.” As well, the timing of the agreement allows the university to choose its preferred two-acre parcel located within the 100-acre, mixed-use development.

The university is also exploring a financing plan to conduct improvements to the bordering foreshore area, and establish new road connections to enable access to the property.

oceanfront squamish

Artistic rendering of the Oceanfront Squamish development. (Matthews Southwest)

oceanfront squamish

Artistic rendering of the Oceanfront Squamish development. (Matthews Southwest)

“This is an exciting step forward towards realizing our priority of delivering relevant high-quality educational programming in Squamish, for the benefit of communities along the Sea-to-Sky corridor,” said Paul Dangerfield, president of Capilano University.

“Education is an integral part of any thriving community. We believe that our range of programs and commitment to strong community partnerships makes for an excellent foundation for CapU’s return to Squamish.”

The long-planned Oceanfront Squamish development, located on a peninsula that was home to major industrial uses, will be an extension of downtown Squamish. There will be 2,500 new homes for 6,500 residents, as well as retail, office, creative industrial, and educational/institutional spaces for 2,500 jobs. It will be constructed over multiple phases spanning 20 years.

oceanfront squamish

Artistic rendering of the Oceanfront Squamish development, with the Oceanfront Park features depicted. (Matthews Southwest)

oceanfront squamish

Artistic rendering of the Oceanfront Squamish development, with the Oceanfront Park features depicted. (Matthews Southwest)

Ample public spaces are planned, including the 11-acre Oceanfront Park, which began construction last year, and 14 acres of additional public spaces.

Capilano University’s main campus is located in North Vancouver District, and it also has three other satellite campuses — located on the Sunshine Coast, Mount Currie (near Pemberton), and most recently at The Shipyards on the Lonsdale waterfront in North Vancouver City. It has an enrolment of 11,600 students.

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