Ontario government invests in rural development centre

Archived Release

Ontario government invests in rural development centre

Ridgetown College Expansion To Offer New Bio-Resource Management Program RIDGETOWN, ON, Oct. 18 - The Ontario government is building strong, rural communities by investing in the completion of the Rudy H. Brown Rural Development Centre at Ridgetown College, Leona Dombrowsky, Minister of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs announced today. "The McGuinty government is pleased to contribute to this state-of-the- art facility that will further enhance Ridgetown College's commitment to excellence in agricultural education and to the prosperity of rural Ontario," said Minister Dombrowsky. "This new centre will provide much-needed space so that the college can deliver innovative new programs, such as the Bachelor of Bio-Resource Management degree program, for the benefit of our students and our communities." The government is investing $1 million through ReNew Ontario, its five- year, $30 billion infrastructure investment plan, to complete the centre. This funding is in addition to the province's allocation of $2.5 million in 2004. This complements the efforts of the Ridgetown College Agri-Food Foundation, which has raised half of the total funding needed for this project. When completed, the centre will include classrooms, a lecture theatre, office and administration space to accommodate Ridgetown College's increasing enrollment while newly created community space will be used to host local events. "This is another excellent example of the value of the partnership between OMAFRA and the University of Guelph," said University of Guelph President Alastair Summerlee. "We are striving to find new and innovative ways to meet the needs of rural Ontario, and the development centre will offer leading-edge education and outreach programs. Government commitment is vital to the project. We are hopeful that this latest investment will allow the University to facilitate additional support from the private sector." "In addition to the advantages this facility will bring to Ontario's broader rural and educational communities, there are also welcome benefits to this region's economy," said Chatham-Kent-Essex MPP Pat Hoy. "The construction of this facility will help create construction jobs, and once completed, the centre will also be host to additional teaching and administrative positions." The government has allocated $24 million towards the agri-food sector under ReNew Ontario. Disponible en fran├žais www.OMAFRA.gov.on.ca www.ontarioconserves.gov.on.caFor further information: Contact: Kelly Synnott, Minister's Office, (416) 326-6439