Plenty of nods to department store roots at new Fanshawe College campus

A mixology room, where students will learn all aspects of beverage service. (Including bartending personality, and how to make more tips.). Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL

Fanshawe College is welcoming students into its newest downtown building next week, but it’s also inviting people on a journey into the past.

The new home of the college’s School of Information and Technology, and the School of Tourism, Hospitality and Culinary Arts used to be London’s much-loved Kingsmill’s department store that closed in 2014 after 148 years in operation.

The college’s president, Peter Devlin, led media on a tour through the 130 Dundas Street building on Monday afternoon, explaining its many different labs and its nods to the building’s history.

“We have the facade of the Kingsmill’s store out front, [and] we have many of the bricks that have been restored and put back into our walls,” explained Devlin.
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The yellow brick adorns the western wall of the student-run restaurant that’ll be open to the public later in the year, named “The Chef’s Table.” The restaurant, the apparel store and a few other spaces on the ground floor also have the Kingsmill’s old tin ceiling, while the main entranceway features its old wooden beams.

There will be 1,600 students attending classes at the new building starting next week.

Meet Wilf, the Kingsmill`s top furniture salesman who was memorialized on an 800-lb fright elevator door. This piece now lives on the bottom floor of the building. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
Do you remember the pneumatic tube system? It was used to exchange sale bills, receipts, and cash between the department store's floors. It lives on, on the second floor. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
The tin ceiling has been preserved in many spaces of the ground floor. You'll see it here in the apparel store, but also in the student restaurant. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
A relic of the old Kingsmill's building is this old safe, which is rumoured to have fallen through into the basement floor once. That's why Fanshawe College is keeping it on the basement floor. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
Another lab on the culinary floor; this one is a savoury lab. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
A pastry lab on the third floor, also known as the Spriet Family Culinary Centre. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
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A two-storey living wall with more than 200 plants, just inside of the Dundas Street entrance. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
Peter Gilbert, Chief Infrastructure Officer at Fanshawe College, shows off the old Kingsmill's elevator that he remembers as a boy. It's now the changeroom at the apparel store. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
An information technology lab, which looks out over downtown London facing north. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL
An ampitheatre, which stretches from the ground floor into a spacious basement floor. There's also a golf simulator, and another kitchen on the lowest level. Liny Lamberink/980 CFPL



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