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A map to the federal Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund

As SIF-funded projects wind down, a look at where the funding was distributed by project, institution and province.

By NATALIE SAMSON | AUG 15 2018

Remember the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund? Announced as part of the 2016 federal budget, the $2-billion funding initiative offered short-term investment in infrastructure projects already in progress at universities, colleges and CEGEPs across the country. To qualify, a project had to improve “the environmental sustainability of research and innovation-related infrastructure,” “the scale or quality of facilities for research and innovation,” or “improve the scale or quality of facilities for specialized training at colleges.” Federal funds cover up to 50 percent of eligible costs so projects were also expected to have financial backing from provincial or territorial governments, and other sources such as municipal governments, industry partners or private donors.

Projects funded through the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund, or SIF, were expected to be completed by April 30 of this year, however the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Economic Development has conditionally extended the deadline to Nov. 30.

With many of the projects finished – or near finished – University Affairs decided to take a look at where SIF funding has gone. The icons on the map below represent each postsecondary institution that received SIF funding. Click on an icon to learn more about that institution’s SIF-funded projects.

See a larger version of the map

SIF by the numbers

Some 299 projects have been funded through SIF at 63 universities and 99 colleges, CEGEPs and polytechnics. Université de Montréal received $131.4 million through SIF, the most funding for any institution. It also received the largest single-project commitment – more than $84.2 million for the construction of a science complex at its Outremont campus, estimated to cost more than $348 million total. The University of Toronto was a close second on both counts – it was approved for more $83.7 million total SIF funding, all of it for the Lab Innovation for Toronto project.

University of Calgary ($78.2 million), McGill University ($70.7 million) and the University of Alberta ($56.2 million) complete the top-five list for highest total funding for an institution.

On the provincial level, Ontario received the most funding with more than $783 million for 71 projects across 50 institutions. Quebec received over $384 million for 99 projects at 47 universities, colleges and CEGEPs. British Columbia was the third-highest recipient province with more than $253 million for 30 projects at 22 institutions and affiliated research centres.

The full breakdown by province:

  • Alberta, $234,621,119 for 49 projects at 16 institutions
  • British Columbia, $253,526,490 for 30 projects at 22 institutions
  • Manitoba, $77,748,408 for seven projects at five institutions
  • New Brunswick, $48,750,979 for eight projects at five institutions
  • Newfoundland and Labrador, $33,356,059 for five projects at two institutions
  • Northwest Territories, $10,596,046 for two projects at Aurora College
  • Nova Scotia, $131,300,121 for six projects at four institutions
  • Nunavut, $10,638,380 for one project at Nunavut Arctic College
  • Ontario, $783,926,635 for 71 projects at 50 institutions
  • Prince Edward Island, $10,416,981 for eight projects at two institutions
  • Quebec, $384,810,991 for 99 projects at 47 institutions
  • Saskatchewan, $65,132,152 for 10* projects at seven institutions
  • Yukon, $1,528,544 for two projects at Yukon College

Project reporting should be finished by February or March 2019 – in time for the next federal election. Additional information on individual projects is available through the SIF website.

*An earlier version of this article listed 11 SIF-funded projects in Saskatchewan. After this article was published, ISED confirmed that one project out of the three originally announced at the University of Saskatchewan in 2016 had been cancelled. The funds were reallocated to other projects in the province.

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  1. Dr Bruno Battistini / August 15, 2018 at 12:15

    Well done and very informative; I would add the investment ratio on a per capita basis as a table. Thank you. Follow-up on each project in the coming months to present them and completion and job and trainee creation.

  2. M / August 16, 2018 at 11:24

    It would be good to know each budget ended up. As many know, the original substantial completion deadline for these projects was end-April, 2018. Now pushed back this means contractors and consultants are mostly due additional fees. And further, the influx of major capital meant construction inflation, so many projects either needed to be scoped down to meet the original budget, or additional funding needed to be secured.

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