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CMU invites community to celebrate the grand opening of Marpeck Commons

We are honoured to open this spectacular space,’ says university president

Canadian Mennonite University will celebrate the grand opening of Marpeck Commons, CMU’s new library, learning commons, and bridge, on Saturday, November 29.

The public is invited to join CMU staff, faculty, and students at 2299 Grant Ave. for the grand opening celebration from 1:30 PM to 2:15 PM. An open house is scheduled for 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

MCbanner“We are honoured to open this spectacular space to the university community and the communities surrounding CMU,” says CMU President Cheryl Pauls. “Marpeck Commons will be the hub of the campus and of a vibrant learning community. It’s a great place for formal and informal gathering, and we’re excited about the quality of conversation and study that will happen there.”

Pauls adds that the bridge offers coherence to the CMU campus by providing students, staff, and guests a safe and accessible way across Grant Ave.

Central to Marpeck Commons is the library. The library is vital to CMU’s effectiveness in connecting students with one another and with the expertise and mentoring of faculty, librarians, and staff.

“CMU’s capacity to connect students with one another and with faculty, librarians, staff, and surrounding communities enables the university to live out its mission of inspiring and equipping women and men for lives of service, leadership, and reconciliation in church and society,” Pauls says.

Vic Froese, Library Director, is excited to see the library open. “It will invite students and others to come to a place where we have a fine collection of good resources and resourcing expertise,” Froese says.

Marpeck Commons also houses CommonWord, a book and resource centre created in partnership with Mennonite Church Canada that will allow users to buy, borrow, and download a wide range of resources, as well as a coffee and snack bar called Folio Café.

Marpeck Commons is named after Pilgram Marpeck, a 16th century Anabaptist leader and civil engineer whose writings emphasize Christian love, the pursuit of peace, and active pursuit of justice before God and among all people.

Designed by ft3 and constructed under the direction of Concord Projects, Marpeck Commons includes a range of environmentally conscious and energy-saving initiatives that have been integrated into both the interior and exterior construction.

See the construction of Marpeck Commons from beginning to end (photo album)
See the construction of Marpeck Commons from beginning to end (photo album)

The Commons lies on a designated Manitoba Heritage site, between two Winnipeg treasures: Assiniboine Park and a large urban forest. The site design of the CMU campus complements these green city spaces.

Construction on the project began in July 2013, funded by the CONNECT fundraising campaign under the leadership of Campaign Chair Elmer Hildebrand, CEO of Golden West Broadcasting. To date, $13-million has been committed toward the campaign’s $14.4-million goal.

Immediately following the grand opening program on November 29, the public is invited to Christmas at CMU at 2:30 PM and 7:00 PM. Create your own concert with family, friends, and neighbours while enjoying music, festive décor, cookies, and hot apple cider. Admission is free.

In addition to the grand opening, media are invited to an open house on Friday, November 28 from 10:00 AM to 12:00 PM. Members of the media will have the opportunity to tour Marpeck Commons with Pauls and other CMU personnel on hand to answer questions.

About CMU
A Christian university in the Anabaptist tradition, CMU’s Shaftesbury campus offers undergraduate degrees in arts, business, humanities, music, sciences and social sciences, and graduate degrees in Theology and Ministry. CMU has over 1,600 students, including those enrolled in degree programs at the Shaftesbury Campus and in its Menno Simons College and Outtatown programs.

For information about CMU, visit:

For additional information, please contact:

Kevin Kilbrei, Director of Communications & Marketing; 204.487.3300 Ext. 621
Canadian Mennonite University
500 Shaftesbury Blvd., Winnipeg, MB  R3P 2N2