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King's' mini quad in full bloom

The courtyard that sits in front of the Link and behind North Pole Bay, was beautified this summer. Thanks to a King’s benefactor, that small patch of grass has been reinvigorated with flowers, ornamental grasses, and a circle of benches – perfect for an outdoor tutorial session.

 

An aerial view of the new garden in King’s’ mini quad. (Photo: Evan McIntyre)

So there’s a garden in the mini quad.
The courtyard that sits in front of the Link and behind North Pole Bay, was beautified this summer. Thanks to a King’s benefactor, that small patch of grass has been reinvigorated with flowers, ornamental grasses, and a circle of benches – perfect for an outdoor tutorial session.
The yet-to-be-named garden was created to honour the legacy of Roy Willwerth, the architect who designed King’s Library, Academic Building, and the Link.
“He had originally intended when he designed the New Academic Building and The Link that there would be a garden in what we call the mini quad,” said Adriane Abbott, King’s Advancement director.
Early designs for that space have existed since the NAB was being built. The original design called for a gate and a rain fed fountain. It was realized creating a gate would be unfeasible, and a fountain would require maintenance the school couldn’t provide.
“There was a committee struck that consisted of staff, students, and faculty,” said Abbott, “There was an open discussion about the space and we kept as close to the original design as possible.”
So, designs for a fountain were replaced a ‘fountain of knowledge’ so to speak – a circle of benches, to be used for group/tutorial discussion.
The plants in the garden were chosen for their hardiness in shaded areas, because they’re located under the shadows of three different buildings. Unfortunately, a few of the plants aren’t thriving as well as others.
“The director of facilities (Alex Doyle) is working with the company who supplied the plants to figure out some of the deficiencies so the whole thing will look more robust next year,” said Abbott.
The garden hasn’t had an official opening or naming event yet, however the Advancement office is looking to hold an event this October.
On Aug. 5, the Wardroom was open and for many students, it was their first introduction to the new space. A few students ended up smoking in the area, which is near the Wardroom’s exit.
The following morning, the King’s community mailing list received an email from director of facilities Alex Doyle about the space.

“It should be noted that smoking is strictly prohibited within this area.”

– Alex Doyle, director of facilities, in an email to the King’s community

“As we near completion of the Willwerth Garden project within the area formerly referred to as the mini quad, it should be noted that smoking is strictly prohibited within this area,” Doyle wrote.
“I just very much hope it’s an area (students) respect both in the day and in the evening,” said Abbott, “There is an element of gift and legacy to the students and to our campus by a family, and specifically a member of that family who spent a great deal of their career considering and beautifying our spaces and our environment. I hope it is treated as a memorial garden and with respect.”

Some of the flowers in the new garden in King’s’ mini quad. (Photo: Evan McIntyre)

By David J. Shuman

David is a second-year journalism student at King's, is engagement/news editor of The Watch, and a copy editor of The Pigeon. He writes on student politics, campus happenings, and school news. 

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