The on-again, off-again plans to move the University of Windsor’s Faculty of Law to the downtown Windsor Paul Martin building are permanently off the table, according to the university’s interim president.

Douglas Kneale made the announcement this week – with plans instead to renovate the existing Ron. W. Ianni law building to better facilitate programs and future needs of the faculty.

“We can now move forward decisively to choose an architect who will create a state-of-the-art facility for Law in the 21st century,” Dr. Kneale said. “I am confident that the iconic Ron W. Ianni Faculty of Law Building will be brilliantly transformed to meet the needs of our students, staff, and faculty for decades to come.”

The previous Ontario Liberal government had promised to provide $20 million to help move 700 faculty, staff and students into the federally owned Paul Martin Building on Ouellette Avenue. The city had been trying to attract government help for the past five to six years, even putting $15 million on the table to make it work. The feds spent a couple million dollars recently renovating the exterior façade to remove scaffolding from the historic building.

But a recent announcement by the Ford PC government that the province would no longer be allocating money for the project shelved the move once again. For the university, this was the last time.

The University of Windsor will now re-engage the successful proponent of a process to reimagine and fix-up the existing facility.

“I can’t wait for us to get started,” says Faculty of Law dean Chris Waters. “I look forward to the input and support of students, staff, faculty, and alumni in 2019.”

Pending approval from the University’s Board of Governors, construction could begin as early as the summer of 2019 and completed in time for the start of the fall 2021 semester.