Recent Articles From – PRECISION – Le journaldu CMR – The RMC Newspaper
Ed: Over the past year RMC cadets have been producing their own PRECISION – a modern day high quality and very professional version of “The Marker” and “The Arch” – RMC cadet newspapers from the past.
PRECISION – Le journaldu CMR – The RMC Newspaper is only available internally at RMC. With the kind permission of the PRECISION Editor, 24369 III Nicolas St-Amant,
from time-to-time, we will reprint some of the articles that we feel would be of interest to Ex cadets..
This week we have chosen three excellent articles written by cadets from recent editions, during first term:
Fort Haldimand: 50 years later
24369 III Nicolas St-Amant
Saturday could not have been a nicer day for the three squadrons and HQ personnel who moved into the newly renovated Fort Haldimand. The sun beat down on the inner field, shining through the crystal-clear windows of the old Fort, which has been home to over forty generations of aspiring officers. Moving conditions were perfect as the temperature was warm enough for moving furniture and boxes but cool enough so that the 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th years who began working as early as 7 am hardly broke a sweat.
As Seen in Architectural Digest.
Not wanting to bother everyone when most of the work was done, I decided to take a tour of Haldimand soon after lunch to see the progress and shoot a few pictures. For those of you who haven’t set foot in the building yet, I can only say that Haldimanders will make the rest of us green with envy.
The Fort is simply gorgeous… The hallways are warm and colourful with tones of light yellow, indigo and amber. The rooms themselves are spacious: the furniture is similar to that of Sauvé, the walls are painted in blue and beige, the window sills are made of stone, and the sink area looks like that of a hotel room.
And then there are the bathrooms: imagine Lasalle-style tiled shower stalls mixed with Sauvé single bathrooms, a touch of Stone Frigate avant-garde and an abundance of retro glass blocks, chrome fixtures and ample mirrors. In addition to the refined interior design, the views offered by the rooms on the outer perimeter of the building are simply breathtaking. Instead of looking at the rear wall of LaSalle, or having an orchestra view of some guy changing in Sauvé, Haldimanders look over Fort Frederick, the Inner Field, the SSM and Old Gym.
The 401 now open
The opening of Haldimand means that, for the first time in three years, the trans-RMC highway (commonly known as the 401), is now open for North and Southbound traffic. For those who don’t remember their 1st year College Knowledge, the 401 is the hallway that connects the third floors of Fort Lasalle, Yeo Hall and Fort Haldimand – allowing for continuous circulation between four of RMC’s busiest buildings. Furthermore, numerous exit ramps allow cadets to branch off to Fort Champlain and complete a loop that will certainly make cold winter commute to the other dorms a lot more agreeable!
The critics are unanimous
Twenty-four hours, one Western party and an unusually good CDH lunch later (including custom made omelettes, poached eggs and waffles with whipped cream and blueberry sauce), I Brendan Shust interviewed a few Haldimanders.
According to III Kyle Dowd, Haldimand is “better than Lasalle; there’s more room, more closet space, and a better layout.” On the other hand, III Taio Marson mentioned that “it doesn’t feel like we’re living in the 1970’s anymore.” Whereas II Ryan Sullivan found the paint scheme “a bit trippy”, IV Trevor Robinson indicated that the contractors definitely put effort into it.
To be certain, as III Jonathan Lemieux pointed out, Haldimand “doesn’t look like a prison, it’s like a residence.”
For the 1st, 2nd and 3rd years, this past week-end was an occasion to discover for the first time a long-hidden part of the RMC campus. Ever since my first year, Haldimand had been surrounded by a 10-foot high plywood fence barring access to most of the Haldimand-Champlain courtyard and the perimeter of the building.
Over the years, Haldimand earned the legendary status of the no-trespassing ghost-like building that cut Fort Champlain off from the rest of the known world. “Fort Haldimand” was synonymous with tales of Haldibugs, foggy and leaking stairways, pools filled with rotting books and paper-thin walls covered with holes. Not anymore. Like it or not, the Stone Frigate has been overthrown by Fort Haldimand as the ritziest pied-à-terre on the square.
Home Improvements “Worth the Wait”
24941 I Brendan Shust
OCdt Shust visited Fort Haldimand and Fort Brant in late November 2007, a month and a half before they were officially open. The intent was to publish these articles in mid-December, but with everyone caught up in finals, we decided to publish the article in January. Here is an account of the exclusive tour given by the contractor.
When Fort Haldimand was constructed in 1949, it was considered to be the ultimate in student living. With comfortable rooms, modern conveniences and even a pool, any RMC cadet of the day would have been happy to call it home.
Fast forward to 2004, and it was a very different story. Even now, three years later, first year students are regaled with legends of Haldimand; rain in the stairwells due to leaky steam pipes, walls so badly deteriorated you could see right through them and, of course, the infamous Haldibug.
And so, badly in need of repairs, Fort Haldimand was closed down to begin extensive renovations and reconstruction. Construction also began on a completely new building, New Dorm 2. Now, after years of hard work, both Fort Haldimand and New Dorm 2 are nearly ready to become home to RMC students.
There’s been a lot of talk over the past few years on what exactly has been done to Haldimand, and what the plans are for New Dorm 2. But as the new residents of these buildings get ready for the move, there’s one question they’re probably wondering about:
What’s my new place going to be like?
To find out, we spoke with Mr. Dominic O’Neill, the civilian Project Support Officer, to find out a bit more about what students can expect from their new accommodations. OCdt Doubrough (IV) was also kind enough to arrange a tour of both buildings. And we were impressed!
Walking through Fort Haldimand, one would think that it’s an entirely new building. Everything looks brand new, from the walls and flooring to the furniture. The structure itself has been improved to meet current building codes, including the addition of an elevator to allow for improved accessibility. The original front staircase has been fully restored and the stairwells in the building wings have been moved to more accessible locations in order to meet fire codes. The construction of the interior walls has been changed in order to improve the soundproofing between rooms. (This will be greatly appreciated by senior cadets next September as new first year students are roused by the strains of ‘O Fortuna’.)
Another item that’s sure to be appreciated as the winter sets in the completely new heating system that’s been installed. Each room has its own thermostat, and the system is setup in such a way that fresh air is mechanically introduced into each room.
But Haldimand residents won’t be the only ones enjoying some of the building improvements. With RMC’s athletic needs being met by the Kingston Military Community Sports Center, the former site of the Haldimand pool has been filled in and divided into two floors. This space will now serve as laundry and storage facilities for both Fort Haldimand and Fort Champlain, including indoor bicycle storage. The lower level of Haldimand will play host to several club rooms, including facilities for the Art Club and for Precision.
New Dorm 2 (tentatively named Fort Brant) will offer many of the same amenities as Haldimand, including modern laundry facilities, plenty of storage space, modern construction and easy access. New Dorm 2 also has several rooms on the ground floor set aside for Otter Squadron, including a study area/computer lab. The building also sports glass-enclosed staircases, which offer fantastic views of the RMC campus.
The biggest difference between New Dorm 2 and Haldimand is the atmosphere. Walking through New Dorm 2 feels a lot like walking through Fort Sauve: the colours, furnishings and facilities all feel very similar. Haldimand, on the other hand, has been designed with a much ‘warmer’ feeling in mind, giving the building a much more comfortable, less institutional air.
What else can students expect from their new homes? Both buildings include:
-‘Mud’ rooms, drying rooms and shoe racks
-Dedicated recycling rooms
-Barrier-free washroom and shower facilities
-In-room Internet and cable TV connections
The tentative plan is for 11 & 12 squadrons to move from Fort Champlain to Fort Haldimand when the building is ready, with 9 squadron moving into New Dorm 2.
In the words of Mr. O’Neill, it will be “Worth the wait”.
What’s the Dress Tomorrow: a New Uniform for RMC
24053 IV Marc Parent
On 17th January 2006, the official report on the dress of the day at RMC was sent up the chain of command towards the DCdts. This report evaluated the uniform no.5 on: history and tradition, self-identification, identification with the CF and cost. The final recommendation was to get rid of the 5’s and adopt the DEUs as the dress of the day with operational dress once or twice a week. The Cmdt at the time (BGen Lacroix) wanted to bring us closer to the rest of the CF and towards the end of that academic year; the 5s were officially retired from the college and moved to the RMC Museum.
Fast forward to mid-October 2007. I received the task by Major MacLean, C Div Comd, of putting together a representative group of OCdts to discuss the dress of the day. One member of every squadron was asked to volunteer and the focus was put on the third year students because they had worn the 5s and they could wear the new dress if it was instituted before next year. The first meeting showed a common interest by everyone; bring back the 5’s but with a few changes. Shortly after the first meeting, the Commandant clarified his intent on this matter: keeping the DEUs is not an option. He wanted us to come up with an analysis on the best possible RMC related dress.
The committee agreed on four possible options. The first one, which was quickly dismissed was to bring back the 6’s (shirt, tie, blazer, grey pants). The second one was to simply bring back the 5’s as they were two years ago. This brought up problems because if we decided to get rid of them, why would we bring them back? This thought led to the following options. The third option was to bring back a variation of the 5’s. We would keep the same CMC pants, white shirts and kepi but instead of the battle blouse, we would design some sort of Canex coat that would be identified to RMC and to the respective squadrons of the cadets. The last option and not the least was a whole new design based on the general pattern from the old dress. The pants would be just like the black navy DEU pants but with a red strip down the side. We would still wear the white shirt in the summer but we would have a black Canex coat once again identified to RMC and squadrons with patches. This coat would permit the barmen to wear their sashes and tassels just like they used to. Finally, the head dress would be a forge cap, black with red elastic. I must mention the fact that III Solar from 10 squadron was greatly helpful in this process by drawing all those ideas down and giving the committee a better perspective on the looks of the dress.
The most recent meeting we had involved Major Von Wiedner (logistics officer), the CWSM, Warrant Murphy from the tailors, Major MacLean, OCdt Sully and myself. This meeting was a fantastic step forward. We all agreed that the last option, the new design, would look very sharp and that it was worth it to take it to the next level. The plan is to have this uniform tailored for one male cadet and one female cadet and shown to the Commandant on the 5th of December. At that point, Brigadier-General Lawson will make his decision whether he likes the dress or not. If he does, pictures and design specifications will be sent to Ottawa for final approval and subvention. Given the attention that the Commandant has shown towards this committee and the actions he already has taken (removal of the chin strap from the kepi), we can only be optimistic that this new uniform would become the official dress of the day at RMC within the next years.
Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race (GNCTR)
RMC will compete in Great Northern Concrete Toboggan Race (GNCTR), January 30 to February 2, 2008 at the Université de Sherbrooke. The GNCTR is an annual event that has challenged the creativity of engineering students since 1974.Background The Great Northern Concrete Toboggan project involves designing and constructing a toboggan with a metal frame and a running surface made completely out of concrete. The sled must weigh less than 300 pounds (136 kg), have a working braking system, and be fitted with a roll bar to protect its five passengers. Each competing team must complete a technical report summarizing the design, which is presented at a public technical exhibition. It is traditional for Race teams to choose a theme for their sled; they often wear appropriate costumes and incorporate elements of the design into their technical exhibit and sled aesthetics. The theme makes up a large part of the spirit and the best uniforms award. Teams are judged for top speed, best run, most improved team, braking, and aesthetics.