November 15th, 2020:

Beaux Arts Architecture in Ontario – Top 17 Picks

Beaux Arts Architecture in Ontario

Beaux Arts: Promoters of this style sought to express the classical principles on a grand and imposing scale. Many of the Beaux Arts buildings were banks, post offices, and railway stations. The Ontario Beaux Arts style is eclectic mixing elements of Classical, Renaissance and Baroque. Often the designs have a temple-like facade, porticoes with pediments, balustrades, and capitals in many styles.

This neoclassical style is named for the French School of Architecture – l’Ecole des Beaux-Arts – that had a great impact on architecture during the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th century. Beaux-Arts architecture employs balance and symmetry and a hierarchy of spaces – from “noble spaces,” such as grand entrances and staircases, to utilitarian ones of increasing privacy. Beaux-Arts buildings are often grand and ornate, but always exhibit clarity of form and are decorated with classical elements such as columns. In Ontario, the Beaux-Arts style was most prominently used for civic buildings.

Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Belleville Book 4 – 366 North Front Street at Campbell Street – Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce – Beaux Arts style – engaged columns with Doric capitals, voussoirs and keystones

Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Cambridge – Galt Book 2 – 34 Water Street – Galt Public Library – 1903 – Beaux Arts style with pillars topped with capitals, triangular pediment with three acroterions, and the tympanum decorated with a Renaissance wreath surrounding an open library book; dentil molding. The cornice over the door has a central acroterion as well as two acroterions on the corners.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Cayuga – 1 Cayuga Street North
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Hamilton Book 1 – 55 Main Street West – Hamilton Public Library was constructed in 1913 in the Beaux Arts style with pillars, dentil molding under cornice. It served as the main library for 67 years. Refurbished in 1989 to house the Unified Family Court.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Kitchener Book 2 – Wilfrid Laurier University building – Beaux Arts style
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
New Hamburg Book 1 – 145 Huron Street – New Hamburg Public Library – Beaux Arts/Classical Revival style
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Orangeville Book 2 – The decorative stonework on the Broadway and Mill Street facades is a hallmark of the Beaux-Arts Classicism style with the use of columns
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Perth – 77 Gore Street East (corner of Basin Street) – The McMillan Building – 1907 – former Carnegie Library – Beaux Arts style – pediments, pilasters with composite capitals, elaborate keystones
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Port Colborne Book 1 – 212-214 West Street – Constructed in 1911, the Imperial Bank of Commerce has a terracotta exterior and is in the Beaux Arts style. There is a dominant cornice and arched windows.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Port Hope Book 2 – 175 Dorset Street West – David Smart House (The Hillcrest) – c. 1870 – This house is the only example of “Beaux Arts” architecture in Port Hope. An addition to the house was made around 1900 which consists of the large Jeffersonian portico on the north. This massive two and a half-story structure is held by fluted columns with large Corinthian capitals, the main original portion of the house is hipped roof section with two polygonal wings at each end. This section sports beautiful Palladian dormers, bracketed eaves and a grand verandah. The house was built for David Smart, a barrister and notary public who married Emily A. Worts of Gooderham and Worts Distilleries of Toronto. Smart became a director of that distillery.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Sault Ste. Marie – 420 Queen Street East – Ministry of the Attorney General Court House was completed in 1922 in the Beaux Arts Classical style. It shows fine workmanship, good material and attention to details. The imposing, symmetrical, three-story structure is built of orange-brown stone and brick. It is set back from the street on an elevated site and approached by a circular driveway. Its temple front facade consists of Ionic columns supporting a brick pediment.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Smiths Falls – 81 Beckwith Street North – Smiths Falls Public Library – 1903 – Beaux Arts style, Ionic pillars supporting pediment with decorated tympanum and decorative cornice; corner quoins
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
St. Marys Book 1 – 15 Church Street North – 1905 – Beaux Arts style, Public Library built of St. Marys limestone – pediment with dentil molding, pillars with Corinthian capitals
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Thunder Bay Book 4 (Fort William) – 440 South Syndicate Avenue – Built in 1911 as a union station by the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) and the Grand Trunk Pacific Railway (GTPR), the station served as a passenger terminal and as administrative headquarters for the vast grain-handling facilities that were the foundation of the community. Union Station is a good example of Beaux-Arts design applied to a railway station. Notable architectural features include a projecting central bay with stone quoins and two wheat sheaves carved in Bedford stone, an arched entrance with a transom light, and projecting end bays with pilasters topped with decorative elements.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Tillsonburg – 88 Bidwell Street – St. Paul’s United Church
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Waterloo Book 2 – 227 King Street South – The head office of The Mutual Life Assurance Company of Canada (now head office of Sun Life Financials’ Canadian operations) was completed in 1912. The Renaissance Revival style building is ornamented with features such as the two-story fluted paired Ionic columns supporting a large segmental arch above the main doors, elaborate window surrounds, and a parapet with a balustrade. It is clad in light brown and yellow Roman brick, and embellished with projecting pedimented bays and quoins. Many of the decorative details on the facade are made from imported English terracotta. Situated within a Beaux Arts designed landscape, the building is a unique and iconic corporate pavilion. The monumental scale of the building and its rich ornamentation symbolize the importance and stability of Waterloo’s first life insurance company and reflect the town’s early twentieth century prosperity and sense of civic pride.
Beaux Arts Architectural Photos, Ontario
Woodstock Book 3 – 445 Hunter Street – Public Library – built in 1909 – Beaux-Arts Classicism style – brick, stucco on details such as quoins, columns, portico, Corinthian order columns with flutes, formed metal cornice, flat roof, Carnegie library