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Issue No. 180 | September 9, 2011

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Feature Stories

  1. City Begins Process of Protecting Queen
  2. Coach House by George M Miller to be Demolished
  3. Goderich: Heritage Canada Foundation and the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario support heritage recovery efforts in Goderich
  4. CBC: Goderich Tornado Damage
  5. CBC: Video of Goderich Damage
  6. Town of Goderich Emergency Web Site
  7. Touring the Ontario Legislative Assembly with Speaker Peters
  8. Doug Brown's Eden Smith book Online!

Events

2011 Heritage Toronto Awards & William Kilbourn Memorial Lecture
Tuesday, October 4th
+ read


Toronto Architectural Conservancy AGM
September 20, 2011
+ read


Friends of Freeman Station Fundraiser
August 17, 2011
+ read


Workshop - Telling Stories About Heritage: Using Narrative to Build Public Support

+ read


Weston Heritage House Tour
October 16, 2011
+ read


Continuing Education Course: "Toronto: An Architectural History"
Thursdays, Sept. 15 - Dec. 15, 2011 (14 sessions)
+ read


Continuing Education Course: "Architecture: All Around Us"
Tuesdays, Sept. 20 - Nov 8, 2011 (8 sessions)
+ read


Riverdale Historical Society September Event
Tuesday, September 20
+ read


Continuing Education Course: Clay to Capital - The Building of Toronto
Saturdays, Sept. 17 - Oct. 29, 2011 (6 sessions, skipping long weekend)
+ read


Connecting People, Places and Stories:
October 12-15, 2011
+ read


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1. City Begins Process of Protecting Queen
Catherine Nasmith, editor

DTAH/CLR study showing impact of potential tower at Avenue Road and Bloor as seen from Queen and University

Following the OMB decision to permit tall development at 21 Avenue Road, Councillor Wong-Tam asked planning staff to examine means of protecting the silhouette of the Leglslative Assembly building from encroachment from tall buildings behind, more specifically she asked for protection for the “post card view” from College and University Avenue. A report on the matter is going to Toronto East York Community Council on Monday, recommending protection for the postcard view, alone, in the form of an Official Plan Amendment, and indicating that to do that will require height restrictions on a wide cone of properties in a fan shaped area north of Queen’s Park. This report would start a wider process of community consultation over the next few months.

Click here for Planning Report http://app.toronto.ca/tmmis/viewAgendaItemHistory.do?item=2011.TE9.34#.

As readers will be aware, this is an issue that I have been following very closely for The Architectural Conservancy of Ontario (ACO) while President and Past President. Through 2011 a community group has emerged called the Ontario Capital Precinct Working Group (OCPWG0 with varied membership including ACO, different residents groups around Queen’s Park, liaison with Councillor Wong Tam and Vaughan’s offices, MPP Glen Murray, and the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly http://www.ocpwg.ca/

ACO has had research support from urban design consultants DTAH and the Centre for Landscape Research in studying the impact of buildings of various heights at the intersection of Avenue Road and Bloor Street on this silhouette. If not prevented there is potential for a tower to rise directly above the central wing of the LA building that will be clearly visible in the long view from Queen and University, giving Queen's Park the proverbial finger.

http://www.ocpwg.ca/Queen's_Park_height_study_presentation_5.pdf


OCPWG concluded that it is not enough to protect the post card view, that tall buildings north of the Legislative Assembly would have devastating impacts from vantage points further south most notably from the ceremonial approach up University Avenue. Even with 21 Avenue Road in place, there is a large area of silhouette that remains uncompromised and this could and should be left pristine for future generations. Protecting the view from Queen Street is not as difficult as it sounds. Protection for this vantage point impacts far fewer properties because the long views up University Avenue are constrained by the existing buildings on either side of the street, hence it is only buildings directly behind the L.A. that can be seen from further south.

OCPWG has developed a plan for implementing protection and also enhancing the dignity of what we have been calling the Ontario Capital Precinct, Queen’s Park and adjoining properties along University Avenue, and linking to other important civic places such as Nathan Phillips Square and University of Toronto. OCPWG suggests that this larger zone should be protected as a cultural heritage landscape with heritage protection and urban design commensurate with its civic importance and historic significance.


The City and the province were caught with their civic pants down on the 21 Avenue Road application. Even though the Speaker and MPPs Glen Murray, Rosario Marchese and Conservative Culture Critic Ted Arnott have all been pressing for the province to legislate protection, to date McGuinty has been loath to do anything for fear of treading on tender municipal toes. Through the good offices of the local councilors, Wong-Tam and Vaughan there is some movement forward, but it is slow and may not happen quickly enough to deal with impending applications from other property owners.


Much is said in the planning report about the importance of the place and the need to protect the dignifty of our democratic symbols, but the recommended protection falls short of what is possible and what is needed. Nonetheless the report should be welcomed as a positive first step in a longer process.


2. Press Release: National Historic Site to be Dismantled or Demolished for Island Airport Tunnel
Brian Iler

Island Airport photo from press release

For Immediate Release Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Contact: Brian Iler, Chair 416-835-4384 (cell); 4165980054 work direct)

In the latest Island Airport outrage, the Toronto Port Authority plans to dismantle or demolish the historic Airport Terminal Building.

This terminal, designated a National Historic Site, is an impediment to construction of the TPA’s wildly expensive and poorlyjustified pedestrian tunnel.

“Not content with trampling all over Toronto’s prime recreational refuge – its waterfront – with its everincreasing airport traffic, noise and pollution, the TPA now plans to dispense with an important part of our City’s heritage. All just for a slight increase in convenience for Porter Airline’s passengers. We think that’s wrong.” said Brian Iler, Chair, CommunityAIR.

In a report to Toronto City Council last week (found at http://www.toronto.ca/legdocs/mmis/2011/cc/bgrd/backgroundfile-39523.pdf) , City staff stated:

“The Tripartite Agreement includes a provision that addresses the future of the terminal in the event that the TPA determines that it is no longer required for the operation of the airport. In such circumstances, the City is to be given notice and within 180 days of receiving the notice, must decide whether to take over the Building.

“In advance of formally notifying Transportation Canada who, in turn, would issue the official decommissioning letter, the TPA already has advised the City that the Administration Building is no longer appropriate for airport uses and is required to be relocated. In an effort to help expedite the Tripartite Agreement timeframes, the TPA has offered to contribute $ 250,000 toward the cost of preparing, relocating, building a foundation for, and reassembling the building securely to a site that is acceptable to the City and Transport Canada.

“After thorough consideration, City staff has concluded that taking ownership of the building is not in the City's interest, but that the City should assist in efforts to have a third party own and operate the building in a manner consistent with the building's Heritage status.

“Although no final decision has been made on the future of the building, discussions between the Toronto Port Authority, the City and potential partners (i.e. Downsview Park) are on-going and positive. The Term Sheet provides that the parties will commit to continuing to work together cooperatively to find an agreeable solution.

Here’s why the Toronto Island Airport Terminal Building was designated a national historic site of Canada in 1989 

 http://www.historicplaces.ca/en/rep-reg/place-lieu.aspx?id=7530)

- “it is a rare surviving example of air terminal construction dating from the formative years of air passenger travel; and

- “geared to efficiency, it centralized passenger, baggage, and air traffic control services in a structure which was placed close to and in full view of the runway.

“Designed and built by the Toronto Harbour Commission in 1938-9, the Toronto Island Airport Terminal Building was part of the first group of aviation terminals to be funded and approved by the newly formed Department of Transport as part of the development of the federally funded Trans-Canada Airway. It is one of very few early terminal buildings to have survived and is likely the oldest, extant, operating terminal of its kind in Canada.

“The Toronto Island Airport Terminal Building is typical of early airport facilities in its linear design, massing, orientation and the combination of multiple functions within one structure. Its low, rectangular massing, its fenestration and its minimal detailing reveal the influence of the Modern movement. The Terminal Building provided facilities for passenger and baggage handling (including airmail service and customs and immigration processing), as well as for air traffic control and airport administration. Its design and orientation provide unimpeded views of the landing field for both passengers and airport control staff. Its axial plan facilitates the movement of passengers and baggage through the terminal and between air transportation and the ferry slip.”
 


3. Concerns with Centre Pier Task Force report
Chris Wallace

Council should obtain third party review of pier buildings

Re: 'Centre pier buildings on last legs, council hears' ( Northumberland Today, July 28)

The article provided a fair picture of the Centre Pier Task Force report, as presented to Council by chair Paul Evans. However, there are very serious but unreported problems with both the content of the report, and with the way it is being presented to the public. This is not a criticism of the members of the Task Force members, who have worked very hard in good faith. It is very much a criticism of the last-minute 'game-changing' information that was dumped on a Task Force which was well on its way to recommending that the buildings be saved.

Council's recently approved Community Consultation Policy states that for large projects -and the Centre Pier is unarguably a large project -there must be workshops, open houses, formal public meetings to build upon input received thus far, and consultations with advisory committees where appropriate.

The Centre Pier Task Force resolution to council, on the other hand, calls for the report do be made available on the website and in the library for the month of August, when council and many others are away on holiday. On the day after Labour Day, the public consultation process is over. Period. No public meetings. And yet the mayor says that the process outlined for the Task Force report is consistent with the policy.

While the communication process is important, it's the content of the report that is far more critical. The Pier Group is still in the process of preparing a more detailed evaluation of the report, but let me give you a case in point. According to the report, one of the 'last minute surprises' was that remediation of the buildings for adaptive re-use rather than for demolition and recycling, would take many extra millions of dollars and two and a half years more time. This is directly contradicted by Cameco's massive, three-volume Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) which is currently under review by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. In Appendix 'L' of this document, Cameco spell out in quite specific detail the alternative steps to clean the buildings for adaptive re-use, or to clean them for demolition and removal. The

sequence of steps varies somewhat, but the actual cleaning steps are virtually identical. And all at Cameco's cost.

Furthermore, Cameco's official spokesperson Doug Prendergast has stated that "it's mistaken to believe there is a cost saving if the buildings on the Centre Pier are demolished rather than remediated" and that "Cameco still believes that potential cleanup of the Centre Pier Buildings could be accommodated under the current waste delivery schedule for PHAI, and has shared this information with the Task Force."

With massive discrepancies in information like this, Council cannot proceed in good faith to demolish the buildings. And the Task Force, to their credit, did include in their recommendations, the following: "Obtain third party objective review/verification of estimates and time schedules to ensure information regarding impacts of retaining the buildings is accurate". Let's hope that council actually follows this recommendation.

Chris Wallace, The Pier Group Port Hope


4. Coach House by George M Miller to be Demolished
Janet Walters

In the dappled sunlight of a late summer afternoon, it is not hard to imagine the sound of horse hooves clattering on the cobblestones in this courtyard at Isabella and Huntley. The steep-roofed stable that surrounds it on two sides once belonged to the large house at the other end of the block, facing Jarvis Street. Currently, the two properties are once again in the same hands, having been acquired separately by Casey House, which provides health care and outreach programs to people living with HIV/AIDS. A proposed development will see the 1875 house restored and incorporated into a five-storey state-of-the-art medical facility at its back. The stable, which sits in the way of a planned entrance to underground parking, is slated for demolition.

Both buildings originally belonged to William R. Johnston, a native of Dundas, Ontario, who entered the clothing trade in Montreal before moving to Toronto in the 1860s. Johnston was co-owner of Livingston Johnston and Company, manufacturers of men and boys’ clothing for the wholesale market. Business must have been good. Back when Jarvis Street was the city’s most coveted address, Johnston and his partner Livingston purchased adjoining lots and built identical houses on its east side. These were based on a design by the architectural firm of Langley, Langley and Burke, although the plans were not entirely adhered to as construction went forward. Incorporating a blend of styles popular in the late 19th century, the Johnston house is described by Patricia McHugh in Toronto Architecture, A City Guide as, “Neither Italianate villa nor French chateau nor Scottish manor,” but nevertheless having “enough of an historicizing air to qualify it for this fashionable Victorian Street.” Johnston – with his wife Elsie, his six children, and his billiard room – lived here until 1916.

In 1898 Johnston commissioned architect George Martell Miller to build him a coach house/stable at the rear of his property. [ed. – To put this in perspective, imagine hiring Arthur Erickson to design your garage.] Born in Port Hope in 1855, Miller arrived in Toronto in the 1880s where he taught at the Mechanics’ Institute before beginning his architectural practice in 1885. He had built the Gladstone Hotel in 1889 and overseen the construction of Massey Hall (1894), which had been drawn up by Sidney Bagdley, a Canadian architect based in Cleveland. A favourite of Lillian Massey, Miller would later build for her the neoclassical Household Science building (1908-12) at the University of Toronto. This now houses, in addition to UT and government offices, the flagship of the Club Monaco retail chain at Bloor and Queen’s Park. The original Havergal Ladies’ College, which he also designed, has survived – from 1945 as home to the executive offices for CBC radio, and now to the Margaret McCain Academic Building of the National Ballet School of Canada – as part of the evolving fabric of Jarvis Street.

The grandeur that was Jarvis would, following the Second World War, fall prey to the rising prominence of the automobile. In 1947 the street was widened considerably, eliminating the trees that had lent it much of its residential appeal. Early in the war, William Johnston’s former home at 571 Jarvis was converted by architect Gordon West for use as offices by the National Council of the YWCA. Much of the original craftsmanship, however, including elaborate decorative plasterwork, was retained. In 1983 Grey Lady Corporation took over the residence, and it has been known locally as the “Grey Lady” ever since. Peeling grey paint and overgrown plantings conceal much of its former glory but, even with its identical twin long demolished, it retains visual prominence in the neighbourhood, sitting as it does on a corner, surrounded by a sandstone and ironwork fence.

A dusty parking lot separates the house from its former stables to the east. Their current owner, Casey House – funded by the Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care – was Canada’s first freestanding AIDS hospice, opened in 1988. Founders of the organization no doubt hoped it would be redundant by now. Instead, having outgrown its facility at 9 Huntley Street, it requires a new home and new programs to attend to the physical, emotional, psychological and social needs of the thousands of HIV-positive adults living in Toronto. The Casey House Foundation has initiated a $10 million capital redevelopment campaign under the slogan, “It’s Time to Dream Again.” As recently as a year ago, the plan was to insert a new building between the coach house on Isabella and the “Grey Lady” on Jarvis. Somehow, in the interim, the proposed building has both risen from three to five stories and come to require that the coach house be demolished. While even “plan A” would mean the westering sun could no longer reach the cobble-stoned courtyard, surely a trip back to the drawing board is in order.

Editor's Note:
This item will be before Community Council in Toronto on Monday afternoon, item no. 33


5. Goderich: Heritage Canada Foundation and the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario support heritage recovery efforts in Goderich
Heritage Canada Press Release

Heritage Canada Foundation /
La fondation Héritage Canada
Communiqué

Ottawa, Ontario, August 30, 2011 – The Heritage Canada Foundation (HCF) joins the Architectural Conservancy of Ontario (ACO) in offering technical advice to the town of Goderich, Ontario, in assessing heritage conservation options in the wake of a powerful tornado that wreaked havoc in the historic downtown on August 21.

Goderich has two heritage conservation districts—West Street and Main Square—both of which sustained damage. Many are concerned that designated heritage buildings with the potential to be stabilized and repaired will be demolished without due consideration.

“I am pleased that longtime HCF member and collaborator and former ACO president Christopher Borgal will offer advice and assistance to the town on behalf of the Heritage Canada Foundation,” noted Natalie Bull, the foundation’s executive director. “Mr. Borgal is an award winning architect whose practice was located in Goderich for many years, and who developed early heritage conservation plans for Goderich’s West Street and Main Square.”

HCF encourages Canadians to support this important heritage recovery effort by making a tax deductible donation to the EdgeFund. A generous donor has offered to match the first $200,000 in donations, thereby doubling the impact of every gift.

For more information, please contact Paul Carroll at 519-524-8303 or heritage@edgefund.org

HCF Contact:
Carolyn Quinn
Director, Communications
cquinn@heritagecanada.org
1-866-964-1066; 613-237-1066 ext 229


6. CBC: Goderich Tornado Damage

Goderich to receive $5M in disaster relief Premier McGuinty vows to help rebuild 'Canada's Prettiest Town'

Premier Dalton McGuinty has announced that the Ontario government will allocate $5 million to a disaster relief fund to help Goderich, Ont., after a powerful tornado ripped through the town's centre on Sunday.

McGuinty said the funds will be put toward cleanup, recovery, and to help homeowners and businesses in cases where their own insurance won't cover the damages.

"You're not alone," McGuinty said in a Monday afternoon news conference, adding that 13 million Ontario residents are behind them. "We are with you and want you to take heart. We want you to know that we are in your corner."

Environment Canada has confirmed that the tornado that ripped through Goderich, Ont., on Sunday afternoon — causing massive damage and killing a man, as well as injuring dozens — was an F3.

 

Click here for Link

Editor's Note:ACO Council will be meeting in Goderich on September 24 as a show of support for local efforts to restore lost heritage.


7. CBC: Video of Goderich Damage

Tour with John Rutlege Architect

CBC's James Murray tours Goderich with architect John Rutlege and others. Disaster doesn't cover it. I have toured John Rutlege's office in the Masonic Temple....I truly hope they can rebuild all that has been lost. 

Click here for Link


8. Global: Photo gallery of Damage in Goderich

Click here for Link


9. Town of Goderich Emergency Web Site

The site contains information on clean up and emergency assistance. It is not clear if the funds from the province will cover heritage needs, so please consider also donating to the Heritage Canada/Architectural Conservancy of Ontario fund for heritage restoration in Goderich.

Click here for Link


10. Touring the Ontario Legislative Assembly with Speaker Peters

For those of you who missed the amazing tour of University Avenue and Queen's Park with Speaker Peters, this video will give you a taste....including the secrets of the attic.

 

 

Click here for Link


11. Doug Brown's Eden Smith book Online!
Catherine Nasmith

Hurrah

Doug Brown's terrific Eden Smith book is now on line in pdf format. 

Click here for Link


12. Globe and Mail: Kensington Market Lofts Adaptive Re-use
Dave Le Blanc

Would you buy this building for seven bucks?

There is a glow around architect Paul Oberst when he talks about Kensington Market Lofts.

The 64-year-old transplanted Kentuckian seems a rather positive fellow to begin with, but when he casts his mind back, the enthusiasm is palpable: “I think the building’s quite good, but I thought the story was really, really good.”

It’s a triple-scoop of a good story, actually, from little things such as what was retained in the three heritage structures, the bigger story of the complex’s history as various educational institutions and, finally, to how a neighbourhood came together in the 1990s to see their vision realized.

Standing in dappled shade of the building’s private courtyard, he points to where a sizable chunk of the glazed-terracotta-clad 1952 building was removed to allow for this amenities space. Set back into the new facade are generous balconies with zigzagging curtain walls, and below these are little square windows into the parking garage made from reclaimed glass block. “So you walk into the parking deck and there’s natural light in there,” he says, pleased.

Sure, it’s a little thing that he and the other designers did, but it’s thoughtful: so too was keeping the many original, wide terrazzo staircases. The stairs are wide, he reminds, because of the “hundreds of people” that studied here.

The first group arrived in the form of little children, when the William Houston Public School – a handsome three-and-a-half-storey building of rug brick and oversized windows – was built on Nassau Street in 1923-24. Surrounded by a large yard with a baseball diamond (a local resident who attended the school showed Mr. Oberst where it had been), by the Depression it was all but empty as kids were pulled out of school and put to work. After a stint as a military training facility during the war and then as the Ontario College of Art afterward, the building became the Provincial Institute of Trades in the early 1950s, when the two terracotta buildings were built to train plumbers, gasfitters, welders and electricians. When Mr. Oberst first moved to the city in 1970, he’d often walk past and marvel at the lightshow provided by student welders behind the glass block: “In the evening there’d be all of this sparking in the windows, it was really fun.”

Click here for Link


13. Hamilton Spectator: Treasure trove in Treble Hall
Teri Pecoskie

Restoration of the buildings exterior kicks off in spring 2011. Feswick expects it will take two years  and $2 million  before Treble Hall is restored to its former glory as a public space

Cathie Coward - Treble Hall, John St. North

When Jeff Feswick bought historic Treble Hall, he knew it had hidden potential.

It wasn’t until he started tearing up floorboards that he realized the John Street North landmark was hiding much more.

Dusty liquor bottles, frayed corsets, yellowed newspapers — all dating to the early 20th century. And now, those found artifacts are breathing new life into a building battened down for decades.

Click here for Link


14. Prince Edward County News / countylive.ca Blog: Call is out to save Prince Edward County lighthouses
Staff

Salmon-Point-Lighthouse

Five of Prince Edward County’s six remaining lighthouses have been nominated under the terms of the federal Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act. The sixth, The Salmon Point Lighthouse property, is privately owned and is currently listed by Century 21 realtor Jason Young for $4,999,000.

Marc Seguin has sent out the call to save Prince Edward County lighthouses.

A request for a heritage preservation project has been sent to MP Daryl Kramp, Mayor Peter Mertens, County councillors Alec Lunn, Barb Proctor and Jamie Forrester, and to Janice Gibbins, Chair of the Heritage Advisory Committee.

“These lighthouses represent a unique part of the County’s history,” says Seguin. “Lighthouses are no longer being built. Many of the lighthouses that once graced the County’s shores have been demolished. Those that remain deserve to be protected.

Click here for Link


15. Renovated Paisley Schoolhouse for Sale

 

Move in condition. A perfect blend of contemporary and up-country. Full designer renovation. Featured in 2011 Style at Home Magazine. 25 x 20 Great Room with 16 ft. ceiling. Scandinavian-styled wood burning stove. Sensational Steam Shower Room. Beautifully equipped modern bathrooms. Main floor laundry. Reclaimed wood flooring and vintage features throughout.

Set up your computer in large HOME OFFICE LOFT or have plenty of private sleeping space for family and guests. Geothermal heating/cooling system. Low monthly operating costs. Recent survey.

Enjoy stunning sunsets on the back porch swing in west-facing, one-acre backyard. Minutes to area golf courses and Lake Huron beaches. Miles of ATV/Snowmobile Trails

Click here for Link


16. The Record: Hespeler Factory/Condo Conversion Wild Success
Kevin Swayze forwarded by Brian Dietrich

American Standard factory condominium sales start by invitation only

CAMBRIDGE — People won’t be moving into condominiums in the old American Standard factory for two years, but Dan Dudack’s coffee sales are already climbing.

Java Garden at Guelph and Queen streets is 20 metres away from the empty stone landmark, where 200 upscale homes are proposed in a $30 million redevelopment.

Dudack noticed immediately when by-invitation-only sales centre quietly opened last week. It opens to the general public Sept. 10.

“This is great. Last week alone, just with the showings for people from emails, I’ve seen an increase in business,” Dudack said.

“They get sales brochures and go for a walk, get a coffee and talk.”

The landmark factory is visible through his front door. Its future has been the talk of regulars since it closed in 2007. Talk regularly turns to when renovations might start, people will move in.

“They’re all going to want coffee . . . you hope for the best.”

 

http://riverbanklofts.ca/

Click here for Link


17. Toronto Star: Toronto's Early Farmhouses
Cynthia Vukets

Original farmhouses still grace now-busy city streets

Tucked away on residential streets, in the middle of Toronto neighbourhoods are farmhouses hundreds of years old. These stone houses and log cabins would have looked out over acres and acres of forest and farmland when they were first built. Now, they sit next to modern bungalows, busy roads and coffee shops. They each represent a tiny piece of the country swallowed up by the city.

Then: The former village of York was parceled out in 200-acre land grants with the goal of creating farms that could grow food to supply the city. John Cox got the parcel of land next to John Scadding’s and built a south-facing log cabin. It would have looked out over rolling land freshly cleared of forest, and mud tracks instead of roads. Gerald Whyte of the Riverdale Historical Society says the Cox house is the oldest continuously inhabited dwelling in Toronto. Being made of wood, most farm cottages burned down or were knocked down by new land owners to build something more substantial. “Being this close to the city you’d think it would be part of the city, but it never really was,” says Whyte. “For over 200 years this has been sitting here from when nothing was around it, to look at it.”

Now: Don Procter and his wife began looking for a house about 12 years ago. He’d read about the Cox house and become intrigued. She suggested driving by an interesting Riverdale home she’d heard about — it turned out to be the same one and there was a “For Sale” sign out front. It was obviously destiny. Procter says friends tried to discourage them from buying what was then a slightly rundown, mildly mouldy house. But he got a heritage grant to fix up the place and renovate it in period style. He put in “six over six” paned windows and an addition constructed out of an 1850 log cabin that was dismantled in Port Hope and reconstructed here. During renovations, Procter exposed the original log wall and a brick door frame that is now at floor level but would have been the exit from the basement.

Click here for Link


18. Urban Toronto: Architects to Sign their Buildings in Toronto
Isidoros Kyrlan, forwarded by Stephen Otto

The City of Toronto To Better Acknowledge Architects June 28, 2011 10:44 am | by ... | Comments

Toronto's Planning and Growth Management Committee has adopted a small but significant recommendation that will acknowledge architects contributions to our city by placing their name near the front entrance of new buildings. Councillor Peter Milczyn, himself a trained architect, put forth the proposal. The recommendation reads:

“The Chief Planner and Executive Director of City Planning require as a standard condition of Site Plan Approval for any new building of 1,000 square metres or greater in Gross Floor Area, that recognition of the Architect of Record, or primary Design Architect of the building be affixed or inscribed on the building at a location near the main entry or prominent façade of the structure. That the lettering for this recognition cover an area of at least 0.2m by 0.3m, or 0.06 square metres.”

Click here for Link

Editor's Note:very interesting idea....it is nice to recognize the work of architects in this way


19. cottagecountrynow.ca: Church receives heritage protection - 'It's the second best but it's a very good second best'
Mary Beth Hartill

 

MAGNETAWAN – St. George the Martyr watches over the village of Magnetawan today as it has for more than 130 years and there is now an assurance that it will stand for many more.

July Flemming has been working to attain a heritage designation for the Anglican Church and is pleased with the results that came out of Magnetawan council’s August 10 meeting.

“It’s the second best but it’s a very good second best,” she said. “The best for the church would be Ontario Heritage Designation.”

Flemming says that on July 3 they met with Harry Huskins, the executive assistant to the Bishop of Algoma, at the church.

“He explained the church’s position and he gave an example of one on Manitoulin Island. He said there is a certain amount of loss of control when a municipality passes that bylaw because anything, including putting a new roof on, means that the church has to go to council to get approval,” she said. “We respect that because they are the owner and it is a church.”

She did say the church was in support of section 27 of the Ontario Heritage Act, which would allow the municipality to establish a municipal register of properties of historical and cultural value.

“They would list the church on that register and that is where council would have 60 days in any future decision that might not be good for the church,” she said. “It could be a change in the building that wasn’t suitable or it could be a demolition of the building … it is protective because council has that buffer of 60 days in order to bring in full heritage designation if they wish or to refuse permit to the owner, whoever that might be, so it very much is a good choice.”

 

Click here for Link


20. New York Times: The Highline
Casey Kelbaugh forwarded by Stephen Otto

The High Line by Day and Night

EVER since various dreamers on the West Side of Manhattan began to envision it, the High Line has signified New York’s future: a glimpse of where the metropolis might go if people dreamed, and schemed, hard enough.
Multimedia

But few of those forward-thinkers could have predicted what’s obvious now to anyone who goes for a stroll along the full length of this model of urban renewal on a weekday summer evening: The High Line is also nudging New York back into the past.

The scene along the elevated and meticulously landscaped walkway that stretches from Gansevoort Street to West 30th Street can feel like some Gotham Festival of the Lost Arts. As the sun slides down beyond the Hudson River and gives Barry Diller’s curved white colossus a weirdly holy gleam, you’re bound to encounter the lost art of the promenade, unhurried conversation, perhaps even someone using paper and pen to scribble free verse in a journal.

Grace Wright, a Williams College student who has spent the summer interning at Marvel Comics, could be found doing just that on a breezy Thursday evening in August. “This is a nice place to just sit and think,” she said. She lounged on a bench, sketching observations in a notebook. “It’s kind of soothing. Have you seen the theater seating just to watch the traffic below?”

Ms. Wright grew up in Tennessee and said that she found something comforting, up on the High Line, in being surrounded by so much foliage. “It reminds me of home because of all the tall grass,” she said.

Were it not for the profusion of flip-flops, ear buds and artisanal ice pops, a walker in the city might wonder whether he had passed through a kind of time portal into, say, the 1880s.

“It’s like a 19th-century bucolic stroll,” said André Balazs, the entrepreneur and High Line pioneer whose Standard Hotel stands astride the lower end of the serpentine urban boardwalk like a superhero’s lair. “You can almost imagine people with parasols.”

There might be a picnic in progress, arranged like a scene from a Gilded Age novel.

“People actually do walk and converse,” said Tom Colicchio, the chef, whose apartment on Horatio Street looks right out on the High Line and who helped put together the low-key cluster of food trucks and beer taps at the Lot, by the intersection of 30th Street and 10th Avenue. “It brings you back. I don’t know if it goes back to Edith Wharton, but at least to a time before cellphones.”

That portal, though, can quickly slam shut.

Were he to amble down a staircase from the High Line to the meatpacking district, the same walker might be inclined to think that he’d accidentally plunged naked into the “Hot Tub Time Machine.”

What you find on the ground, especially at night, is not a hushed echo of 1880s New York but a garish blast of the 1980s. The pulse of the nightclubs and the pose of the designer boutiques seem to carry such a genetic imprint of the Nancy Reagan era that you half expect Tad Allagash of “Bright Lights, Big City” to come stumbling out of a black door, wiping white powder off the collar of his blazer, knocking over a few yards of velvet rope and shouting at the doormen.

“It’s always been a nocturnal, bustling place,” Mr. Balazs said. “You used to pack the meat, now you pack the clubs. Interestingly enough, the hours of operation are not that dissimilar. And then it has this bucolic street, now, running down the middle of it, which couldn’t be more New York or more charming.”

There are mornings when Scott Conant, the chef at Scarpetta, likes to amble from his apartment on 30th Street down to his restaurant on West 14th Street, tapping his BlackBerry. And there are Saturday evenings when, after a busy night at the restaurant, he has been known to grab a few bottles of wine with comrades and sit on a patio watching the roaring, tottering tides of meatpacking partiers until 1 or 2 a.m.

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21. New Yorker Magazine: Requiem for a Covered Bridge
John Seabrook

Vermont has more covered bridges per square mile than any other state, more than a hundred altogether. Most were built in the nineteenth century.

Perhaps it’s the simple, humble way that the Bartonsville Covered Bridge seems to say goodbye, bowing first at its far end, then slipping behind the trees while keeping its structure, and its dignity, intact until its peaked roof slips into the Williams River. Perhaps it’s the grief in the voices of the onlookers. We all know that tourists like to take pictures of Vermont’s iconic covered bridges; what this clip shows is the deep affection that Vermonters feel for these structures, and the terrible sense of loss when one disappears. Most bridges are simply crossings, a means from one place to the next. But covered bridges seem like dwellings. They give a sort of permanence to transitions, and impart to the otherwise ordinary act of driving somewhere a special texture and a mystery. Perhaps their claim on the imagination has something to do with that momentous crossing everyone makes, to death.Perhaps it’s the simple, humble way that the Bartonsville Covered Bridge seems to say goodbye, bowing first at its far end, then slipping behind the trees while keeping its structure, and its dignity, intact until its peaked roof slips into the Williams River. Perhaps it’s the grief in the voices of the onlookers. We all know that tourists like to take pictures of Vermont’s iconic covered bridges; what this clip shows is the deep affection that Vermonters feel for these structures, and the terrible sense of loss when one disappears. Most bridges are simply crossings, a means from one place to the next. But covered bridges seem like dwellings. They give a sort of permanence to transitions, and impart to the otherwise ordinary act of driving somewhere a special texture and a mystery. Perhaps their claim on the imagination has something to do with that momentous crossing everyone makes, to death.

 

 

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