Description of Historic Place
Royal Military College of Canada (RMC) Building 24, also known as the Former Gun Shed and the Tailor Shop, is located on the waterfront near the parade square at the RMC campus. This long, flat-roof building is clad in stone with slightly projecting pavilions, topped with castellations in the form of squared off corners and wave-formed central pediments. The main entrance and the long façade features a carved relief which depicts an artillery piece on its carriage. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
RMC Building 24 is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.
RMC Building 24 is closely associated with RMC’s role in preparing for the First World War, in particular the emergence of a professional armed force in Canada. The building was constructed as a result of growing pre-war tensions in Europe. The provision of specialized facilities for the training of officer candidates in battlefield simulations, as well as improved facilities for gun storage and practice, signaled a shift from the peacetime emphasis on civil and military engineering toward a war footing.
RMC Building 24 is a very good aesthetic example of a multi-purpose facility used in military training exercise. The building’s architecture combines functional planning with architectural details and artistic images evocative of military history. The building’s structure of iron and steel allows for large open spaces accommodating offices and stores, resulting in a very good functional design. The rusticated stone cladding of the exterior with smooth stone detailing is evidence of its very good craftsmanship.
RMC Building 24 reinforces the character of its military setting at Point Frederick Buildings National Historic Site of Canada and is a familiar structure in the area.
Sources: Joan Mattie, Former Gun Shed, now Tailor Shop, Building #24, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario, Federal Heritage Building Review Office Building Report 93-99; Former Gun Shed, Building #24, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario, Heritage Character Statement, 93-099.
The character-defining elements of RMC Building 24 should be respected.
Its role as an illustration in the emergence of a professional armed force in Canada is reflected in:
- its provision of specialized facilities for the training of officer candidates in battlefield simulations, as well as improved facilities for gun storage and practice.
Its very good aesthetic and functional design, and very good craftsmanship, for example:
- the long, symmetrical, single-volume mass, representing the interior arrangements in exterior forms;
- the elaborated roof lines, with their articulated, castellated parapets;
- the very good handling of the exterior stone cladding, including some random coursing, rustication and carvings;
- the regular fenestration, including large, vertical windows, and the modulation of the long elevations, and the subsidiary symmetries of the end pavilions;
- the iron and steel construction which allows for an open, interior space, bracketed by subdivided end zones;
- the interior wooden and metal details.
The manner in which RMC Building 24 building reinforces the character of its military campus setting at Royal Military College of Canada and is a familiar landmark, as evidenced by:
- its overall scale, design and materials which reinforce the surrounding structures at the campus;
- its prominent position in an important part of the campus near the parade square and on the waterfront;
- its familiarity as a regular destination for cadets, as a Tailor Shop where uniforms are both fitted and stored.