Description of Historic Place
Royal Military College of Canada (RMC) Building 5, also known as the former headquarters building for the Royal Military College Riding Establishment (H.R.E.), or the Former Riding Academy, is located on an attractive landscape at the north end of the Royal Military College of Canada campus, in Kingston. This red brick building is a two-storey block, topped by a hipped roof, attic storey with a gabled dormer on each side. A carved-stone block with the name "Riding Establishment" stands out under the eave of the front façade, while a similar stone with the letters "RMC" sits in the gable above the dormer windows. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
RMC Building 5 is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.
RMC Building 5 is closely associated with the program of equestrian training for the officer corps. The building is also associated with the RMC’s equestrian demonstrations for the public, including a version of the ‘Musical Ride’. The building and its grounds are a significant component of the RMC’s local relationships alongside its national importance.
RMC Building 5 has good aesthetic quality. It is part of a cohesive group of buildings that are visually linked by their materials and design, based on an Arts and Crafts aesthetic. Also of good functional design, the building’s interior plan is multifunctional with spaces for living and working. Very good craftsmanship is evidenced in the stone work and wooden details, specifically of the interior, including the sturdy staircase, wide mouldings and some of the doors.
RMC Building 5 is located on an attractive landscape which complements the equestrian training environment and is compatible with the character of its campus setting at Royal Military College. The building is familiar in the area.
Sources: Joan Mattie, former Riding School, Buildings #3, #5, and #36, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario, Federal Heritage Building Review Office Building Report 93-99; Former Headqaurters, “RMC Riding Establishment”, Building 5, Royal Military College, Kingston, Ontario, Heritage Character Statement, 93-099.
The following character-defining elements of RMC Building 5 should be respected.
Its design based on an Arts and Crafts aesthetic, functional design and very good craftsmanship and materials, for example:
- the free-standing, roughly-squared block with a gable-dormered hip roof facing four directions;
- the symmetrical fenestration and modulation of the east elevation, with a distinct but complementary asymmetry of similar elements of the remaining faces;
- the stone detailing, including the building base, lintels and sill, and the identifying carved signs and elaborated front doorway on the east elevation;
- the wooden details of doors, windows and the central areas inside.
The manner in which RMC Building 5 is compatible with the campus setting of Royal Military College of Canada and is a familiar landmark, as evidenced by:
- its design and materials which are compatible with the cohesive complex of complementing structures set in an attractive landscape at the north end of the RMC campus;
- its pivotal location in an attractive, visible and historically functional setting.