Description of Historic Place
Carlton Victorian Streetscape is a heavily treed street with seventeen houses constructed in a variety of Victorian styles that were built between 1860 and 1906. The street is located in Halifax, Nova Scotia, between Spring Garden Road and College Street. All of the houses correspond quite well in scale, materials, and design details. The heritage designation applies to both the buildings and the surrounding land.
Carlton Victorian Streetscape is valued as an excellent example of a Victorian era residential street. Originally Carlton Street was part of the South Commons in Halifax. Prior to 1818 this area was divided into four large lots that were purchased by merchants Richard Tremaine and John Staynor. The lots were again subdivided and houses began to be built in 1860 and continued until 1906. During this period construction materials and labour was inexpensive. Those who had money built lavish houses, such as those on Carlton Street, employing many men. Following the end of World War I the cost of building supplies increased and there was shortage of labour, both of which slowed the construction of elaborate and large homes. In addition Victorian homes, such as these on Carlton Street, became too costly to maintain and often were converted to rooming houses or hotels, and some were demolished and replaced by smaller, unadorned dwellings. Today Carlton Victorian Streetscape is a rare example of an intact Victorian era street, consisting of seventeen large and lavish homes.
Architecturally, Carlton Victorian Streetscape is valued for its sense of unity in scale, materials, and detail. These homes incorporate and blend elements of the Greek Revival, Modified Gothic, and Second Empire styles. The combination of these styles in the Victorian era is known as Late Victorian Eclectic style. The houses and townhouses range between two and three storeys, which allows for the human element and sense of community to flourish. All of the houses are of wood frame construction. There is a variety in the pitch and type of roof lines, placement of the doorways, and window styles that compliment each other’s unique characteristics. In addition, the buildings offer a vast array of dormers, windows, and bays, decoration, porches, and verandas. Each house commands its own attention and compliments its adjoining, adjacent, and opposite structure.
Source: HRM Heritage Property File: Carlton Street Streetscape, found at HRM Planning and Development Services, Heritage Property Program, 6960 Mumford Road, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
The character-defining elements of Carlton Victorian Streetscape relate to its Late Victorian Eclectic Style and include:
- mix of Greek Revival, Modified Gothic, and Second Empire style homes;
- steeply pitched gable and mansard roofs;
- two and three storey wood framed structures;
- wood siding;
- side hall plan and central entrances;
- complimentary window styles in shape and size;
- variety of dormers, windows, and bays, decoration, porches, and verandas.