Links and documents
1928/01/01 to 1932/01/01
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Situated on a corner site immediately west of Parliament Hill, the Confederation Building is a large government office building designed in a picturesque Chateau style. It has a V-shaped plan composed of two wings flanking a tall towered entranceway. The building is faced in rusticated and random coursed stonework, and is crowned with steep copper roofs decorated with dormer windows, turrets, finials and cresting. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Confederation Building was designated a Classified Federal Heritage Building primarily because of its importance in defining the character of the federal precinct west of Parliament Hill. Its size, siting, and rich architectural detailing have played a key role in extending the vocabulary established by the original Parliament buildings. Its original construction was an important step in the efforts of successive federal governments to transform Ottawa into a worthy national showplace. The building continues to have a strong influence on the ambience of the Wellington Street core.
Ian Doull, Confederation Building, Ottawa, Ontario, Federal Heritage Building Review Office Building Report 87-037; Confederation Building, Ottawa, Ontario, Heritage Character Statement, 87-037.
Key elements that define the heritage character of the Confederation Building include:
-the major façades, which were carefully designed to establish an appropriate "Civil Gothic" vocabulary for new federal government buildings;
-the rich blending of dormers, turrets, oriels, pavilions and towers, with extensive corbelling and carved detailing in the stonework;
-the Wellington Street façade, which displays a variety of carved detailing including the provincial coats of arms, the representation of Canadian occupations, and carvings of Canadian youth, wildlife, and native peoples; the selection and detailing of material in the principal public interior areas, including most of the marble, brass, bronze, terrazzo and decorative plasterwork;
-the decorative plasterwork on the frieze and cornice of the ground floor lobby, which continues the Canadian symbolism of the exterior.
Government of Canada
Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy
Classified Federal Heritage Building
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Office or office building
Architect / Designer
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection