Municipal Library Building
Municipal Library, former RCMP Detachment
Bibliothèque municipale de Jasper, ancien détachement de la GRC
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
In the centre of Jasper, the Municipal Library Building is situated on the corner of Elm Avenue and Robson Street and is adjacent to the Superintendent’s Residence. It is a rectangular, two-storey hipped-roof structure in a picturesque Tudor Revival Style with fieldstone foundation walls and a tall projecting stone chimney. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Municipal Library Building is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values:
The Municipal Library Building was the first purpose built Royal Canadian Mounted Police detachment quarters within the National Parks System. The R.C.M.P. served an important role within the parks as both a police force and a symbol of Canada. The erection of the building was prompted by the need for better facilities in keeping with Jasper’s growing status. The Municipal Library Building is also associated with the theme of the development of one of Canada’s first National Parks and of early Canadian tourism.
The Municipal Library Building is a very good early example of the Rustic Tudor Revival Style favoured by the Architectural Division of the Parks Branch during the 1920s and 1930s. The building uses a variety of materials characteristic with this style such as stucco, wood and local stone. The stonework of the foundation wall and chimney are striking aspects of its rustic detailing.
The building remains a familiar landmark within downtown Jasper because of its prominent location and its role as a library. The architecture and materials harmonise with both its immediate setting in the park and with the majestic mountain surroundings. Emphasising natural building materials, the Superintendent’s Residence is reinforces the character of the area and complements its environment.
Kate MacFarlane, Municipal Library Building (Former RCMP Detatchment Building), Jasper Townsite, Jasper National Park, Alberta. Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 89-019; Municipal Library Building, 500 Robson Street, Jasper, Alberta, Heritage Character Statement 89-019.
The character-defining elements of the Municipal Library Building should be respected.
Its Rustic Style and very good quality materials and craftsmanship as manifested in:
- the scale, rectangular massing and overall picturesque design;
-the steeply pitched hipped roof covered with cedar shingles and the projecting front gable and entrance;
-the irregular massing of the facades with dormers, gables and tall projecting chimneys;
-the basement walls clad with fieldstone;
-the multi-paned windows;
-the two fieldstone fireplaces.
The manner in which the Municipal Library Building acts as a landmark within the townsite and also reinforces the character and the picturesque setting within Jasper National Park as evidenced by:
-the architectural vocabulary which harmonises with both its immediate setting in the park and with the majestic mountain surroundings.
Government of Canada
Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy
Recognized Federal Heritage Building
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
Architect / Designer
Architectural and Town Planning Division; Division of National Parks
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection