Links and documents
1916/01/01 to 1927/01/01
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Housing the Senate and the House of Commons, the Centre Block in the Parliament Complex is an ordered, monumental building constructed in Nepean sandstone with copper roofing. Designed in a Gothic revival style, the clearly articulated exterior, with its grand public entrance through the soaring Peace Tower, and flanking entrances to the House of Commons and Senate Chambers, reflects a rational and well-ordered interior plan. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Centre Block was designated as a Classified Federal Heritage Building because of its exceptional significance as a national landmark, and because of the ceremonial and iconographic design and detailing of the building itself. As the site since 1922 of both the House of Commons and the Senate, it has come to symbolize Canada's nationhood.
Robert Hunter, Parliament Hill Complex, Ottawa, Ontario, Federal Heritage Building Review Office Building Report 86-052; Parliament Hill Complex, Ottawa, Ontario, Heritage Character Statement, 86-052.
Key elements that define the heritage value of the site include:
-its conception as a symbol of Canada;
-the whole of its exterior, centred on the Peace Tower;
-its many public interiors and its ceremonial circulation spaces, which are inextricably entwined with its symbolic and practical functions as the seat of government, and thus embody its heritage character;
-its function as an example of the design methodology of the École des Beaux Arts applied to a Gothic design vocabulary;
-its clear functional layout reinforced by a carefully considered hierarchy of space;
-the Gothic ornament of the building, which does not aspire to a 19th century
picturesqueness, and which is carefully worked out to reinforce the clear reading of the building and its hierarchy of space;
-the on-going carving program in the building, which has become a small part of its heritage character (the original design of the building made ample provision for continuing decoration, which has generally taken the form of commemorative devices).
Government of Canada
Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy
Classified Federal Heritage Building
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Legislative 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
Parliament Hill, Complex
The Parliament Hill Complex in Ottawa is composed of four Gothic Revival pavilions that together make up the Parliament Buildings. Surrounding an expansive lawn and overlooking…