Description of Historic Place
The Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse is located in the village of Burritts Rapids, which occupies an island beween the Rideau River, and the Rideau Canal. The house is a two-storey, gable roofed structure clad with cove woodsiding. An open, gable-fronted porch protects the front door. The main road through the village crosses the canal adjacent to the Bridgehouse on a steel swing bridge. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.
The Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse, which provided accommodation for those operating the swing bridge, is associated with the post-Confederation use of the Rideau Canal for transportation purposes. The Bridgehouse was built as a residence for the bridgemaster, and replaced an earlier one from the 1850s. The bridge continues to be used as a means of crossing the canal to the town of Burritts Rapids, a Loyalist settlement of the 1790s. The house is now used as a library.
The Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse is valued for its good aesthetic design and is a good example of vernacular frame construction from the period. The functional residential design of the building reflects the early twentieth-century commercial and recreational use of the canal system, and is evidenced in the interior’s side hall plan. Good craftsmanship can be seen in the woodwork; overall this exhibits the competent craftsmanship of the period.
The Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse maintains an unchanged relationship to its site and is compatible the historic character of its streetscape setting in Burritts Rapids. It is a familiar landmark to local residents and visitors.
James De Jonge, Twenty Nine Buildings, Central Area, Rideau Canal, Ontario, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office, Building Report 91-072 to 91-081.
The following character-defining elements of the Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse should be respected:
Its good aesthetic, functional design and quality materials and craftsmanship, for example:
-the two-storey massing;
-the cedar-shingled gable roof, and the chimney;
-the frame construction and the exterior clad with cove woodsiding;
-the regular placement of the windows and doors;
-the small front entrance porch and the single-storey frame addition;
-the interior configuration, including the painted wood-plank floors.
The manner in which the Burritts Rapids Lockstation, Bridgehouse maintains an unchanged relationship to its site, and is compatible with the historic character of its streetscape setting in Burritts Rapids. It is a familiar landmark, as evidenced by:
-its ongoing relationship to its grassed site and to the adjacent swing bridge;
-its overall scale, design and materials that are compatible with its village streetscape surroundings;
-its familiarity within the area due to its role as a community library;
-its visibility due to its prominent location on the town’s streetscape adjacent to the water and swing bridge.