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1927 West 17th Avenue

1927 West 17th Avenue, Vancouver, British Columbia, V6J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1994/11/21

Exterior view of 1927 West 17th Avenue; City of Vancouver, 2008
Front elevation
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/12/10

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The house at 1927 West 17th Avenue is a two and one-half storey turreted Queen Anne Revival style house in Vancouver’s Shaughnessy neighbourhood. It is prominently located mid-block on the north side of the street behind mature landscaping.

Heritage Value

The house and garden at 1927 West 17th Avenue is important for its aesthetic values, particularly for its style, siting, landmark status and surrounding gardens.

A prominent landmark in the neighbourhood, this grand house was built during a world-wide economic boom as part of the exclusive First Shaughnessy area, developed by the Canadian Pacific Railway as a way to introduce design fashion and make a profit, creating in the process a unique aesthetic environment and housing stock that was influenced by styles from different periods of English history.

Constructed in 1912, the house’s fanciful design aesthetic is an expression of the robust economic context of Vancouver in the early 20th century. The house is an example of a speculatively built high-end residence, along with the similar Cobb House at 1020 Victoria Drive. Both houses shared the same builder and both were designed by Alfred E. Beswick, a prominent local architect known for his ecclesiastical architecture.

The place is important for the siting, aspect and location of the house on its large lot. The architecture responds to the large front and side yards, and takes advantage of the large site by including the side yards as usable outdoor space. The lane access to the rear garage is an important aspect of the site and reflects the original neighbourhood planning and layout.

The house is a good example of the Queen Anne Revival style, whose fanciful characteristics fulfilled the needs of the newly rich of the 19th century, and in which romantic eclecticism is the keynote. The house demonstrates typical characteristics, such as the asymmetrical massing and tower and the decoratively rich exterior. The design of the house is complemented by the gardens with mature trees and shrubs.

Source: City of Vancouver Heritage Conservation Program

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the house at 1927 West 17th Avenue include:

- Siting towards the front of the lot
- Original complex form of the house, including very unusual turret form centrally located on the front face of the building
- Complex roof forms, including bell-shaped turret roof with finial bracket roof support details
- Tall foundation, maintaining the original relationship of main floor to grade
- Front porch and stair form and details
- Door and window locations, form and materials, including leaded glass windows and rare rounded glass windows in turret, which drop into the casing to open
- Pressed concrete facing on foundation
- Prominent brick chimney forms
- Original shingle siding
- Surrounding large side yards and gardens



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

City of Vancouver

Recognition Statute

Vancouver Charter, s.582

Recognition Type

Community Heritage Register

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Single Dwelling


Architect / Designer

Alfred E. Beswick



Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Vancouver Heritage Conservation Program

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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