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Rossland City Hall and Fire Hall

2115 Queen Street, Rossland, British Columbia, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1989/03/13

2115 Queen Street; City of Rossland
Front View
2115 Queen Street; City of Rossland
Historic Front View c. 1900
No Image

Other Name(s)

Rossland City Hall and Fire Hall
The Old Firehall

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2020/03/03

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

Rossland City Hall / Fire Hall is a two-storey red brick institutional building situated on two city lots near the northwest corner of Queen Street and First Avenue, in the historic downtown of Rossland, B.C. It has three arched bays at street level on its southern facade, and a prominent hose/bell tower on its southeastern corner.

Heritage Value

The Rossland City Hall / Fire Hall is recognized for its historic, social, and aesthetic value as one of the Rossland's oldest municipal buildings and one of B.C.'s oldest fire halls.

The heritage site is valued for its landmark status representing the sense of civic duty and community pride that are central to Rossland's identity. Fire protection was one of key issues behind the push to incorporate the city (1897) and was the most important item of business for the newly elected Council, April 1897. A vision was expressed for a community-funded, co-located fire hall and city hall, as neither entity existed at the time. The building was opened in 1901 for use by both the fire department and the city hall (located on the upper floor). The heritage site serves as a reminder of the series of devastating fires that consumed much of the established Downtown, such as Spokane Street - 1902, Columbia Avenue south side - 1927 and Columbia Avenue north side - 1929, and of the firefighters who fought to ensure more of the city's wood frame buildings were saved in each event.

The heritage site is valued for its continued use as a municipal building for over 80 years and is a testament to the enduring qualities that this purpose-built structure possessed allowing it to support its original function through many technological changes in both firefighting and public administration throughout the decades.

Additional value lies in the attempt to convert the building into the first Provincial Firefighters' Museum. Driven by the community, the inspiration to create a provincial museum in one of the oldest surviving fire halls in the province resulted in over a decade of advocacy and fundraising and six years of major restoration and rehabilitation work, including the reconstitution of the hose/bell tower, between 1988 and 1993 which prolonged the life of the building and reinforced its position as one of the most significant structures in the city's history.

Heritage value also lies in the heritage site's aesthetic qualities such as its brick material, formal design and large scale that reflect the modern and growing city that Rossland was at the turn of the twentieth century. Rossland was able to afford to protect itself with a top-notch fire service as evident in the physical qualities of the site.

Character-Defining Elements

The elements that define the character of the Rossland City Hall / Fire Hall include its:
- Original prominent corner location in Rossland's historic downtown core
- Institutional and municipal use for over 80 years, from 1900 to 1980s
- Situation in the centre of two city lots, with distance from First Avenue on is southern facade to allow for the navigation of fire equipment in and out of the vehicle bays
- Two-storey red brick construction, with original window, door, and vehicle bay openings that speak to its use as a fire hall
- Grand scale and formal institutional design expressing its institutional and municipal function
- Prominent hose-drying/bell tower on the southeastern facade
- Presence of the original fire bell in the tower
- Row of tall windows on upper storey
- Two-storey arched entrance to the former city hall on eastern elevation
- Surviving original windows and doors
- Surviving evidence of the changing nature of firefighting technology over time, such as remnants of horse-drawn technology, to automotive fire engine use, to the change to an electronic siren alarm system
- Surviving evidence of the use of the upper storeys of the building as City Hall, including the vault
- Signage identifying the building as the fire hall and city hall



British Columbia

Recognition Authority

Local Governments (BC)

Recognition Statute

Local Government Act, s.967

Recognition Type

Heritage Designation

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Peopling the Land

Function - Category and Type


Commerce / Commercial Services
Eating or Drinking Establishment


Fire Station
Town or City Hall

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

City of Rossland - Rossland Heritage Commission

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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