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McNair Residence

288 East 6th Street, North Vancouver, British Columbia, V7L, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1992/11/22

Exterior view of the McNair Residence, prior to renovation, 1988; Donald Luxton, City of North Vancouver, 1988
Front elevation
Exterior view of the McNair Residence, 2004; City of North Vancouver, 2004
Front elevation
Exterior view of the McNair Residence, 1907; North Vancouver Museum and Archives, #9185
Oblqiue view

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/03/09

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The McNair Residence is a large two and one-half storey plus basement wood-frame Edwardian era Foursquare estate home surrounded by a recent townhouse development. The historic place includes the building and grounds.

Heritage Value

Built in 1907, the McNair Residence is valued for its association with James Archibald McNair (1866-1942), a prominent manufacturer and lumberman in Vancouver and beyond, known as the "Shingle King of the Northwest." Born in Jacquet River, New Brunswick, McNair arrived in Vancouver in 1892, and, with his brothers, Robert and William, established a shingle mill at Hastings. By 1906, the McNair Fraser Lumber Company had expanded greatly, further incorporating an extensive shingle mill operation in Lynn Valley on the North Shore of Burrard Inlet and six shingle mills in Washington, U.S.A. McNair also served as the Ferry Commissioner for North Vancouver. McNair built this large family home, on a south-sloping site which afforded a spectacular view of the mountains of Vancouver Island and Washington State, English Bay and Vancouver, and his mill at Hastings. The extensive property was originally landscaped with pools, shrubs, and fruit trees.

The McNair Residence is valued as an example of a large estate home of the Edwardian era. It features a large wrap around verandah that takes advantage of the magnificent view to the south. Many of the wood mouldings, casings, banisters, newels, verandah posts, and spindles, both inside and outside the home were stock items supplied from the McNairs' Vancouver mill.

Source: Heritage Planning Files, City of North Vancouver

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the heritage character of the McNair Residence include its:
- regular cubic form, imposing scale and symmetrical massing
- location on a high point at the back of the south-sloping property
- elements of the Foursquare style such as rigorous symmetry of plan and elevation and a central entry hall
- tapered stone verandah piers that display a Craftsman style influence
- wrap around verandah with square porch columns
- hipped roof with hip dormers
- narrow lapped wooden siding
- tall prominent brick chimneys
- fenestration: multi-paned double-hung, wooden-sash windows; wooden-sash casements with transoms; double-hung paired wooden-sash windows in dormer (1-over-1); decorative stained glass panels
- inset second floor balcony above central entry
- original interior features, such as wood panelling, floors, trim and staircase details, that employ a variety of exotic and imported woods
- mature landscaping including large ornamental Cherry Tree and Red Maple at rear



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



Single Dwelling

Architect / Designer




Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Heritage Planning Files, City of North Vancouver

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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