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Former Married Privates' Quarters, Building 523

Esquimalt, British Columbia, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1991/07/11

Exterior 3/4 picture, front and side, 1989; Parks Canada/Parcs Canada, 1989
Exterior Picture
No Image
No Image

Other Name(s)

Former Married Privates' Quarters, Building 523
Signall Hill No. 523
Signal Hill no 523

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1904/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/11/18

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523, is situated on the main road leading to the naval dockyard. The red brick and masonry structure is a one-and-a-half-storey, rectangular, gable-roofed building with large chimneys placed at regular intervals. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523 is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.

Historical Value:
The Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523 is an example of a residential building integral to the Signal Hill complex. It was constructed as part of the Victoria-Esquimalt coastal artillery system to defend the dockyard and the Victoria coastline against enemy attack. Its former role was that of Married Privates’ Quarters to house members of the British Army Ordnance Corps, and it was among the last structures completed during the joint Anglo-Canadian development phase.

Architectural Value:
The Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523 is a very good example of the multiple-unit barracks built in Canada by the Royal Engineers, based on Georgian design antecedents. Superior craftsmanship is evident in the quality of the masonry construction and ornamental brickwork, characteristic of the Royal Engineers’ work.

Environmental Value:
The property of the Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523, along with the adjoining Former Armament Artificer's and Sergeant’s Quarters, form an isolated residential enclave. It is compatible with the present military character of Signal Hill and the Canadian Forces Base at Esquimalt. Previous use as a naval museum has made the structure a regional landmark.

Sources:
Ian Doull, Signal Hill, CFB Esquimalt (10 Buildings), Canadian Forces Base Esquimalt, British Columbia. Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 89-203

Signal Hill Gun Emplacement No. 523, CFB Esquimalt, Esquimalt, British Columbia. Heritage Character Statement 89-203

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements of the Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523 should be respected, for example:

Its functional design and good quality materials and craftsmanship, for example:

-The simple, large massing of the one-and-a-half-storey, rectangular, gable-roofed building with large brick chimneys.
-The main entrances accessed through projecting front and rear shed-roofed vestibule entrances.
-The organisation into identical sections, the projecting frieze, the plinth and pilasters of rounded brick, the large corbelled brick chimneys, and the brick voussoirs.
-The ornamental brick and stonework, the large six-over-six sash painted windows, and the grey slate roof.
-The British style exterior plumbing drainpipes located on the rear elevation.

The manner in which Former Married Privates’ Quarters, Building 523 is compatible with the present military character of Signal Hill and CFB Esquimalt and is a regional landmark as evidenced in:

-Its scale, simple massing and red brick exterior that matches similar buildings in the vicinity.
-Its size, prominent location, and prior use as a museum that has made the structure a regional landmark.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

Federal

Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy

Recognition Type

Recognized Federal Heritage Building

Recognition Date

1991/07/11

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Function - Category and Type

Current

Historic

Defence
Military Support

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

n/a

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

3992

Status

Published

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