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Refreshment Stand

Hogs Back, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1997/02/20

General view of the Refreshment Stand, 1997.; Agence Parcs Canada / Parks Canada Agency, G. Fulton, 1997.
General view
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Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1954/01/01 to 1955/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2008/04/23

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Refreshment Stand is an open-air public shelter, which stands in a park overlooking the majestic Hog’s Back Falls in Ottawa. The generous, circular shelter is built of light steel framing and has a striking polygonal roof and pinnacle. Within the shelter are a fieldstone-faced circular refreshment booth, a kitchen and public washroom facilities. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Refreshment Stand is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.

Historical Value
The Refreshment Stand at Hog’s Back Park is associated with the Greber Plan for Ottawa, which encouraged the creation of extensive parkland and corridors of green space in the national capital region. The building fulfilled the need for a traditional sheltering picnic pavilion in the park and offering food and hygiene facilities to the visitor. The Refreshment Stand is the product of a period of significant growth in Ottawa, when the Greenbelt was being assembled in response to the recommendations of the Greber report.

Architectural Value
The Refreshment Stand is valued for its very good aesthetic qualities and is an example of festival architecture of the 1950s. Designed in the modern style, the Refreshment Stand is characterized by closed, low, rectilinear, heavy forms juxtaposed within an open, airy and taller, circular shelter. Demonstrating a good, modern functional design, the light steel framing system and ‘folded-plate’ plywood roof shelter is open to the site and welcoming to the public. Its fieldstone-faced refreshment booth, kitchen, and public washrooms merge into the landscape of the park. The building materials were specifically selected for the modern style design, and reflect a desire for low-tech materials combined with high-visual impact.

Environmental Value
The Refreshment Stand maintains an unchanged relationship to its site at Hog’s Back Park. The structure reinforces the public character of its park setting and is familiar within the immediate area.

Sources: Gordon Fulton, Refreshment Stand, Hog’s Back Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office, Building Report, 95-132; Refreshment Stand, Hog’s Back Park, Ottawa, Ontario, Heritage Character Statement, 95-132.

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements of the Refreshment Stand should be respected.

Its very good aesthetic design, good functional design and good materials and craftsmanship, for example:
-the asymmetrical form and massing, which is comprised of closed, low, heavy forms, including a circular refreshment booth, rectilinear, kitchen and public washrooms, set within an open, airy, taller, circular shelter with a polygonal roof with pinnacle;
-the fieldstone-faced concrete frames of the refreshment booth, kitchen and washrooms;
-the light steel framing system and the folded-plate plywood roof, and the plywood and simple clip system;
-the bright polychromatic colour scheme.

The manner in which the Refreshment Stand maintains an unchanged relationship to its site, reinforces the public character of its park setting and is familiar within the immediate area, as evidenced by:
-its ongoing relationship to its open parkland site and the water;
-its open modern design, which welcomes the public and harmonizes with its natural setting;
-its visibility to visitors, due to its location in the park beside the water and near the road;
-its familiarity to visitors, due to its public use as a shelter, refreshment booth and public washrooms.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy

Recognition Type

Recognized Federal Heritage Building

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)


Theme - Category and Type

Function - Category and Type



Commerce / Commercial Services
Eating or Drinking Establishment

Architect / Designer

Watson Balharrie



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




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