Home / Accueil

Command Post

Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3V, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1996/03/28

Corner view of the Command Post, 1995.; Agence Parcs Canada / Parks Canada Agency, Ian Doull, 1995.
General view of the place
No Image
No Image

Other Name(s)


Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1890/01/01 to 1904/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2006/12/05

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Fortress Observation Post, obscured by forest cover, is situated on a sloping plateau to the west of Halifax Harbour. It is an ‘L’-shaped, one-storey, utilitarian concrete structure with a flat roof. The structure’s main elevation features two doors and four windows. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Fortress Observation Post is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.

Historical Value:
The Fortress Observation Post is an example of a late-19th century structure associated with the coordination of shore-based coastal defence for the Imperial naval station of Halifax. The upgrade of the Halifax defences had a significant economic impact on the community of Halifax.

Architectural Value:
The Fortress Observation Post is a good example of a specialized, defensive command structure integral to a permanent late-19th century fortification. The irregularly shaped plan proved versatile and housed observation equipment while two other interconnected rooms served as office, communications room, or guardroom and barracks. This functional structure exhibits good craftsmanship and materials.

Environmental Value
The Fortress Observation Post reinforces the Spion Kop fire command position and the present military character of the York Redoubt National Historic Site setting that is familiar to staff and visitors within the immediate area.

Ian Doull, York Redoubt, Halifax Defence Complex Volume 3, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Building Report 95-001

Fortress Observation Post No. 658, York Redoubt, Halifax Defence Complex, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Heritage Character Statement 95-001.

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements of the Fortress Observation Post should be respected:

The functional, utilitarian design and good quality materials, for example:

- The irregular massing of the ‘L’-shaped, multi-functional structure, the reinforced concrete walls, the gently pitched concrete slab roof and cast-in-place concrete chimneys.
- The opening pattern on the main elevation consisting of two doors and four windows.
- The internal arrangement of the space including, a central space which connects to two other rooms.

The manner in which the Fortress Observation Post reinforces the present military character of the setting within the York Redoubt National Historic Site and is familiar within the immediate area of Spion Kop, as evidenced by:

- The specialized, utilitarian design and materials that ensure a physical relationship to other related, operational buildings.
- Its visibility to visitors and to staff within the immediate vicinity.




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



Military Support

Architect / Designer

Corps of Royal Engineers



Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Canadian Inventory of Historic Building Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 525, 25 Eddy Street, Hull, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




Related Places

York Redoubt

York Redoubt National Historic Site of Canada

York Redoubt National Historic Site of Canada is comprised of a large, cleared plateau on the west side of Halifax's inner harbour opposite McNabs Island and a gun battery and…


Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Nearby Places