Description of Historic Place
The Government of Canada Building in North Head faces the water and is prominently sited on a knoll located near the harbour. It is a one-storey, flat-roofed, rectangular, brick structure with a symmetrically arranged, Art-Deco inspired façade. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Government of Canada Building in North Head is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.
The Government of Canada Building in North Head is associated with the federal government’s efforts to offset the effects of the Depression in a small community. The fishery-based economy of Grand Manan Island was in decline in the 1930s, and the construction of a government building was an effort to stimulate the local economy.
The Government of Canada Building in North Head’s design and form incorporates Art Deco and classically inspired details. The building’s exterior is distinct from its more classically derived contemporaries designed by government architects and this innovative, yet modest, design displays a high degree of craftsmanship.
The Government of Canada Building in North Head is compatible with the present character of its small town setting. Prominently sited near the harbour it is a familiar landmark within both the community of the island and the region.
Sources: Gordon Fulton, The Government of Canada Building, Highway 776, North Head, Grand Manan Island, New Brunswick. Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 93-118; Government of Canada Building, Highway 776 (Grand Manan Island), North Head, New Brunswick, Heritage Character Statement 93-118.
The following character-defining elements of the Government of Canada Building in North Head should be respected.
Its Art Deco style and good quality materials and craftsmanship, for example:
- the simple massing and rectangular one-storey form with its flat roof and formal symmetry;
- the brick walls topped by a stepped cornice and semi-circular parapet wall which frames a round clock;
- the flat façade broken by two slightly projecting brick pilasters, flanked by two main doors;
- the stylized stone speed lines above the doors;
- the substantial stone door surrounds, inscription cartouche, and the rusticated stone foundation.
The manner in which the Government of Canada Building is compatible with the small town maritime character of North Head and is a local landmark as evidenced by:
- its modest scale and detailing concurrent with the traditional local architecture;
- its prominent downtown location facing the harbour, and also through its role as a post office that increases its profile within both the community and the region.
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection