Bay Street Armoury
Bay Street Drill Hall
Salle d'exercices de la rue Bay
Links and documents
1912/01/01 to 1914/01/01
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
The Bay Street Armoury is a large structure whose form and detailing conjure up the images of a fortress through the incorporation of towers, crenellated turrets and a low wide arched entrance, reminiscent of a fortified gate. The Armoury is located on the edge of Victoria’s downtown core and is situated in a mixed urban environment. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.
The Bay Street Armoury is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental value.
The Bay Street Armoury is closely associated with the militia building campaign of 1896-1918, in which more that 100 drill halls and armouries were erected across the country. These buildings played a significant part in the militia reform by functioning as both training, and recruitment centres.
The Bay Street Armoury is a very good example of an armoury designed in the Tudor Revival style with references to medieval military architecture. Structurally the building exhibits the most integrated use of new structural materials available in the early 20th century.
The Bay Street Armoury reinforces the present character of its mixed, residential, commercial and industrial setting on the edge of Victoria’s downtown core. It is a conspicuous and familiar building in the community.
Jacqueline Adell, Bay Street Drill Hall, Victoria, British Columbia, Federal Heritage Building Review Office, Building Report, 90-220; Bay Street Drill Hall, Victoria British Columbia, Heritage Character Statement, 90-220.
The character-defining elements of the Bay Street Armoury should be respected.
Its reference to medieval military architecture designed in the Tudor Revival style, structural design and high quality building materials, for example:
- the simulated features typical of medieval military construction that include a low prominent tower; crenellated turrets that flank the main entrance, crenellated parapet walls that crown the building, and masonry pilasters on the exterior elevations formed like medieval buttresses;
- the symmetrically organized façades with windows of various shapes;
- the high quality masonry work;
- the steel frame and arched steel trusses;
- the structural materials consisting of steel and iron encased with fireproof materials and reinforced concrete used together with wood, stone and brick.
The manner in which the building reinforces the present character of its mixed residential, commercial and industrial setting and is a familiar building within the community as evidenced by:
- its relatively low scale and traditional materials which harmonizes with the mixed urban neighbourhood.
Government of Canada
Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy
Recognized Federal Heritage Building
Theme - Category and Type
Function - Category and Type
- Armoury or Drill Hall
Architect / Designer
Department of Public Works, District Architect, W.R.Wilson
Location of Supporting Documentation
National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec
Cross-Reference to Collection