24 Sussex Drive, Ottawa, Ontario. Photo Credit: Alasdair McLellan, Wikimedia Commons

24 Sussex Drive

Ottawa, Ontario (1868) The Building:The house at 24 Sussex Drive is the official residence of the Prime Minister of Canada during his or her term of office. The house has been renovated many times with unsympathetic alterations prevailing in most cases. The oldest part of the house dates from the 1830s. It is a national … Read more

Annandale House Museum, Tilsonburg, Ontario. Photo Credit: Colincan, Wikimedia Commons

Annandale House Museum

Annandale House National Historic SiteTilsonburg, Ontario (1880) About the Building:With its magnificent interior, Annandale House serves as a monument to the Victorian style of design, known as the “Aesthetic Art Movement”. Popularized by Oscar Wilde, this movement promoted the use of colour and decorative detailing in all areas of the home. From extravagant, hand-painted ceilings … Read more

Capitol Theatre, Port Hope, Ontario. Photo Credit: Yoho2001, Wikimedia Commons

Capitol Theatre

Port Hope, Ontario (1930) The Building:One of Canada’s last remaining fully operational atmospheric theatres. An atmospheric theatre is one in which hidden mechanical projectors are used to enhance the audience experience of a specific atmosphere. The whole design intent from sidewalk to audience chamber is intended to enthrall the audience and simulate a particular atmosphere. … Read more

Castle Kilbride, Baden, Ontario. Photo Credit: Tudor Costache, Wikimedia Commons

Castle Kilbride

Baden, Ontario (1877) The Building: The castle is a restored Italianate villa with a large addition designed by architect C.A. Ventin, and converted to house municipal offices in Wilmot Township. Project Synopsis:Historic Plaster Conservation Services was responsible for determining the feasibility of improving the strength of a great deal of heavily decorated plaster, and for developing … Read more

Chateau Laurier Hotel, Ottawa, Ontario

Chateau Laurier Hotel

The Drawing Room, Chateau Laurier Hotel – Fairmont HotelsOttawa, Ontario (1912) The Building:A historic chateau now part of the Fairmont Hotel chain. This Bell Epoch chateau building was built at a time of evolving technology. Not quite fully non-combustible in its construction, the ornamental plaster in the grand rooms was the modern cast fibrous plaster … Read more

Colonial Building, St. John's, Newfoundland CANADA. Photo credit: Nilfanion, Wikimedia Commons

Colonial Building

St. John’s, Newfoundand (1850) The Building:A neoclassical structure, a provincial historic site and the home of the Newfoundland government and House of Assembly from 1850 to 1959. The building is being restored to become the future Museum of Newfoundland. Project Synopsis:As the plaster conservator on a multi-phased restoration project, Historic Plaster Conservation Services began its … Read more

Convocation Hall, University of Toronto. Photo Credit: Jphillips23, Wikimedia Commons

Convocation Hall, University of Toronto

Toronto, Ontario (1907) About the Building:One of Toronto’s premier concert and speaking venues, Convocation Hall is a domed rotunda and the centerpiece building on the grounds of the University of Toronto’s downtown campus. Designed by renowned architects, Frank Darling and John A. Pearson, the building was inspired by the grand theatre of the Sorbonne and the … Read more

Dominion Public Building (now the John Sopinka Courthouse), Hamilton, Ontario. Photo Credit: Whpq, Wikimedia Commons

Dominion Public Building

Hamilton, Ontario (1937) The Building:Post Office, Customs House and Federal Government edifice built as a works project during the Great Depression. Many such grand art deco buildings were built across Canada during that period. Project Synopsis:Floor to ceiling marble cladding designed to look like ashlar with mortar joints created using a contracting color of marble … Read more

Dundurn Castle, Hamilton, Ontario. Photo Credit: Nhl4hamilton (Rick Cordeiro), Wikimedia Commons

Dundurn Castle

Hamilton, Ontario (1835) The Building:A National Historic Site and Hamilton’s most famous landmark buildling. Project Synopsis:Although it appears to be constructed of ashlar, the walls of this 1830s Italianate Villa are actually brick covered in stucco. The building underwent a major exterior renovation in the mid 1990s. Working with Taylor Hazel Architects, HPCS and Craig … Read more

Elgin County Courthouse, St. Thomas, Ontario

Elgin County Courthouse

St. Thomas, Ontario (1853) The Building:The Elgin County Courthouse has been associated with the administration of justice in the County of Elgin for more than 150 years. One of the first of its kind, the courthouse is a prominent example of the combined courthouse, jail and county buildings erected by counties in many parts of … Read more

Gage House (aka Battlefield Museum), Hamilton, Ontario. Photo courtesy Nhl4hamilton via Wikimedia Commons

Gage House

Hamilton, Ontario (1796) The building:Gage House (aka Battlefield Museum) was the homestead of the widow Mary Jones Gage and her two children, James and Elizabeth, who journeyed to the area from New York State in 1790. During the War of 1812, the Gage family was forced from the residence, which became the headquarters of the … Read more

George Street United Church, Peterborough, Ontario

George Street United Church

Peterborough, Ontario (1843) The Building:Closely resembles the Metropolitan Methodist Church in downtown Toronto. Both buildings were designed by architect Henry Langley. The formal opening took place on Christmas Day 1875. In 1891, a 40-foot church tower was completed with four large pinnacles at the corners and four smaller pinnacles in between. High on the tower … Read more

Glanmore National Historic Site

Glanmore National Historic Site

Belleville, Ontario (1883) The Building:A beautiful historic house museum.  Project Synopsis:Since 2008, Historic Plaster Conservation Services has been the plaster conservator for this beautiful historic-house museum featuring extensive decorated paint finishes. Our initial involvement was precipitated by an extra heavy load of snow breaking through the roof and causing the wood lath and plaster ceilings … Read more

Keene United Church, Keene, Ontario

Keene United Church

Keene, Ontario (1833) The Building: A small brick church in a small country town. Project Synopsis:The ceiling was being damaged by seepage and bat guano that had accumulated and was still accumulating in the attic. A very significant cleaning program was initiated by HPCS with a large vacuum truck making relatively short work of the bulk … Read more

Library of Parilament, Ottawa, Ontario CANADA

Library of Parliament

Ottawa, Ontario (1876) The Building: One of Canada’s most spectacular buildings (it is on the Canadian ten dollar bill) is the hexadecagon (16 sided) Library of Parliament in the heart of the Parliamentary Precinct in Ottawa. The library survived a fire that completely destroyed the adjacent Parliament Buildings in 1916. Renovations after another minor fire that … Read more

Massey Hall entrance at night (photo by Nephron)

Massey Hall

Toronto, ON The Building:Massey Music Hall was opened in 1894 as a memorial to Hart Massey’s oldest son, Charles Albert Massey and a gift to the city of Toronto. The exterior is red pressed brick and somewhat austere. The interior space of the building is almost entirely taken up by the performance space and seating. … Read more

Metropolitan United Church, London, Ontario. Photo Credit: jofo2005, (CC BY-ND 2.0) Flickr.com

Metropolitan United Church

London, Ontario (1896) The Building:The largest United Church in Canada with seating for 1300 people The Solution:The church was undergoing a major sanctuary redecoration and updating of various mechanical systems under architect Bill Ruth of Tillman and Ruth Architects. HPCS developed and implemented a conservation and stabilization program for the vaulted plaster ceilings of the … Read more

New Brunswick Legislature, Fredericton, New Brunswick, CANADA. Photo Credit: Breau, Wikimedia Commons

New Brunswick Legislative Building

Fredericton, New Brunswick (1882) The Building:A Second Empire style structure, featuring a 125-foot-high dome tower, was built to replace the original building destroyed by fire in 1880. Project Synopsis:Historic Plaster Conservation Service was called to visit the site and make recommendations for a possible conservation strategy for the fragile wood lath and plaster ceiling of … Read more

Notre Dame Cathedral Basilica, Ottawa, Ontario. Photo Credit: Jeangagnon, Wikimedia Commons

Notre-Dame Cathedral Basilica

Ottawa, Ontario (1847) The Building: a gothic inspired edifice and a National Historic Site of Canada. The cathedral is in the centre of Ottawa, which lies above a seismic activity fault line. Our assessment of attached plaster ornament in historic buildings in Ottawa is an especially important focus of our work there. The Wisdom of … Read more

Old City Hall, Toronto, Ontario CANADA

Old City Hall

Toronto, Ontario (1899) The Building:The Richardsonian Romanesque former City Hall is one of the largest buildings in Toronto and was the largest civic building in North America upon completion in 1899.  Consolidating Plaster from a Remote Location in 150 RoomsThe collapse of a section of office ceiling in 2006 precipitated an investigation by HPCS that … Read more

Our Lady of the Assumption Church

Windsor, Ontario (1845) Project Synopsis:The church is undergoing a major multi-phase restoration. Phase One was completed in 2019 and included a new copper roof, heating system, and abatement work. Phase Two is the interior restoration which started in 2020 and is currently underway and includes stabilization and restoration of the vaulted plaster ceilings of the … Read more

Red Chamber, Province House, Halifax, Nova Scotia, CANADA. Photo Credit: Louperivois, Wikimedia Commons

Red Chamber, Province House

Halifax, Nova Scotia (1818) The Building: The oldest legislature in Canada, featuring the Red Chamber room, which housed the Senate in pre-confederation days and is now used for royal visits and other ceremonial affairs of state. The Problem:The Adams style ceiling of the Red Chamber is festooned with applied plaster moldings thought to have been shipped … Read more

Spadina House, Toronto, Ontario. Photo Credit: rhdouglas, Wikimedia Commons

Spadina House

Toronto, Ontario (1866) The Building:Former estate of a prominent Toronto family, the mansion was initially restored as a museum and civic reception centre in the late 1980′s. Project Synopsis: HPCS was responsible for the design and execution of the conservation plan for the exhibit areas in the five basement rooms, including the kitchen and staff quarters. … Read more

St. Michael's Cathedral, Toronto, Ontario

St. Michael’s Cathedral

Toronto, Ontario (1848) The Building: Designed by renowned architect, William Thomas, St. Michael’s is the cathedral church of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Toronto and one of the oldest churches in the city. Project Synopsis: HPCS has a long-standing relationship with +VG Architects-The Ventin Group, a Toronto-based firm that brings an enlightened and progressive approach to … Read more

Tassie Hall, Galt Collegiate Institute, Cambridge, Ontario. Photo Credit: Ian Furst, Wikimedia Commons

Tassie Hall

Tassie Hall, Galt Collegiate InstituteCambridge, Ontario (1852) The Building:A Collegiate auditorium Project Synopsis:The 200-seat high school auditorium, added in the 1930s, has a vaulted ceiling, comprised of expanded metal lath and cement-based plaster, which had been severely damaged by continued water infiltration. A survey conducted by HPCS indicated that if we could consolidate the plaster … Read more

Rideau Hall, Ottawa, Ontario

The Royal Suite, Rideau Hall

Ottawa, Ontario (1833) The Building:Since 1967, Rideau Hall has been the official residence of the Canadian monarch and the Governor General of Canada. Originally built as a stone villa, the building has undergone significant expansions over the years, and is now comprised of 170 rooms totaling 102,000 square feet.  Project Synopsis:An assessment by Historic Plaster … Read more

Union Station, Toronto, Ontario. Photo Credit: Dhodges, Wikimedia Commons

Union Station

Toronto, Ontario (1927) The Building:Canada’s largest and busiest train station. Project Synopsis:Union Station is undergoing a $250 million renovation scheduled to be completed in 2020. Historic Plaster Conservation Services is the project’s plaster conservator, working with a large team, including Dima Cook the lead heritage architect for FGM Architects (FGMDA). One of the principle issues … Read more

Historic Plaster Conservation Services