City Hall & Nathan Phillips Square, Toronto

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  • Looking up at Old City Hall
    Looking up at Old City Hall
    by grandmaR
  • Todd vs The Vertebra
    Todd vs The Vertebra
    by Todd64
  • Old City Hall
    Old City Hall
    by HORSCHECK
  • grandmaR's Profile Photo

    Big Ben in Toronto?

    by grandmaR Updated Dec 6, 2005

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Looking up at Old City Hall

    Favorite thing: Toronto has a lot of interesting architecture - I've been somewhat interested in the local building styles ever since I observed that in Philadelphia there were a lot of stone buildings, but in New England, with all those rocks dropped by retreating glaciers, stone buildings were rare.

    In any case, I'm apt to take pictures of interesting buildings and then sometimes I can't identify them. Laura (hayward68) very kindly helped me ID the Old City Hall.

    I could sort of see the New City Hall from my hotel room, and have a picture of it from there - don't know when I took this one. Built in 1899 in the Romanesque Revival style, the Old City Hall has a clock tower (which reminded me of the tower on Parliment in London), "Friends of Old City Hall" exhibit and a War Memorial and the criminal courts. Guards at the doors will check all bags and you'll have to walk through the metal detector.

    Fondest memory: Across the street is the New City Hall, known as Nathan Phillips Square (built 1958-65).

    City Hall Tour On-Line is a website about the Old City Hall.

    "Under construction for more than a decade and costing more than $2.5 million, Toronto's third City Hall was officially opened on September 18, 1899, by the mayor of the day, John Shaw...

    "Old City Hall was designed by Toronto architect Edward James Lennox whose later projects included Casa Loma and the King Edward Hotel. When Toronto's fourth City Hall opened across Bay Street in 1965, Old City Hall became a courthouse for the Ontario government."

    "...Built mostly out of Credit Valley Stone, the castle-like plan includes corner pavilions, monumental round-arch openings, an interior courtyard and elaborate decoration inspired by the middle ages. Apparently, without consent, Lennox incorporated his name in the stonework; beginning on the west (Bay Street) wall and extending around the building, the letters E.J. LENNOX ARCHITECT A.D. 1898, are inscribed in the corbels under the roof. The cenotaph, unveiled outside the Queen Street entrance in 1925, was the site of many important civic celebrations, including those marking the end of the Second World War.

    "The clock tower rises 103.6 metres (300 feet) and is positioned to look down Bay Street. The clock and bells were not installed until late 1900. The monumental bells first pealed on December 31, 1900. The largest bell, "Big Ben", weighs 5443 kg (11,648 lbs).

    Related to:
    • Architecture
    • Budget Travel
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  • Todd64's Profile Photo

    'The Archer' at City Hall

    by Todd64 Updated Aug 7, 2003

    2.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Todd vs The Vertebra

    Favorite thing: Sit or stand on/in/around 'The Archer' sculpture in front of City Hall which was created by one of my favorite sculptors; Henry Moore. I dig art you can actually touch, absorb; fry an egg on in the hot summer sun. Try it-you'll like it. :o)

    More On Moore

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  • HORSCHECK's Profile Photo

    Toronto Downtown

    by HORSCHECK Written Feb 25, 2003

    3.5 out of 5 starsHelpfulness

    Old City Hall

    Favorite thing: Explore Torontos Downtown on foot and enjoy the mixture of modern and historic architecture. Toronto has some of the tallest skyscrapers in the world, but there are still plenty of historic buildings inbetween the modern architecture.
    The photo shows the tower of the Old City Hall which celebrated its centennial birthday in september 1999.

    Related to:
    • Adventure Travel

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