Queen's Park and the PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS are home to the Province of Ontario's Legislature and the seat for MPP'S ( Members of Provincial Parliament ) .
Numerous exhibits can be found throughour the first floor hallways focusing on the culture, history and parliament of Ontario.
Nestled within the Unversity of Toronto campus area is Queen's Park, home to the Province of Ontario's Legislature & the seat for MPPs. (Members of Provincial Parliament) It is hard to believe that Queen's Park is normally this calm, for it was the battleground between public interests & the previous governing Progessive Conservatives. Under their leadership, there were numerous teacher strikes, protests by social assistance groups, NGOs, & even demonstrations against education policy.
There are numerous Legislative & Community exhibits found throughout the first floor hallways, mainly focusing on the history, culture heritage and parliament of Ontario. One historic gem here is Upper Canada's first mace, which was taken by American Troops during the 1812 war, and returned in 1934.
Also within the Ontario legislature building is the parliament chamber, where political parties debate a wide range of issues including healthcare & education. From the visitor galleries above, you can view a session of the provincial parlimament. The House meets Monday through Thursday from 1:30 p.m. to 6:00 p.m and on Thursday mornings from 10:00 a.m. to noon. Make sure the house has not recessed when you attend, or you will be dissapointed.
You could also attend one of its many public tours, including a general 1/2 hour tour that is free of charge. All tours depart from the information counter inside the front doors of the Legislative Building.
Monday-Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Closed weekends and holidays
(Victoria Day Weekend - Labour Day)
Monday-Friday, 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Weekends and Holidays 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
There is also an Inside - Out tour, a free one hour tour outside and inside the parlimentary buildings. Tours begin at 3:00 p.m. from the main lobby of the Legislative Building. This tour is available Saturdays, Sundays and Holidays from Victoria Day Weekend to Labour Day. It is also held daily in July and August.
When you walk along University Avenue you cannot help but notice the grand Romanesque Revival building at the north end of the street. Whether this building appeals to your senses in a matter of debate however you cannot argue with the fact it is a very stately looking building. The building was constructed in 1892 by Richard Waite. It was designed in pinkish red sandstone with fine archways in the facade.
The interior of the building can only be visited by way of escorted tour that set out fairly frequently from the front lobby. On the tour you can learn a lot about local political history which will obviously be of little interest to those from outside of the province of Ontario. At onetime you could wander around the charming corridors on your own, which I occasionally did, but with the rise of terrorism, this is no longer the case.
The exterior of the building is surrounded by a small urban park known as Queen's Park. During holidays, especially local ones, there are frequently picnics held here with play actors dressed up in historical garb. Of course this being a political assembly, the site is also the location of more than a few political demonstrations and even a riot or two.
Those who visit the University of Toronto will notice that Queen's Park divides it in two. In fact, the University of Toronto is built around Queen's Park, which adjoins the Parliament buildings, also known as.... Queen's Park. The entrance to QP is towards College Street, although it is quite a way off from the street and the station. The building itself is unique because of its red brick and its dark grey domes, although you'll likely also notice the flurry of different flags (representing the province, the federation and also the Lieutant-Governor of Ontario - a blue flag with yellow leaves). The Parliament was built in 1893 (Ontario joined Confederation in 1867, but has had representative government since 1841. This was the result of the Durham Report of 1840, Queen Victoria's response to the Upper Canada Rebellions of 1837) and is constructed of red sandstone. It is sometimes referred to as the "Pink Palace".
This is one of the structure I really like too. Looks like a castle and with a beautiful well kept park called the Queen's park.Statues of historical figures can be seen in the park as well like Queen Victoria, King George V and John A Macdonald ,the first prime minister of Canada. The building is made of bricks assembled by the prisoners of the province of Ontario. It's near University of Toronto. I just walked the the length of University Avenue starting from Queen street where the old and new city hall, Osgood hall, Campbell museum and the Canada life building are just around.
PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS: At the head of University Avenue is the PARLIAMENT BUILDINGS OF ONTARIO. Toronto is the capital of Ontario & it is here that the business of the province is enacted & the Lieutenant-Governor has his office.
Built in 1885, the architecture indicates the admiration of the architects & public of that time for buildings in the European style. It gives the impression of strength & deliberations.
The Ontario Parliament Building , home of the provincial legislature since 1893 is built of pink sandstone, and is situated at the end of University Avenue.
A little bit of history about the building.:-
Ontario's elected representatives made the point that the province was a small but exceedlingly loyal part of the British Empire and clamoured to make it's mark and had the money to do so. Consequently the Members of the Provincial Parliament (MPP's) commissioned this immensely expensive structure in the Romanesque Revival style. Finished in 1892 its main facade is a panoply of towers, arches, and rose windows, decorated with relief carvings and set beneath a series of high-pitched roofs.
The interior is of matching grandeur. Gilded classical columns frame the main stair-case and enormous stained-glass windows illuminate long and richly timbered galleries.
A fire razed the west wing in 1909 which was rebuilt in Italian marble. The stone was very expensive, so the MPP's were annoyed to find that a large amount of the marble was blemished by dinosaur fossils, which can still be seen today in the west hallway.
Visitors can sometimes watch the parliament in session.
Built in 1893 This was the fifth location to provincial parliament. A fire in 1909 destroyed the west wing, that was reconstructed with Italian marble, while the east wing still shows the original wooden details.
Today, it is the governor's residence.
The Parliament building in Queens Park. Take a free tour if you can.
This is where Ontario's government has been meeting since 1893. I visited during the summer when the House was not in session so I couldn't watch any of the debates. But if you visit in the spring or fall I'd definitely take the oppertunity to watch. This is actually quite a nice building. When in the chamber, look for the gold mace. Apperently there's a rule, going back to British times, that parliament could not meet if the mace wasn't there. So of course they had a bit of a problem when the Americans stole it. Also look for the difference between the east and west wings. In 1909, a fire destroyed the west wing and it was redone with marble imported from Italy. If you look carefully you can actually see dinosaur fossils hidden in the walls. The east wing still has the original wood and iron.
the ontario legislative building is a marvellous, and large, richardson romanansque building, in quens park. sourounded by statues of famous Ontarions, this pink sandstone building is one of toronto architectural gems. there are free tours of the inside.
Normally open to the public, the visitor may stroll through the buildings and grounds, view the exhibits on the history of parliament, or take a guided tour.
All visitors must check in at the Main Information Desk in the front lobby. Open Mon-Fri. 9-4. Free