Monthly Archives: March 2013

Dundas’ Carnegie Gallery in the midst of a revitalization

Carnegie Gallery on King Street W and Ogilvie Street, Dundas

Carnegie Gallery on King Street W and Ogilvie Street, Dundas

One of the most beloved heritage buildings in Dundas is getting both a facelift and a new addition.

Carnegie Gallery is in the midst of a revitalization project by Dundas-based architects Perkins + Will. The changes being made to the gallery include street level accessibility, a wheelchair accessible washroom, a visitor operable elevator, and some extra gallery wall space, among others.

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The street level accessibility will be on Ogilvie Street, via the new addition. This addition will be an atrium, which is superimposed against the southern side of the building. The atrium will feature large floor-to-ceiling windows facing the street and a brick accent that should fit seamlessly with the building’s existing exterior.

The building is a neoclassical (or beaux arts) design, with its tall staircase, portico, doric columns, and half columns.

Originally Carnegie Library, the building first opened its doors on December 8th, 1910. The city was one of 111 cities in Ontario (125 in Canada) to receive a grant of $12 000 USD from the Carnegie Foundation. Pittsburgh steel tycoon Andrew Carnegie created the foundation to promote education. In order to qualify for the grant, a municipality had to be able to provide library maintenance by raising an annual amount of one-tenth the grant, from taxes.

The library stayed open until 1970, when a new municipal library was erected further south on Ogilvie Street. The space was converted into a children’s library that lasted only ten years, after which, it was then leased to the Dundas Art and Craft Association.

Heritage Plaque on the side of Carnegie Gallery

Heritage Plaque on the side of Carnegie Gallery

In 1980, Carnegie Library was designated as a heritage building and was converted into Carnegie Gallery in 1981. The building was later purchased by the City of Hamilton in 2006.

Carnegie Gallery currently exhibits bodies of work by local artists and contains a gallery shop that sells art and other goods.

The Province of Ontario has provided the Dundas Arts Community Foundation with a 1.2 million dollar grant for the Carnegie Library Revitalization project.

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Architectural Spotlight: Riccio Towers

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Riccio Towers
Upper James St S. and Stone Church Rd
KNY Architects
In proposal

Riccio Towers is a proposed condominium development that would be situated at the corner of Upper James and Stone Church, on the Hamilton Mountain.

At grade, the towers would have a connecting podium with storefronts for commercial usage. The two towers are of a contemporary design, consisting primarily of glass, with an offsetting inward twist at each floor – a design similar to the Absolute World towers in Mississauga (which just won the archdaily.com Building of The Year award). Both towers would be 30 storeys, with a combined total of 290 units. There are also townhouses proposed for the eastern side of the development – making for an easier, more seamless transition with the surrounding neighbourhood of low-rise buildings, townhouses, and detached homes.

Although this proposed development could be a great addition to the city’s core (the design would undoubtedly add beauty to the downtown skyline), these towers would be a daring, groundbreaking fit into the ever-growing Hamilton Mountain. Additionally, Riccio Towers would also make an easy to spot landmark for the mountain – a reference point for wayfinding in an area surrounded by big box stores, strip malls, and low-rise buildings.

This development would be close to a number of amenities, including the John C. Munro Airport, and just a short drive to the Lincoln Alexander Expressway and the downtown core.

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Filed under Architecture, Development