The RCMI is dead. Long live the RCMI.
When the Royal Canadian Military Institute
signed the deal with Tribute Communities to have a condo tower built on top of its HQ, the idea was that the original 1912 façade (upgraded from the 1907 version on the same spot) would remain as part of the building's design. The deal also stated that the institute would continue to operate out of the same address they have for the past century, sharing the space with the new tower.
Then came the demolition, and heritage architect ERA
's decision that the façade on its own was not in any condition to stand or be incorporated into the new structure.
"It was in extremely poor repair," says Col. Gil Taylor, president of the RCMI, "and to be perfectly honest, we didn't have the money to bring it back to the state it should have been in."
So it came down as well, with a decision to reproduce it. But not only is the façade being reproduced, the RCMI's space and facilities are being greatly expanded, by about 100 per cent in Taylor's estimation, up to 36,000 square feet across six floors (the old structure was a three-storey building).
The RCMI will also own those six floors. "We aren't part of the condo corporation," Taylor says. "We do have some mutual areas, part of the lobby for example, and part of the exterior. There'll be some shared maintenance cost, but as far as the institute is concerned, it'll be freehold."
The Governor General will lay the cornerstone for the RCMI on Saturday at 4pm, following in the footsteps of predecessors Earl Grey
, who laid the first cornerstone in 1907, and the Duke of Connaught
, who laid the cornerstone for the fully renovated building in 1912.
Writer: Bert Archer
Source: Gil Taylor
Do you know of a new building going up, a business expanding or being renovated, a park in the works or even a new house being built in the neighbourhood? Please send your development news tips to email@example.com.