Saturday 25 May 2013

Doors Open - Old City Hall

Our third and final stop of the day for Doors Open was at Old City Hall. This is a building I have long admired. All the detail on the outside makes it one of the most beautiful and interesting buildings in the world. Built in 1899, it was almost demolished to make way for the Eaton Centre. Thankfully that never happened.

This is a building that every time I go by it, I spot a detail I have never noticed before. I plan to go back a few times this summer and concentrate on a single section of the building and photograph the all the detail.

It was great to have the opportunity to go inside as it is now used as a courthouse with lot's of security. Nobody is allowed inside unless they have business there.

Lions help to guard the entrance inside and out.

This is the great hall, shot from above. Usually security and metal detectors are at the front entrance way.

The architect E.J. Lennox put great detail into the interior too. The doorknobs all had the city's coat of arms on them and the top of the columns each had individual designs.

The huge stained glass on the staircase "The Union of Commerce and Industry" was done by Robert McCausland shows the progress of Toronto.

The original Council Chambers is now used as a civil court but none of the original features have been changed or removed. Desks and chairs have been added so it is a little crowded but I'm glad they left its original form. For security reasons photography was not allowed. Damn!

When we left, I had to take some shots of the faces that are all around the entrance. The story is that they are caricatures of city hall councilors of the day. E.J. Lennox did not get along with them and took the opportunity in his work to permanently make fun of them. I'll be back to take some closer shots in the future.

Teena and I both enjoyed the chance to get inside this great old building.

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