Ottawa’s Building Permits, 1945


City of Ottawa, Development, Ottawa / Tuesday, December 6th, 2016
James Beach and R.C. Greig teamed up to construct this apartment on Second Avenue at Bronson in 1945. Image: Google Maps (May 2016).
James Beach and R.C. Greig teamed up to construct this apartment on Second Avenue at Bronson in 1945. Image: Google Maps (May 2016).

Due to the wartime material and labour shortages I noted yesterday, construction in 1945 was, to say the least, pokey. Where there were 55 “important” building permits listed in the 1946 Annual Report, the number was only 24 in 1945.

The single most expensive permit that year was for James Beach’s apartment, located on Second Avenue at Bronson in the Glebe. The 24-unit $100,000 apartment was completed in the Summer of 1946.1”$100,000 Apartment For Second Avenue, Ottawa Journal, November 12, 1945, p. 1.; “1946 May See Biggest Boom in Ottawa Building,” Ottawa Journal, January 12, 1946, p. 1. Beach, of course, went on to construct a number of apartments through the 1950s and 1960s.

Nothing was sacrificed for Beach's new building: the slightly off-shape lot was empty. Image: geoOttawa (1928).
Nothing was sacrificed for Beach’s new building: the slightly off-shape lot was empty. The surrounding homes in the Glebe were, at the time, quite new. Image: geoOttawa (1928).

Another notable project that was permitted in 1945 is Hyman Berlin’s $60,000 Nelson Theatre, or the Bytowne Cinema, as it is known today. Earlier this year, Robert Smythe gave some of the theatres of that era a good shakeout, including the Nelson.

The Bytowne Theatre is probably the most well-loved feature of Uptown Rideau. Image: July 2014.
The Bytowne Theatre (born the Nelson) was 1945’s fourth most valuable building permit issued. Image: July 2014.
OwnerDescriptionLocationValue
Henry Birks & SonsStore front alterationsSparks Street35000
H. BerlinTheatre and StoresRideau Street60000
Chateau Cheese Co.Boiler HouseYork Street15000
J.R. Beach & R.C. GreigApartment House-100000
Corporation of OttawaStorage BuildingBayview Road14692
Roman Catholic School BoardSchoolGraham Avenue78000
Ottawa Paint WorksFactoryWellington Street30000
H.V. O'RourkeStore and ApartmentsSomerset Street West15000
Ottawa Electric RailwayGarageMiddle Street27000
McCoy ServiceStorage and Storage BuildingYork Street15000
Ritchie Feed & Seed Co.Grain ElevatorBoteler Street25000
John Heney & SonGarageCatherine Street30000
Hancock Tire & Tread Co.Workshop and Garage-17000
J.R. Booth, Ltd.Barking Drum BuildingBooth Street21000
J.R. Booth, Ltd.Storage BuildingBooth Street20400
M.R. LortieApartment HouseSt. Patrick Street20070
Dept. of FinanceHouse to ApartmentsWilbrod Street14200
Murphy-Gamble Ltd.Garage and WarehouseLaurier Avenue West25000
Dept. of Public WorksLaboratoryRochester Street80475
Jas. More & SonsOffice BuildingLaurier Avenue West22500
B. WeissRepairs to fire damaged buildingRideau Street15000
M.L. ClearyTriplexRideau Terrace22500
Dept. of National DefenceTransport BuildingLansdowne Park55000
Canadian National RailwaysGarageKing Edward Avenue33708

Notes   [ + ]

1. ”$100,000 Apartment For Second Avenue, Ottawa Journal, November 12, 1945, p. 1.; “1946 May See Biggest Boom in Ottawa Building,” Ottawa Journal, January 12, 1946, p. 1.

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