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Public Building

22 Circle Street, Kapuskasing, Ontario, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1991/06/13

Federal Building Recognized Federal Heritage Building; (Public Works Canada / Travaux publics, 11741, K13/1-1, 1989.)
Federal Building
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Other Name(s)

Public Building
Federal Building
Édifice fédéral

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)


Listed on the Canadian Register: 2005/12/12

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Public Building is prominently located at the intersection of the southern portion of Queen Street and the Circle in the commercial sector of Kapuskasing. It is an irregular, wedge-shaped building of brick with a corner entrance. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Public Building in Kapuskasing is a Recognized Federal Heritage Building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.

Historical Value:
The Public Building in Kapuskasing is associated with the 1934 Public Works Construction Act (PWCA). The building illustrates the government’s response to the Depression era construction industry crisis. The authorities would often commission private architects and employ local workers during construction to stimulate local economies.

Architectural Value:
The Public Building in Kapuskasing is a good example of a building designed in the Modern Classical style and illustrates the continuing debate between traditionalist and modernizing tendencies in architectural design at this point. It also represents the trend towards smaller, more economical, standard post office designs, and demonstrates a good use of crafts and materials, as seen in the brickwork of the building’s exterior.

Environmental Value:
The Public Building maintains an unchanged relationship to its site and reinforces the business centre of Kapuskasing. It is a familiar local landmark.

Edgar Tumak, Public Building, 22 Circle Street, Kapuskasing, Ontario, Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 89-151; Public Building, 22 Circle Street, Kapuskasing, Ontario. Heritage Character Statement 89-151

Character-Defining Elements

The character-defining elements of the Public Building in Kapuskasing should be respected.

Its Modern Classical style and good quality materials and craftsmanship, for example:
-the simple, classical formality of the single-storey massing, and irregular façade;
-the classically inspired details around the corner entrance, specifically the oeil-de-boeuf window, and the simplified entablature, composed of moulded metal cornice and blank brick frieze;
-the large, regularly spaced windows;
-the exterior walls of patterned brick veneer that suggest classical forms with detailing that is flat and linear.

The manner in which the Public Building maintains an unchanged relationship to its site, reinforces the commercial centre of Kapuskasing and is a prominent local landmark, as evidenced by:
-its modest scale and brick materials that complement the other buildings on the streetscape;
-its ongoing relationship to its siting on a large traffic circle in the main commercial section of the city;
-its visibility and familiarity given its prominent location and ongoing use as a post office, which makes it a well-known building in the area.




Recognition Authority

Government of Canada

Recognition Statute

Treasury Board Heritage Buildings Policy

Recognition Type

Recognized Federal Heritage Building

Recognition Date


Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

1956/01/01 to 1957/01/01

Theme - Category and Type

Function - Category and Type


Office or office building


Architect / Designer

Lucien Leblanc



Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

National Historic Sites Directorate, Documentation Centre, 5th Floor, Room 89, 25 Eddy Street, Gatineau, Quebec

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier




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