Photos of the Kramer building interiors

May 27, 2008 at 12:16 am 3 comments

They’re low-res scans but the images are spectacular–our first peek inside Clara Kramer’s most notorious Downtown buildings–the Janion, Morley’s and the Northern Junk buildings.

The interiors are surprisingly intact. The Janion interior in particular appears almost as if a good vacuuming and a coat of paint would make it look like it did a century ago. A true historic site.
Donald Luxton & Assoc. via the Times Colonist
The Times Colonist’s Carolyn Heiman has the story:

Staff and consultants entering the buildings had to sign confidentiality agreements before being allowed into them. However, the report spells out in great detail the condition of the buildings, which has been the topic of much rumour — including the suggestion that nothing was left in the Janion, including floors.

The rear of that building is seriously damaged, however, with the roof and floor structure of a two-storey addition now collapsed.

Heritage advocates in the city say they are relieved that the buildings are salvageable — indeed, in better condition than some thought — but are still watching carefully that the city takes steps to ensure that they don’t get any worse.

The city is calling on the owner to conduct the remedial action on the Northern Junk buildings, which are protected under heritage rules, immediately. The work includes making the building rain-tight, removing growth from the masonry, protecting wood trim and repairing masonry.

The city has deferred ordering remedial work on the Janion and Morley’s Sodawater Factory until it concludes a process that would designate them as heritage buildings, a step being taken without the owner’s consent.


The T/C also has this angle on the heritage aspect
, and quotes Nick Russell saying his members would “lie in front of the bulldozers”. Sign me up!

Entry filed under: architecture, urban design.

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3 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Kim  |  July 9, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    do you know of any pictures of the Janion hotel, when it was actually a hotel??? i would love to see some pictures of the interier of the building.
    was the kramer family the original owners of that building from when it was built?

    Reply
  • 2. robertrandall  |  July 9, 2008 at 11:13 pm

    No, Mr. Kramer bought in in the 50s I believe. He used it for storage. I’m not aware of any existing photos of the interior when it was a hotel. It was a hotel for only a few years, I think. My other posts have links to more Janion history.

    A lot of people (including me) have criticized the Kramers but we must remember that the family acquired and maintained this and the other old buildings at a time when it was practically considered a civic duty to demolish old buildings in the name of “urban renewal”.

    Reply
  • 3. Andrew MacKinnon  |  July 30, 2008 at 3:08 pm

    One interesting project done by the Emerging Green Builders of Victoria was an idea for refurbishing the Northern Junk building site into a sustainable mixed use concept. This project, comprising two poster boards featuring the design concept, won honorable mention in the Natural Talent Design Competition at the annual Cascadia Green Building Council’s Living Future Conference in April 08. Anyone interested in seeing their poster boards, let me know and I can arrange to meet you with them.

    Reply

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