77 James Street North (Hamilton) | ?m | 30s | Harlo | srm Architects

Amare

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IIRC the city does own the Jackson square land, it’s just leased on a 99 year term to the landlord.
I stand corrected, you're correct the city does own the Jackson Square land itself and holds some pretty substantial power as to what can be done with it:


They really need to raise the issue of revitalizing the entire area. It seems siilly to me they would focus on First Ontario Centre, First Ontario Concert Hall, and the Hamilton Convention Centre; while keeping Jackson Square untouched. Different owners and entities involved of course, but there needs to be a master plan for that entire section of the core.
 

CanadianNational

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Being somewhat familiar with the area, I think this plan - though better than the first draft - is still lacking.
From the renderings, the buildings look a bit podgy in advance. The four towers are indistinguishable from one another, which will make the views of the thing look lumpen from any distance.
There seems to be very little redeeming about the continuous bricked base. Although as xy3 noted, it's good to see more than just one or two floors of it, making the podium more substantial, I don't see any evidence of delight, esprit, variety nor special detailing in it that might make it truly appealing. The ground-floor retail looks low and unremarkable, the floors above it just a slightly alternating mash of a few types of window/balcony combinations set into an essentially flat wall. That doesn't bode well, and I hope I'm wrong. Otherwise, we might be praying for galloping ivy.
More variety and careful detailing at street level is needed. A few of the towers need to be differentiated from the others, not just by finishes and form, but by height as well.

It is also a huge shame that the former Eaton Centre's clock tower doesn't seem to survive into this incarnation. That should be rectified, as it was one of the few good things about the 'Janet' Jackson Square addition (as my dyke friends used to call it, due to its frills - this was the '80's, after all).
It was meant to reference the Old City Hall that used to stand on the site, and I thought the clock faces had heritage designation of some sort.
It should be retained.


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A pic of mine from a few years back, taken from the Library:
 

ShonTron

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The Hamilton Eaton Centre was built in two parts when the new store was opened in 1989, the old store was quickly demolished to make way for the mall. The old store had a direct connection to Jackson Square.

This video is really interesting as it shows the store in its last weeks of operation – including old elevators with attendants – and the demolition work afterwards.

 

CanadianNational

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The existing 'join' between Jackson Square and the former Eaton Centre addition.
Never in my life have I ever thought I'd defend that Po-Mo folly, but on the face of it, I fear the existing brickwork is far superior to what the new development will deliver. There's no reason why a facadectomy and better decorative insets couldn't work here, along the James Street North face, at least. It would also work in favour of keeping the existing clocktower, which I think is an asset.

Some pics of mine, from last spring:

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From the roof of Jackson Square, looking east.
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From near the same spot, looking north.
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These last two pictures are anonymous pictures from the 'web, of the James Street North facade.
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anon

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anon
 
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3Dementia

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The existing 'join' between Jackson Square and the former Eaton Centre addition.
Never in my life have I ever thought I'd defend that Po-Mo folly, but on the face of it, I fear the existing brickwork is far superior to what the new development will deliver. There's no reason why a facadectomy and better decorative insets couldn't work here, along the James Street North face, at least. It would also work in favour of keeping the existing clocktower, which I think is an asset.
I kinda agree that at least saving the pomo clock tower could have been looked at, especially given its small footprint.

And since it's a nod to Hamilton's historic City Hall clock tower... saving it would give a nod to both the City Centre mall and the original clock tower.

So two nods... for the price of one. 🕟
 

ShonTron

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I kinda agree that at least saving the pomo clock tower could have been looked at, especially given its small footprint.

And since it's a nod to Hamilton's historic City Hall clock tower... saving it would give a nod to both the City Centre mall and the original clock tower.

So two nods... for the price of one. 🕟

The clocks in that tower are the clocks from the old city hall, actually.
 

macro

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It would be so nice if someone could tackle a 3D model of hamilton’s projects the same way Koops65 has been doing for Toronto. Just to give perspective on how many developments are coming the the core, here’s a quick doodle over a Google earth screenshot of some buildings that are soon to be/newly constructed. Orange is the LRT route:

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innsertnamehere

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It would be so nice if someone could tackle a 3D model of hamilton’s projects the same way Koops65 has been doing for Toronto. Just to give perspective on how many developments are coming the the core, here’s a quick doodle over a Google earth screenshot of some buildings that are soon to be/newly constructed. Orange is the LRT route:

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@ericmacm has created a 3D model of Hamilton. You can see more images in the thread here:


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Lachlan Holmes

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I stopped by on the last day of operation, Saturday, and grabbed a few final photos, and a video of the bell ringing for the last time. The CBC article linked above stated that it hadn't been rung in over a decade, I would suggest probably more - I cannot recall hearing it ring even once before Saturday, in all the time I've lived in downtown Hamilton.

As you'll see in the photos below, which were all taken around 4:15 to 4:45, there was a pretty limited number of people wandering around the mall, most of which seemed to be just taking everything in for a last time. Despite the low numbers, however, I would say it was an above average number of people in the mall, which really just highlights how much the City Centre struggled over the past many years.

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