UrbanToronto News - the latest headlines
Construction Underway for Tridel's Scala in North York
ALSO


What to do with 24 Sussex Drive?

What to do with 24 Sussex Drive?


  • Total voters
    21

Johnny Au

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
4,825
Likes
644
Location
Near where the boundaries of North York, York, and
#1
I am curious to know what should be done with 24 Sussex Drive.

When Harper was prime minister, he chose to leave it the way it is, despite the fact that it is mouldy, lacks central air conditioning and heating, contains asbestos, and its exterior renovation does not reflect the original architectural style. Oh, and 24 Sussex Drive is among the smallest residences for national heads of government in the G8, so small, visiting dignitaries would rather be entertained in Rideau Hall.

The price of renovating 24 Sussex Drive is rising. The most recent estimate was $15 million in October 2015, as compared with $10 million in 2008.

Some have suggested to demolish 24 Sussex Drive and replace it with a more modern residence, as the existing house is almost structurally unsound and is a heritage building, albeit one not legally bound.
 

Skeezix

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 25, 2007
Messages
4,343
Likes
2,659
Location
East of this, west of that
#3
There are plenty of venues for entertaining dignitaries in Ottawa, no need to demolish 24 Sussex to get more venue space (it's actually perfectly appropriate to be entertaining heads of state at Rideau Hall, rather than 24 Sussex, since the PM is not a head of state, but the GG represents one). 24 Sussex is a lovely old home in a gorgeous setting. Its size and history are perfectly fine for the role it plays. If we are going to spend money on new grandiose spaces, I don't think this is where we should spend it.

Politicians of all stripes over the years have let it slowly deteriorate, as a false economy, so a lot of work needs to be done to the interiors. I've never heard it referred to as structurally unsound (the last major report was Fraser's report in 2008, if I recall correctly, and while she outlined a litany of problems, I don't think she called it structurally unsound). Fix it, modernize it.
 
Joined
Apr 22, 2007
Messages
24,777
Likes
10,789
Location
Toronto
#5
There have been some suggestions that Mike Holmes could host a reality show in 24 Sussex Drive and advertisers would pay for some of the renovations.
Not sure if we should degrade the dignity of a space by turning it into the setting of a reality TV show - and I am not sure who'd benefit more in that case.

AoD
 

Filip

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
Messages
3,496
Likes
836
Location
Београд
#6
Not sure if we should degrade the dignity of a space by turning it into the setting of a reality TV show - and I am not sure who'd benefit more in that case.

AoD
I don't think we'd be degrading the dignity of a run-of-the-mill house, even if it is our PM's residence.

I think it should include some other Canadian stars there.. Definitely the hunky McGillivray, add Holmes, maybe Bryan Baeulmer?

Pros:
- Allowing Canadians to be 'part' of the renovations, for which we are paying for.
- Using known Canadian talent to renovate the residence of the PM.
- Monies from HGTV
- Since all HGTV Canada content seems to go to the States, this should piss them off even more!

Cons:
- ?
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2008
Messages
2,772
Likes
269
Location
Back to East York... Alas!
#7
Turning the PM's residence into a reality show isn't con enough. Jeebus, people no longer have a shred of respect for our political institutions.

Fund 24 Sussex properly. Build the Portrait Gallery in the old US Embassy. Renovate the NAC properly. Do it with my tax dollars. Make the museums free, like London. Make Ottawa a must-see Canadian tourist attraction.
 

Filip

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 24, 2007
Messages
3,496
Likes
836
Location
Београд
#8
Turning the PM's residence into a reality show isn't con enough. Jeebus, people no longer have a shred of respect for our political institutions.

Fund 24 Sussex properly. Build the Portrait Gallery in the old US Embassy. Renovate the NAC properly. Do it with my tax dollars. Make the museums free, like London. Make Ottawa a must-see Canadian tourist attraction.
No because our political institutions don't deserve our respect. Sorry to put it so bluntly but I say things the way I see them.
 

Johnny Au

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
4,825
Likes
644
Location
Near where the boundaries of North York, York, and
#11
I am actually neutral about the idea about having Holmes et al. renovate 24 Sussex Drive. I came up with that idea after reading online comments about 24 Sussex Drive with similar suggestions as a way to have private money (mainly from advertisers) pay for some of the renovation cost, but it would lead to cheap commercialization of publicly-owned property.

Such a reality show could be aired on HGTV Canada or on W.

If this were to be successful, then we could see spinoff series featuring renovations to 10 Downing Street, the White House, or The Lodge.
 
Joined
Apr 29, 2008
Messages
2,772
Likes
269
Location
Back to East York... Alas!
#12
A renovation TV series isn't disrespectful. They aren't going to be swimming through pools of slime to determine who works on what room.
Seriously, not to get all 'Freshcutgrass' about this, but we're not talking about a respectful BBC documentary of the raising of the Gaudi cathedral, we're talking a couple of beefy contractors taking sledgehammers to walls and whingeing that they didn't insulate properly in the 1900s.

Getting a heritage reconstruction expert and, maybe, a renowned architect to re-imagine the space, sure. But 'Holmes on homes'? Talk about LCD! Why not just slap an orange Home Depot sign on the side, to, you know, 'pay for reconstruction'. The pettiness of low taxes uber alles continues to amaze.
 

smably

Active Member
Joined
Jun 26, 2009
Messages
821
Likes
1,432
#13
Yeah, renovating the prime minister's residence on TV would be tacky as hell. Let's not do that...
 

junctionist

Senior Member
Joined
May 1, 2007
Messages
8,155
Likes
1,203
Location
The Junction, Toronto
#14
Architecturally, the house is boring on the exterior and has little iconic value compared to the White House or similar residences of heads of state. I'd reuse it for a different purpose and find a grander and more iconic house for the Prime Minister. Surely that boring faux Georgian facade isn't the best we can do.
 

Johnny Au

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 4, 2010
Messages
4,825
Likes
644
Location
Near where the boundaries of North York, York, and
#15
Here is a clarification: the Prime Minister is just head of government, not head of state. Canada's head of state officially lives in Windsor Castle and in Buckingham Palace. Her representative lives in Rideau Hall (and the actual Canadian head of state would make Rideau Hall her official residence whenever she visits Ottawa on an official visit).

Rideau Hall is much grander than 24 Sussex Drive for a reason.