Power Cottage

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Power Cottage  Halifax, NS

Halifax Regional Municipality

The Power Cottage was designed by architect J.C. Dumaresq in 1902, as a residence for the Superintendent of the Halifax Public Gardens, James Power. The building features unique architecture elements with metal work components available from a catalogue. An exterior envelope assessment was undertaken in 2011, but only a new roof was acted upon. A tender to repair the masonry, metalwork and woodwork was started in 2013, but quickly put on hold when serious rot, fungal and structural deterioration was uncovered.


The scope of work was expanded and the project was re-tendered in 2014 as a complete restoration of the exterior envelope. During this work, all the brick was removed and rebuilt. Toxic mould and asbestos were found in the exterior walls and were remediated. The extensive rot uncovered in the balloon frame structure was removed and repaired. The foundation was also found to be structurally unsound and was rebuilt with improved detailing. The original wood windows were conserved where possible and the others were replaced with a historically appropriate wood window. During the work, several layers of metalwork were removed from the facade, resulting in many discussions about which layer to restore.


Through collaboration with HRM's Conservator/Consultant, any original material that could be reasonably kept was reintegrated into the restored envelope. Lost original details were also reinstated wherever appropriate, such as the curve of the front stair and the historic colour scheme that included a black mortar. The final product subtly incorporates improved construction details to ensure the building's longevity and brings it up to current building code requirements while restoring the heritage character of this grand home.



2016 Lieutenant Governor's Design Awards in Architecture