Provincial Law Courts and University Avenue Armouries

The existing Provincial Court House seen here, marks the site of the earlier University Avenue Armouries. The Armouries occupied this site from 1891, until demolished in 1963 to prepare space for the present edifice, which was formally opened September 12, 1966 by the Honourable John Robarts, Premier of Ontario. This is a functional building housing many law courts.

The University Avenue Armouries was opened in May 1894, replacing earlier structures and drill sheds, widely scattered around Toronto. Designed by Thomas Fuller and constructed between 1891 and 1894, the building was considered the finest of its class and, when it opened, was the largest in North America. Of red brick with stonework throughout, it was in the Romanesque style with towers, turrets, and castellations, it resemble a stout British castle. It was one of the most impressive buildings downtown Toronto. Its drill hall rose 72’ from the floor to the roof, and was 125’ by 280’. Here soldiers were trained for service in the Boer War and World Wars I and II. Apart from offices and classrooms, messes, and storage or kit rooms, there were bowling alleys and rifle ranges in the basement.

The information on the Armouries came from “A Glimpse of Toronto’s History” MPLS # 055.