Residence Building 5

Classified Federal Heritage Building

Saint Andrews, New Brunswick
Residence Building 5 Classified Federal Heritage Building (© Fisheries and Oceans, 1998)
Exterior Photo
(© Fisheries and Oceans, 1998)
Address : Brandy Cove Road, Saint Andrews Biological Station, Saint Andrews, New Brunswick

Recognition Statute: Treasury Board Policy on Management of Real Property
Designation Date: 1998-09-10
  • 1908 to 1908 (Construction)

Other Name(s):
  • Residence Building 5  (Designation Name)
Custodian: Fisheries and Oceans Canada
FHBRO Report Reference: 97-103
DFRP Number: 56247 00

Description of Historic Place

The Residence at St Andrews consists of a large L shaped building of three-and-one-half storeys with wide cross-gambrel roof The exterior walls of the building are completely sheathed in cedar shingles. A glazed porch protects the main entrance. The Residence sits at the base of a well treed hillside overlooking Passamaquoddy Bay. The designation is confined to the footprint of the building.

Heritage Value

The Residence at St. Andrews is a Classified Federal Heritage building because of its historical associations, and its architectural and environmental values.

Historical Value:
The Residence illustrates the theme of Canada’s early commitment to research, management and husbandry of its marine resources. Concern for Canadian fisheries goes back to the beginning of confederation, and programmes of environmental controls and aquaculture were immediately launched to counteract the already recognized- problem of dwindling fish stocks, it was soon apparent that systematic scientific investigation would have to be undertaken to address the root causes. The establishment of St. Andrews Biological Station and the Pacific Biological Station at
Nanaimo in 1908 was the result of much lobbying on this subject by the Canadian scientific community. Many pioneering and distinguished scientists resided here including Dr. J. J. R. Macleod, who with Frederick Banting won the Nobel prize for the treatment of diabetes with insulin.

Architectural Value:
The Residence is a good example of the shingle style, the structure is wood framed with wooden sheathing under cedar shingle cladding. The building illustrates attractive proportions, colours and detailing, and features to be considered a good example of the shingle style. Constructed of good quality materials and craftsmanship the residence is well built.

Environmental Value:
The environmental importance of the building is due to its natural setting within the campus of the station, and its significance as the oldest surviving building. The campus consists of buildings of mixed architectural styles types dating from 1908 to the 1970s. The residence sits at the base of a wooded hillside with views to Passamaquoddy Bay and the fish-holding facility.

Mattie Heritage Enterprises, St. Andrews Biological Station, Brandy Cove Road, St. Andrews, New Brunswick. Federal Heritage Buildings Review Office Report 97-103.

Residence, St. Andrews Biological Station, Brandy Cove Road, St Andrews, N.B. Heritage Character Statement 97-103.

Character-Defining Elements

The following character-defining elements of the Residence should be respected, for example:

Its shingle style inspired design and good quality materials and craftsmanship as evidenced in:
the simple, L shaped massing. the three and one-half storey form of the building. the wide cross-gambrel roof. the wood framing, sheathing and cedar shingle cladding. the decorative details.

The manner in which the building reinforces the picturesque character of the waterfront setting as evidenced in:
Its scenic location on a waterfront parcel of land at the base of a wooded hillside.

Heritage Character Statement

Disclaimer - The heritage character statement was developed by FHBRO to explain the reasons for the designation of a federal heritage building and what it is about the building that makes it significant (the heritage character). It is a key reference document for anyone involved in planning interventions to federal heritage buildings and is used by FHBRO in their review of interventions.

The Residence was constructed in 1908, the inaugural year of the St. Andrews Biological Station's operation. It was originally built to house the scientists working at the secluded station, and offer them a library with a reading/sitting room and personal study spaces in each bedroom. It also contained a dining room. The original architect is unknown. In 1923, a major addition was designed by Charles Bruce, Chief Engineer of the Department of Fisheries. By 1944, the Residence was converted to work space. The building is currently used as work and meeting space by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans. See FHBRO Building Report 97-103.

Reasons for Designation

The Residence has been designated Classified because of its historical associations, its architectural significance and also for environmental reasons.

The three-and-one-half storey Residence was built in 1908 to serve as the summer quarters for the staff and visiting distinguished scientists. Much of the scientists' work was done in the Residence's library and reading/sitting room, stimulating personal alliances and new ideas. As a result, the Residence is closely linked to the early work of Canada's fisheries research.

Many pioneering and distinguished scientists resided here, among them: Dr. J.J.R. MacLeod, who with Frederick Banting won the Nobel prize for the treatment of diabetes with insulin; Dr. V.A. Huard, who was widely published and was editor of le Naturaliste canadien; Dr. Archibald Knight, credited with inducing the government to establish the St. Andrews and Nanaimo biological stations; Dr. Archibald Macallum, who became the first chairman of the National Research Council, and later was the head of the Biochemistry Department at McGill University.

The Residence is a good example of the Shingle style, a style developed around 1880 and popular into the early decades of the 20th century.

The environmental importance of the building is due to its natural setting within the campus of the station, its location near the operative area of the station, and its significance as the oldest surviving building. The Residence sits at the base of the well-treed hillside, with views to Passamaquoddy Bay and of the operations of the laboratory and fish-holding facility.

Character Defining Elements

The heritage character of the Residence resides in its well-executed Shingle style design and in its setting near the base of a treed hillside overlooking the water and the operational components of the station.

With its wide cross-gambrel roof and three-and-one-half storey form, the Residence has a striking presence with a human scale achieved through texture and detailing. The sensitive 1923 addition greatly enlarged the functional space, and the commodious two storey verandah added a gathering place for social and academic functions. Rustic features elaborate the building's simple L-shaped massing. The arrangement/grouping of windows on the 1923 addition contrasts with, yet complements the conservative arrangement of windows on the visible original front facade of what is now a slightly recessed rear wing. The two-storey 1923 verandah, no longer extant, was an important feature that enhanced the building's connection to the ground, eased the transition between interior and exterior spaces, and softened the link between the informal 1923 and formal 1908 front facades.

The Residence's wood framing and sheathing with cedar cladding complement the natural surroundings of its hillside location. The detail in the first and second floor windows, the arrangements of the window and door openings, the natural colour and texture of the materials contribute to the residential character of the building. These elements, characteristic of the Shingle style, should be protected and maintained. With reference to existing, and future, alterations and appendages, the precedents of colour, proportion and material should be respected. Man made materials such as PVC should be resisted, and traditional approaches to meeting requirements (example, wood storm windows to improve thermal performance) should be continued.

The interior spaces of the Residence have retained some of their original components such as wooden ceilings with boxed beams and panelling between; several panelled doors; the original fireplaces in the sitting room and the dining room; and the windows with their hardware. All of these should be maintained as important elements.

The site is heavily wooded, contributing to the residential character, which should be protected.

For further guidance, please refer to the FHBRO Code of Practice.