Canadian National Railways Station

Heritage Railway Station of Canada

Senneterre, Quebec
Exterior photo (© (S.D. Bronson, August 1994.))
Exterior photo
(© (S.D. Bronson, August 1994.))
Address : 4th St. West, Senneterre, Quebec

Recognition Statute: Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act (R.S.C., 1985, c. 52 (4th Supp.))
Designation Date: 1995-11-24
  • 1953 to 1953 (Construction)

Research Report Number: RS-260

Description of Historic Place

The Canadian National Railways Station at Senneterre is a two-storey, International-style railway station, built in 1953. It is located in the town of Senneterre, in the Abitibi region of northwestern Quebec. The formal recognition is confined to the railway station building itself.

Heritage Value

The Canadian National Railways (CNR) Station at Senneterre reflects the important role of the railway in the colonization and development of the Abitibi region of northwestern Quebec. Constructed to replace an earlier station destroyed by fire, the Senneterre station reflects the ambitions of the CNR and its commitment to Senneterre’s role as the centre of an expanding rail system in the Abitibi region. It reflects a period of growth for both Senneterre and the Abitibi region.

The Senneterre station is a good example of an International-style railway station built during the post-war era. Its modern design reflects the CNR’s progressive ideals during the period.

The station retains its relationship with the railway tracks and with the repair and maintenance shops located across the track west of the station. It remains a focal point of Senneterre due to its function and to its physical alignment with the town’s main north-south artery.

Sources: Heritage Character Statement, Canadian National Railways, Senneterre, Québec, March 26, 1996; Susan D. Bronson, Railway Station Report 260, Canadian National Railways Station, Senneterre, Québec.

Character-Defining Elements

Character-defining elements of the Canadian National Railways Station at Senneterre include: its International-style massing, proportions, and materials its block-like massing, consisting of a low-lying, one-storey, rectangular structure; a smaller, second-storey block above; a wall extending above the parapet to provide a towerlike signpost; a one-storey block that identifies the main entrance from the town side; and a windowed rectangular operator’s bay its flat roofs the elegantly tapered, cantilevered canopy which provides a continuous shelter around the building the horizontal emphasis created by: the long, low massing of the building; the continuous canopy; the concrete base with brick above; the thin strip of flashing capping the walls; and the pattern of fenestration the use of smooth, modern materials, consisting of: a horizontal concrete base; smooth red brick cladding above; and granite cladding on the entrance block its fenestration, consisting of: continuous horizontal windows extending from the concrete base to the underside of the canopy (in the public spaces); single lights installed just below the canopy (in the service rooms); three-light-high, single or double width windows, sometimes combined with a door (in the offices and work areas); and single, double, and triple width windows framed by a horizontal concrete band (on the upper floor) its reinforced concrete construction and brick and stone cladding surviving original interior finishes and fixtures in the waiting room and restaurant, including: pale yellow glazed tiles; pink terrazzo floors; and fluorescent strip lighting