Brutalism in Downtown Ottawa

National Arts Centre, 1969 | Architecture Canada Newsmagazine, October 12, 1970

Saturday, June 23, 2018 - 14:00 to 15:30

In the postwar building boom leading up to Canada's Centennial, grand heroic ideals of civic welfare and cultural identity were translated into new visions for Ottawa. The strong character of brutalist architecture embodied renewed hope, stability, and humanity. Ironically, today many tend to misread these buildings as imposing and inhuman “eyesores.” 

The tour will explore a variety of examples of brutalist projects throughout downtown Ottawa; major and minor, town and crown, public and private, built and unbuilt. These include institutional civic projects; federal, commercial and corporate development; and major urban plans for renewal, infrastructure, and beautification.


GUIDE: Sarah Gelbard, Ph.D. candidate, Urban Planning, McGill University and editor of Spacing Ottawa.


Heritage Ottawa Members: $5  /  Non-Members: $10  ( Payable by cash at start of the tour )


MEET: Oscar Peterson statue at the National Arts Centre
1 Elgin Street, at the northeast corner of Elgin and Albert Streets
Ottawa, ON K1P 5W1