Saturday, September 12, 2015

Pyramids And Cones

I'm starting off a series of sorts from a visit I made in August, heading into the neighbourhood of New Edinburgh. It's on the far side of the Rideau River here, near the end of the river's course. The foundations you see in the river are those of a former bridge; other bridges are now close by, upstream and downstream.

This is the downstream bridge, the Minto Bridge, which steps onto Green Island. Here the Rideau River divides into two for its final stretch.

The John Diefenbaker Building takes up part of Green Island. Named after one of our prime ministers, the building houses extra staff from the department of Foreign Affairs, which is headquartered in the Pearson Building just west of here. The Diefenbaker Building was the former Ottawa City Hall, up until the turn of the century. The architecture would get Dan Brown speculating for a new novel (perhaps Robert Langdon learns the Group of Seven were hiding a dark secret in their paintings that leads to the pyramids on this island and the truth about the Maple Syrup Cabal).

This reflecting pool can be found here, with two sculptures perched within. One is a man inside a portion of a rocket, while the other features a polar bear perched on a pyramid, once again combining the pyramid and cones motif of the architecture.

Out on the north side of the island, in this park, we have a front view of the complex. I'll be back in this park to show you what's here, including where the river meets its end, but that'll be when I conclude this series.


  1. Quite a contrast: the bridge with its gingerbread and the austere but elegant architecture. And to top it off, we have a polar bear!

  2. Are you going to write a book about Ottawa ...? (kidding),


  3. What a great way to start the day with these great scenes. The first one looks like a place the czar's family would have retreated for the summer.


  4. You're not wrong William, that building would make a fantastic backdrop to a spy movie!

  5. You've captured some interesting architecture today. Like the bridge shot. Is it iron?

  6. The kind of architecture I like...

  7. What a great city! So full of interesting and intriguing stuff. Lots of stories here and you seem to know many if not most of them. Merci!

  8. @Linda: it's a very pleasant spot!

    @Tomas: I'm starting to think of a coffee table book!

    @Janis: thanks!

    @Grace: it's such unusual architecture!

    @Birdman: I believe it is iron.

    @VP: so different from the Gothic styles we see here.

    @Marleen: they certainly are.

    @Lowell: New Edinburgh, where I'll be taking you over the next few days, has not been so familiar to me.

  9. There is some truly interesting architecture here!

  10. definitely some interesting/odd architecture symbols! loved that white bridge, though.

  11. Wonderful architecture in these photos of the buildings.

  12. I love photographing old iron bridges like the Minto. All painted in white makes it special.

  13. You've jumped through a few hoops on these photos and added some history and explanation.

  14. The architects were sure into triangular shapes!

  15. Wow you're right, it could lead to a great writing prompt. You could help authors everywhere with these type of interesting photos. I'd buy your book! My mom had a thing for pyramids and she seemed kind of mysterious about it. She even wore a gold pyramid around her neck at one time. Does it represent perfect design? She was an engineer. I am stumped but fascinated. Especially with the polar bear balancing on one.

  16. The white bridge looks rather lacy and quite pretty, actually.

  17. @Sharon: indeed!

    @Tex: it's a quiet bridge on a weekend, but I imagine much busier during the week when the building's fully in use.

    @Linda: it's so different from the usual architecture in the city.

    @Andy: this one really stands out nicely. I've only been on it a couple of times.

    @Red: and more of that to come in the next few posts!

    @RedPat: they certainly were.

    @Eve: I think pyramids fascinated me early on- it's the Egyptian connection.

    @EG: it does, at that.

  18. Interesting melange of architecture!


  19. That all very space age compared to some of the older buildings...

  20. You should post that photo on Dan Brown's Facebook page. The Maple Syrup Cabal...I like that!

  21. Some amazing architecture here! Nice shots.

  22. What a contrast between the old bridge and the modern architecture, I like both.

  23. @Cloudia: I thought so too!

    @Geoff: it's very different- the architecture dates back from the 50s in its core.

    @Linda: thank you!

    @Mari: I think so- I like the unusual style.

    @Norma: alas, I'm still on the outs with Facebook!

    @Kay: thank you!

    @Jan: me too.

  24. My dad going way back was a John D,Baker reader of his books.

    Wow that white large bridge is beautiful!

  25. This complex is a stunning, unique design. The white bridge is is quite grand too.

  26. @Carolann: it is indeed.

    @Karl: thank you!

    @Whisk: just a bit.

    @Hamilton: you're welcome.

    @Gemma: I should get up there sometime soon.