Ottawa City Hall always participates in Doors Open. The property includes a provincial courthouse, but the city's operations are run out of the modern wing and this building, called the Heritage Building. Constructed from 1874-75, it started its life as the Ottawa Normal School, a teacher college, and is in the late Victorian style. Numerous offices are inside, including the mayor's office. This view looks from the southwest on Elgin, with the Canadian Human Rights Monument in the foreground. The area you see in front of the building has been designated Nelson Mandela Square.
These days, the first floor hosts the Ottawa Sports Hall Of Fame in the area beyond the lobby entrance, with a wealth of photographs of local athletes down through time adorning the walls, and display cases with athletic gear from various sports.
Heading upstairs, the path led to the exterior reception area outside the mayor's office and an adjoining conference room. This seal of the city, done in a three dimensional way, is mounted on the brick.
Inside the conference room, I photographed this set of flags- Canada, Ontario, Ottawa, and the flag for the Franco-Ontarian community.
The city of Ottawa has over time amassed a sizeable collection of art, much of it in the Ottawa Art Gallery (I will have to take you into its new quarters at some point down the line), but some of it dispersed in city offices like this one. Part of that collection comes from the Firestone family, who were particularly drawn to the works of the Group of Seven and willed their art to the city. This painting here in the conference room is one of those. Lawren Harris painted Algoma Country in 1923, an oil painting of the area in northern Ontario north of Sault St. Marie.
Here we have another Group of Seven oil painting, this one in the mayor's office, also from the Firestone collection. A.Y. Jackson painted Autumn, Muskoka #2 in 1937.
Another item here in the mayor's office was this map, showing how big the city actually is- the cities of Calgary, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver combined still come up short in total land area compared to Ottawa. Mind you, much of Ottawa is technically rural, with eight hundred thousand people mostly in the city sectors, surrounded by greenbelt and farmland to the edges of the former region of Ottawa-Carleton, a legacy of amalgamation.
Here we have the mayor's desk, with views out onto Elgin Street. A comfortable spot to work from. Our mayor, Jim Watson, is an affable fellow, running for re-election in October, with no serious competion in the field.
One of the bookshelves has a series of photographs of people (and one panda) the mayor has greeted over the years. There's more than what you see here, but I photographed one section. They include musicians like Bono, Paul McCartney, and Paul Anka, and world figures like President Obama and the Duchess of Cambridge. Good lord, I miss Obama.