Comment 72170

By GerryM (registered) | Posted December 12, 2011 at 15:03:23

Why did the use of stone decline?

All the reasons suggested have some validity. There are now no local quarries producing building stone in Greater Hamilton: the nearest source for dolomite is Wiarton, and some sandstone is still available (at a price!) from the Credit River.

Modern methods of construction use cut stone for facing, not for load bearing in buildings. Older examples included the Pigott and Bank of Montreal buildings, and recent ones can be seen on Wilson Street in Ancaster.

At the time the Dundas Town Hall was built it was (marginally) cheaper to use stone than brick, but the reverse is now true, by a wide margin. And no doubt also cheaper again to use concrete and glass.

A recent article in the G&M pointed out that southern Ontario is even running out of places to quarry crushed stone, at economical prices. To look on the bright side (it is the Season, after all!) perhaps this will stimulated the reuse of old buildings, rather than tearing them down for landfill. Two local examples, in process: the Dundas Post Office, and the Dundas District Public School.

Comment edited by GerryM on 2011-12-12 16:33:35

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