8. Firehall No. 15 (1913) [saved]

Single Top 10

2005 Top10 Watch List

8. Firehall No. 15 (1913) [saved]
Firehall No. 15 (1914)

Concern for Firehall No. 15 persists: it’s the last remaining of its kind still in use, as Firehall No. 13 was demolished in 2002.

Built in 1913, Firehall No. 15 features extensive interior woodwork, ornate pressed-metal ceilings, and the original brass pole.

The hose towers and distinctive bracketed eaves of these Craftsman-influenced structures were once familiar landmarks in neighbourhoods across the city.

An RFP has been issued for designs for a replacement firehall on the same site. But to demolish the existing building would be wasteful and unnecessary – it could easily be re-located across the street in Renfrew Park, perhaps adjacent to the library or at the old wading pool.

The old Marpole Firehall saw new life as the Marpole Place Seniors’ Centre; surely Firehall No. 15 could make a similar contribution to its community.


Update May 19, 2006: Council is now considering options for a replacement hall, and Firehall No. 15 is now under serious threat of being demolished. HV has sent a new letter to city hall.

Update August 3, 2006: On July 20, 2006, Vancouver City Council approved the retension of the firehall on the current site, for incorporation/attachment to a new fire hall facility, and funds will be allocated for a full restoration of the building.

Update February 26, 2007: In a sudden backtrack of last year’s vote to save the firehall, city hall is once again voting on it’s fate, on Thursday, March 1. The internal recommendations are to demolish the building, and build new. As of Wednesday evening, the online petition to save the building has received 361 signatures in favour of retention. We await the decision…again.

Update May 9, 2009: Council has approved retention of one of Vancouver’s last Edwardian-era firehalls. Despite our support of this initiative, we wish to express grave concerns about the potential approach to this restoration as described in the Staff Report. The description of the exterior work indicates a serious disregard of Heritage Standards & Guidelines, specifically the destruction of exterior features and their replication through the application of a new rain screen façade. It is too early in the project to make sweeping decisions about the approach to restoration. We strongly suggest that before any decisions are made, that there be sufficient investigation of the condition of exterior materials, and that every effort be made to retain, rather than replace, the historic exterior fabric.

Update May 12, 2012: Success! After appearing on our Top 10 Endangered Sites list for five times over the last dozen years, starting in 2001, the grand old lady Firehall #15 has a full new lease on life, restored, looking better than original (if possible!), and incorporated into a new firehall. It’s grand re-opening was held May 12, 2012, just shy of it’s 100th year birthday.