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Grey Bruce Property Rentals submitted an application on July 16 for a facade grant from the City to remove the existing facade of a heritage building on 2nd Ave East and replace the door, siding and windows. This comes to council tonight.

According to the staff report "Due to the timing of Committee meetings and the applicant’s time constraints, the
application is being brought forward to Council directly for approval. The applicant is proposing to start work immediately."

parkersOne of the featues of the building listed in the City's heritage are the glass transoms from the original Parker Pharmacy. These do not fit in the proposed renovation plan, so the staff are recommending their re-use somewhere in the property.

"That all efforts shall be made by the Owner to salvage andreuse the glass transoms above the existing entry doors in the construction on site either as decorative or functional components of the property. Any works associated with the adaptive reuse of the glass transoms on site would be considered eligible for grant funding."

The commercial building is currently vacant, and has been eligible for a 30% municipal property tax rebate.

From the City's heritage registry.

Originally the home of Owen Sound's first telegraph and telephone exchange, this building later became Parker's Drugstore, part of Upper Canada's (Ontario) first drugstore chain. Two apothecary chemists named Henry Parker and Mr. Cattle met on a ship bringing them to Canada from their native England. En route they decided to go into business together and when they reached the New World they established the Parker & Cattle Drugstore. The pharmacy and drug store opened at this locationin 1856.

Henry opened a branch in Durham in 1860. His brothers, S.J. (Stephen Johnston) and Joseph W. Parker looked after branches in Owen Sound, Goderich and Paris, Ontario. The company was reorganized in 1869 under the name of Parker & Co. S.J. Parker was a treasurer of the Country of Grey, president of Grey Bruce Loan and Savings Co.,president of the Board of Trade (the forerunner to the Chamber of Commerce), and chair of the Owen Sound General and Marine Hospital, among other things. He was also one of the group of businessmen who brought watervorks, telephone, electricity and gas services to the city.

The Parker brothers constructed what is now the Farmers' Market building in 1868 to house the waterworks. This date marked the first time utilities had been provided to the town. The waterworks operated as a private venture until 1890 when the it became a public utility. S.J.'s nephew, "Gentleman John" Parker was involved in many of the same organizations and community causes. He also had a connection to journalism and history as editor of Druggists Weekly and the first president of the Owen Sound Historical Society.

The words "Parker's" and "Toiletries" are still visible in the glass above the entrance doorway. This handsome three-storey commercial terrace features intricate brickwork in contrasting colours of pink and buff, diagonally-laid brick on the façade separating the upper floors, and brick pilasters rising to theroof line between sets of paired windows with brick arches and central keystones.


 

 

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