Interesting Building : The Bank of Commerce

My camera and I found ourselves in Toronto’s Financial District recently, where I had a flashback to my first year after graduation from university when I was tasked with going to the head-office of the Canadian Bank of Commerce to arrange a bank draft. My eyes must have been as big as saucers as I walked into the massive lobby of this gorgeous building, and then nervously conducted some business at a special business teller.

zzzpp … Fast-forward back to the present .. On my recent visit I didn’t enter the building but admired it from outside. Before I show you my photographs I wanted to show you this cool vintage one of the building that I found.

There is a historical sign attached to the building (located on King Street, just west of Yonge, on the south side) which describes it : Construction began in 1929 and was completed in 1931. It is 34 stories tall, and was designed by the foremost New York bank architects of the era. It boasts “Romanesque Revival detailing and a vaulted Main Banking Hall said to be modeled after Rome’s Baths of Caracalla”. There is apparently an outdoor observation gallery on the 32nd floor, which I am very curious to try to check out in the spring. At the time it was built it was the tallest building in the British Empire.

In my pictures you can recognize it as the pale cream coloured building, which is now overshadowed by the taller modern ones surrounding it. To put things in perspective because it’s hard to tell from the ground, the black building down the street in the second picture is 72 stories tall (versus 34 stories).

Thanks for taking a look.
If you are interested in seeing more of my looks at historic buildings in Toronto, please take a look within my category called “Interesting Buildings”.

xo loulou