Buildings have stories; whether through histories, owners, and timelines, every layer reveals something new, unfolding the character of who we are, but also reminding us of what we are apart of. For some buildings, the story is short, peppered with a few owners, and leading to an eventual demise. Other buildings are treasured, engrained in the city fabric, iconic and intrinsic; simply awaiting their next revival.
62 Sparks Street in Ottawa, Ontario has been the location of one such story. A story that began in 1869 with its conception as a jewellery store. Specializing in the sale of watches, jewellery, and cutlery, the store was very successful and thrived in its location. By 1900, the original owner had sold his company and the store was relocated to another space on Sparks Street presenting an opportunity for a new story to unfold with the Imperial Bank of Canada, who acquired the space to open their new Ottawa Branch.
Today, 62 Sparks will be the next site to contribute to Ottawa’s progressive restaurant scene. The design for the space will take visual cues from the existing heritage fabric while introducing a fresh approach to layout and spatial experience. Materials will be both contemporary and timeless, evoking feelings of familiarity and comfort in a space of grandeur. The design celebrates the existing building by using shifting scales to amplify features like the high ceilings while keeping its guests grounded in relaxed and approachable seating. The familiar banking elements will also take on new life as they are reprogrammed to take the users behind the scenes and celebrate the beauty of its original functionality.
Photography -- Archer Baldo