422 Esplanade Avenue in downtown Ladysmith was built circa 1903 as the Telephone Office. It is now a restaurant.
422 Eslanade Avenue was added to the Ladysmith Community Heritage Registry in 2017.
Here is a map showing the location of 422 Esplanade Avenue:
Here is a Google Street View image of 422 Esplanade Avenue:
Description of Historic Place
The Old Telephone Office Building is a small, vernacular, Boomtown style building located on the main highway through Ladysmith, British Columba. The historic place is confined to the building footprint.
The Old Telephone Office Building has housed numerous commercial ventures over the years but it is most significant as the long-time location of the local telephone exchange, a key community service.
Built around 1903, the Old Telephone Office Building is a very good example of a vernacular Boomtown or false-front style structure. Until the construction of more sophisticated brick buildings over the next few decades, Ladysmith’s first commercial buildings were typically wood framed and clad, and false-fronted. Boomtown fronts made buildings appear more substantial and provided a convenient space for signage.
The building has had many renovations over the years, but its basic form and scale remain intact.
As the only remaining building of its type in this part of Ladysmith and because of its location on the main highway, the Old Telephone Office building is a significant landmark.
The character-defining elements of the Old Telephone Office Building include:
- – all of the elements of its vernacular Boomtown architecture as expressed in the wood siding, Boomtown false-front facade, and simple single door and large window arrangement
- – the building’s small scale, simple form and massing
- – the building’s location on the main highway
- – the building’s continuous commercial use for over a century