The Building

Architectural Marvel

Called the “Chemical” by local residents, the Donald Chemical Distribution Building is the last remaining in-tact building of the Standard Chemical Company in Canada. Commissioned by Richard A. Donald the chemical plant was built in 1908 for a sum of $1M by Westinghouse Engineering. The reinforced concrete building is architecturally unique and an engineering marvel. It is the first building in Canada to use chain reinforcement for roofing; it boasted the first concrete raised water tower in North America; has notable features of high tensile steel from Oneida in its columns; flint limestone brick from Fenelon falls used in the infill; highly dense concrete made from sand on-site; and displays a unique gable roof. Only three other industrial concrete buildings of this era exist in Ontario. The building is also markedly unique in a primarily natural landscape.