Kingston City Hall to undergo fire and safety maintenance – Kingston

Kingston City Hall is preparing for overdue fire and security maintenance, but its status as a National Historic Site means workers on the Ontario Street landmark must be careful.

Greg Newman is the city’s political planning manager. He says installing new fire alarms and sprinklers throughout the 1840s listed building, including the Memorial Hall, is a daunting task.

“Fortunately, we have a suspended ceiling in Memorial Hall that allows us to install most of the infrastructure behind the ceiling ourselves, so we have very discreet openings to let sprinkler heads through,” Newman said.

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Maintenance must be performed to comply with current Ontario building codes and fire regulations. External fixes are also on the agenda. Newman says stairs used for emergency exits in the north and south wings of the building are in disrepair and need to be repaired.

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“It is obvious that the stone itself is damaged in the stairwell and it is important that we deal with the stone because with every heavy rainfall we experience … water in the town hall basement.”

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That’s not good for the aging building. Recent rains that seeped through the limestone steps have affected the stone arches under both stairs. According to Newman, the ultimate goal is to hide the infrastructure as much as possible while preserving the historical attributes of the extraordinary building.

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