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Assembly Hall

Assembly Hall, May 2011.

Hospital Designation, 1889: [n/a]
Hospital Designation, 1959: Assembly Hall
Hospital Designation, 1975: Assembly Hall
Current Designation: Assembly Hall Community Cultural Centre.

Constructed in 1898 (although another source suggests 1897), its chief functions were to provide a place of religious worship and entertainment for the patients, which took place in the main auditorium on the second floor. The events included physical exercises, plays, dances and other activities. The Hall also contained a work area. The auditorium on the second floor (accessible by four separate staircases, which led to the entrance doors), was designed to have a stage at one end and a chancel at the other. There was no permanent sitting, and thus different types of functions could easily be accommodated.

A storehouse, store keeper’s office, boiler room, and coal vaults occupied the main floor. A new stores facility, located on the ground floor, was constructed in 1899. In the 1950s, the building was fireproofed. As part of this process, steel stairs were added and the auditorium was provided with new equipment. The ground floor was replanned and rearranged, and a new beauty parlour and space for occupational therapy, and refrigeration equipment. Completely restored and re-opened in 2000 as the Assembly Hall Community Cultural Centre. In 2002, an art installment entitled Third Garden (by Millie Chen and Warren Quigley), was unveiled.

Address: 1 Colonel Samuel Smith Park Drive.

Gallery

References

Anonymous. “History of Ontario Hospital, New Toronto, Henceforth to be Known as Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital” [Unpublished, written by an unnamed patient with assistant of John Sutherland, Chief Attendant, c. 1964].
Humber College Institute of Technology & Advanced Learning. Humber Lakeshore Campus Plans. Accessed January 30, 2011.
“Lakeshore Buildings Renamed.” Rapport 1975.
Melamet-Vetter, Walther. “The Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital, A World of Its Own, Another Coocoo’s Nest, In New Toronto.” Toronto: July 1989.
Peter Barnard Associates, in Association with A.J. Diamond Planners Ltd. Lakeshore Planning Study, Final Report: Future Use Options for the Lakeshore Psychiatric Hospital Property. Prepared for the Ministry of Government Services and the City of Etobicoke. Toronto: Ministry of Government Services, September 1986.
“Public Commissions.” Millie Chen. Retrieved September 3, 2012.
Rogers, E.R. Esq., Inspector of Asylums, Parliament Buildings, Toronto. [Untitled].

Additional information and corrections were provided by Ed Janiszewski.

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