Commonly referred to as “Toronto’s Flatiron,” the Gooderham Building is situated just east of the city’s financial district, wedged between Wellington and Front Street. One of Toronto’s best known (and often-Instagrammed) buildings, the Gooderham Building, an example of Romanesque Revival and French Gothic architecture, has remained an iconic Toronto site since construction finished in 1892. Culture Trip takes a look at the building’s past, its namesake, and ten photographs that reflect unique perspectives of the Gooderham throughout history.
In this photo, C1888, Torontonians (and their horses) gather around the Coffin Block Building, which sat on the same site before construction began on the Gooderham in 1891.
Pictured here shortly after its construction, the building was initially the headquarters of the Gooderham Family’s company, Gooderham and Worts. Known for its successful distillery, founded in 1837, the company also dabbled in interests ranging from the Toronto Railway to woolen mills to banking.
The evening light illuminates the building’s curves; designed by architect David Roberts Jr, construction on the Gooderham Building was completed in 1892.
The building’s triangular shape results from the merging of Wellington and Front Streets. While Wellington Street follows the Town of York grid, Front Street’s diagonal line is attributed to the 19th-century waterfront.
This 1898 photographs highlights the copper clad roof, with its steep pitches.
And, because it’s Canada: in all its winter glory…
Dubbed Toronto’s ‘Flatiron,’ The Gooderham Building joins similarly designed landmarks, including New York’s Flatiron.
The Gooderham Building and Toronto’s night lights.
The mural on the back of the Gooderham uses a trompe l’oeil effect, creating the illusion that the painting’s edges are ‘fluttering’ away. The Flatiron Mural, created by Canadian artist Derek Besant in 1980, is a picture of the Perkins Building, across the street.
The Gooderham Building was declared a historic site in 1975 and has since undergone restoration to ensure its preservation.