I suspect I still have a touch of the fever here in the swamp today at The Hollow, so I apologize in advance if I seem a little loopy.  Well, at least more loopy than usual.  Today’s post focuses on a wonderful old heritage building located in Esquimalt, BC on Vancouver Island in Canada.  This little district is situated just outside the greater Victoria area and is full of local families and hard-working folks who are enjoying the surroundings of the island and all it has to offer.

So, when I heard the municipal hall was about to be torn down, I grabbed my trusty camera and hopped right to it.  Nothing bugs me more than missing a chance to document one of these old heritage buildings before it disappears…  Lord knows I’ve encountered this problem more than once before.  “Hey, wasn’t there a cool old building here just yesterday?”  Not this time; not with the Esquimalt Municipal Hall.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Rezoning Application is really code for “about to be destroyed” in these parts.  This shot says it all, really…  a close look at the wall there reveals a board that once had the label “Esquimalt Municipal Hall” affixed to it, now just a shadow and a ghost of this sign.  The wall itself really shows a weathered facade due to years of island living.  It ain’t easy being a building here in the rain forest, that’s for sure.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

This is definitely my favorite image from this series.  Here we get a pretty clear look at the building itself, and the classical and typical architectural styling for Vancouver Island historically.  The Totem Pole graces the front lawn, adding a huge element of interest and the bright green bushes peppered with red from the flowers there is a last-minute, bittersweet look at this old historic site.

All of this will be just a pile of dirt in a few short weeks.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

As we work our way around back of the building, we see a stark presence in a little alley-way.  Here we can see a lot of wear and decay from years of hard weather.  I am sure these are all just a few outwardly clues to the true condition of the building which I have heard is full of mold and in very poor shape; currently it is not suitable for use.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Just behind the image shown above is this storage facility.  The murals of the Killer Whales are really well done and it’s a bit of a shame to think they will soon be gone forever.  This storage facility is not in the best shape, but is full of interesting artifacts and elements to take in.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

In this picture, we can take a closer look at the mural.  Sure, the building may not be new by any stretch of the imagination, but it doesn’t really appear to be falling down or anything remotely close to that.  I had heard there was a house here that the city had bought years ago, and the house was slated for demolition as well.  I couldn’t find this house for certain, but believe this maybe a part of it…  I could totally be wrong here, but the site is not that large…  you’d think it would be pretty hard to hide a whole house here.

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

I wasn’t going to originally post this image due to the sun spot there, but the painted mural was such an interesting piece I decided to include this in our series today, for the sake of completeness of documenting the facility before its final curtain call…

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

Esquimalt Municipal Hall - Victoria BC Canada

This is the other side of the above storage facility.  I just love those old-fashioned garage doors and all the wear and weathering you see on them.  To me it looks like this building was added onto numerous times during its lifespan, and each piece didn’t necessarily adhere to the previous bits architectural styling or features.

I totally understand why this facility needs to be brought down and rebuilt.  It’s just the documentation of these old structures is very compelling to us here at The Hollow and we love to grab images of things before they disappear forever.  This leads me to a melancholy state at times, as I just love the look and feel of history.  It’s bigger than me, I feel absolutely compelled to photograph these buildings.

Thanks so much for taking the time to visit us today, we sure do appreciate it.  If you have time, please feel free to leave us some comments as we always love to hear from all our visitors!!




  1. avatar Chris Nitz says:

    Wonderful series of photos Toad! I hope you two get better soon 🙂

  2. avatar Jason Hines says:

    It’s so sad to lose history like that. I love the photo of the mural and the sign that reads “Peace on Ear” :). Feel better man!

    • I guess the end-times hit as the person was making out the sign and only could get a partial note across to the remaining people? LOL Priceless. Thanks SO much for your kind visit & comments today, Jason, we sure do appreciate that!

  3. avatar Tobias Mann says:

    Great street shots. What are you shooting with?

    • Hey, Tobias, thanks SO much for your visit! What an honor! Well, currently we use my Dad’s SONY A200 camera that I got when he passed away awhile ago. Looking to step up in the future, but for now we love this camera and it seems to be doing the trick. Many thanks for your kind visit & comment today good sir!

  4. One of the side effects of the medication you’re taking must be a tendency to recite nursery rhymes! Seriously Toad, this is a thoughtfully documented series. Very difficult to keep up and track progress. I love the murals of the killer whales.

    • I did, like, really? Where? OH, THERE!! LOL Toads and NyQuil are a rough mix, aren’t they? 🙂 Thank you so very much for your ongoing friendship & support Barbara. We talk about you every day at The Hollow here, so much so we’re rather convinced you are a dear part of our family. C’mon up for a visit sometime! 🙂

  5. avatar A.Barlow says:

    Nice set man. I wonder if they’re going to move the totem pole to a new location.

    • Hey, that’s a GREAT question Aaron! I hope they show it at the new facility, somewhere. It’s really rather beautiful, isn’t it. Thanks so much my good friend, we really do appreciate your visit & comments here today!

  6. avatar Heather says:

    Wow such pretty buildings. It’s sad really 🙁 awesome photos and post! Hang in there Toads, you will feel better soon!

  7. avatar andy gimino says:

    Great post toad…i love how you go into great detail in your posts!

  8. avatar Jim Denham says:

    Toads, my boy would go nuts for the killer whale mural! They call this sort of thing progress, but it is hard to imagine that things are really progressing – only changing. Eddie Izzard said it right when he claimed, “You tear your history down, man!” He is right! Great post!

    • What a great great comment today, Jim, thanks SO much for all your kindness! There’s no way I could really agree more, personally. I totally understand why these things happen, but at the same time I find it hard to come to terms with sometimes. I love these old buildings and architecture so very much, and they are part of the world I come from…. thanks so much my friend, you totally rock!

  9. avatar chrisdmrf says:

    Another great post toad. Love the buildings in you area

  10. avatar Tom Barnett says:

    Timing is everything, is it not? Good job here. Love the front with the totem pole, very cool.

    • No kidding, my friend, especially for me… remember that building I had planned on shooting for a few weeks and when I got done there… it was gone? I still have nightmares about that. LOL Thanks so much for your friendship here at The Hollow Tom, you rock!

  11. avatar Cathy Ross says:

    So glad you captured these beautiful images Toad before this wonderful building gets torn down! Hope you feel better soon!

    • Thank you so much Cathy, that’s very kind of you! I believe we are slowly coming out of this flu here, starting to feel more like a Toad and less like a pile of old, used tires. Really appreciate your visit & kind comments today, my friend!

  12. avatar Jim Nix says:

    lovely photos as usual my friend!