Macdonald Block (1863)

1205-1213 Wharf st.

Architect: John Wright?
Renovation: Bawlf & Cooper Associates, 1979

Framing the northwest edge of Bastion Square, the building was built by Captain James Murray Reid and was subsequently owned by his son-in-law W.J. Macdonald, twice mayor of Victoria, provincial MLA, and pioneer British Columbia senator. The arched, second-storey windows and restrained ornaments, still discernible under the modern stucco, are hallmarks of the Italianate style introduced by architect John Wright. Street-level commercial spaces were occupied by smithies, dry-goods merchants, and wheelrights when this was the original commercial core of this growing colonial city.