Legislative Buildings

LEGISLATIVE BUILDINGS overlooking VICTORIA Harbour were constructed in stages from 1893 to 1916. They replaced the original colonial buildings, known as the Birdcages, which had housed the BC government since 1859. Designed by Francis RATTENBURY, the buildings utilized many BC materials, including granite from NELSON ISLAND and roofing slate from JERVIS INLET. A 2-m gilded statue ofGeorge VANCOUVER graces the top of the central dome. Critics of the building project complained at its cost; mainlanders suspected it was an excuse to "anchor" the capital on the Island just as Victoria was being eclipsed by Vancouver. The first stage of the project opened on 10 Feb 1898; the Parliamentary Library was added in 1916. The building is outlined at night by 3,300 light bulbs. It went through extensive modernization and restoration in 1974.