Royal Victoria College - the Later Years, and Strathcona Music Building
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Royal Victoria College (1960) -- McGill Archives

In 1964, the twelve-storey tower of the Muriel V. Roscoe Wing was opened on the east side of University Street and is, to date, the last extension made to the Royal Victoria College. Durnford, Bolton, Chadwick, and Ellwood was the company entrusted with the construction of this steel-framed high-rise. The exterior of the building features precast concrete alternating with yellow brick facing, the whole interrupted regularly by plentiful windows which give a far-reaching view of the city and provide light to each room. The structure is set back from the street by a two-storey entrance hall and large lounge. It is quite efficient in its use of space, yet provides modern conveniences. The central core contains four elevators for ease of transport and flow of traffic. On each floor, fourteen rooms are located around the core, adjacent to the perimeter of the building, giving them a maximum of light. On every other floor, a warden uses two rooms, bringing the total occupancy to 156 students. There is a kitchenette and a laundry room on every second floor, reducing the use of the elevators somewhat, and a large cafeteria in the basement. Although the rooms are considerably smaller than those of Strathcona's original Hurlbatt Wing, they each have a large window, complete with tailored curtains, and all the furniture a student could need.

In 1971, the Royal Victoria College, now used only as a residence, was limited to the new Roscoe Wing and Nobbs' Vaughan Wing of 1931. The older Hurlbatt Wing and the Reynolds Wing of 1948 were given to the Faculty of Music in 1971 and are its permanent home today after much recent moving. From 1904 to 1964, musical instruction had existed in the Workman Mansion, a large, nineteeth-century style abode on the northwest corner of Sherbrooke and University, purchased for this purpose by Lord Strathcona. The Music Faculty was officially recognized and named in 1920. The Workman edifice was torn down in the 1940s due to an unstable wall; the Otto Maass Chemistry Building stands on this site today. At this point the Faculty of Music temporarily moved to the Shaughnessy house on Drummond Street until a more suitable location could be found. In 1971, the two easternmost wings of RVC were given to the uprooted faculty. In 1973, the firm Bland, Lemoyne, and Shine were commissioned to give the Faculty of Music a new concert hall, named Pollack Hall after Maurice Pollack, owner of a retail store company and donor of this auditorium, capable of seating 600. This "Welcome Home" present was very much appreciated by the Faculty which had been using Redpath Hall as its auditorium since the 1950s. The Marvin Duchow Music Library, named for its organizer and first librarian, was also established in space rented from an office building at 550 Sherbrooke. Today, the Hurlbatt and Reynolds Wings of the old RVC have been renamed the Strathcona Music Building, and Queen Victoria still reigns over the steps.

Additional Pictures of Royal Victoria College - the Later Years and the Music Faculty
Roscoe Wing from rear (1965) -- McGill Archives
Roscoe Wing lounge (1965) -- McGill Archives
Cafeteria (1975) -- McGill Archives
Dining hall (May 1973) -- McGill Archives
Entrance to Roscoe Wing -- McGill Archives
Workman House "Parkside" (1878) -- Notman Archive (McCord Museum)
Pollack Hall construction -- McGill Archives
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Go to "Royal Victoria College - the Early Years"
Built 1899, still standing
Architect - Bruce Price
Donor - Lord Strathcona
Current use - Women's Residence and Faculty of Music

Site of Roscoe Wing (1950)
-- McGill Archives

Roscoe construction (November 1963)
-- McGill Archives

RVC tower from University (1965)
-- McGill Archives

Roscoe Wing bedroom (1965)
-- McGill Archives

Workman House as McGill Music (1912)
-- Notman Archive (McCord Museum)

Workman House as Music
-- McGill Archives

Strathcona Music
-- McGill Archives

Music class
-- McGill Archives