Recently I decided to research the history of my building on Gladstone Avenue. The shape of the building always puzzled me and the City Archives finally solved the mystery.
Couvrette Studio was built in 1910 as a Livery (horse and carriage depot)by one of Ottawa`s top hotels, The Alexandria on Bank Street, founded by entrepreneur Thomas Babin. By 1923 it became Horner Motor Sales, the first automobile showroom in the city. In the mid thirties it was the home of Progressive Printers and was heavily reinforced to hold huge presses on the second floor. The building is so solid that it easily withstood a car crashing in the front window last year.
Kinda reminds me of my company, which has withstood three recessions so far and counting. Yes, we started in 1977…making us one of the longest standing studios in the city.
Dollco took over the printing business and 430 Gladstone became one of Ottawa`s original hi tech companies in the mid sixties.I purchased the building in the mid 1990’s and after extensive renos…voila, Couvrette Studio.
When I started my business there were 15 studios owned by photographers in the downtown core, bounded by Bronson, the Ottawa River, the Queensway and the Rideau River. How times change…now its just us……STABLE .you betcha! (its a joke,…livery (stable) oh well.
It sure would be nice to have some shots of horses and Model T`s in front of our building…maybe a project for the 100th anniversary next year!