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Allandale Station Lands

Nestled on the south-eastern edge of Barrie overlooking Kempenfelt Bay, the Allandale Train Station was the hub of activity in the early 1900’s for the Grand Trunk Railway. The station was designated under the Federal Heritage Railway Stations Act, which is administered by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.

Progress Updates

Posted May 11, 2022

With the relatively nice weather early this year, the city’s archaeology consultant has resumed their Archaeology Investigation at the Allandale Historic Train Station.​

Posted March 2,​ 2022

Preparations for the 2022 archaeology season is underway and will resume on site once weather and ground conditions permit. 

A significant amount of work has taken place during the 2021 field season which has seen excavation of the foundation of a previous railway building. The stage 4 work of the archaeology study has been underway since 2019 and has seen the excavation and screening of approximately 2,769 cubic metres of soil. The work is being done in partnership with the Huron-Wendat Nation and the Williams Treaty First Nation communities. The study includes both the archaeological assessment and burial site investigation.

As the work continues in 2022, the City will continue its work with the Huron-Wendat Nation and the Williams Treaty First Nation communities and the team of Archeologists at AECOM to thoroughly investigate the long-standing historical significance of the Allandale Train Station site.​

Posted June 11, 2021

The stage 4 archaeology investigation at the Historic Allandale Train Station will continue Monday, June 14. This phase of the study is expected to go until November 2021. ​

Posted August 21, 2020

The City of Barrie, together with the Huron-Wendat Nation and the Williams Treaty First Nation communities, is making further progress on the archaeological study of the historic Allandale Station lands. As the Stage 4 archaeology study continues, the City and partners are beginning further assessment and burial site investigation.

Work has recently begun to start mechanical trenching and screening of soil from the trenches located in the north and northwest of the station buildings. This will help identify the limits of any human remains in the area. The Huron-Wendat Nation are supportive of this strategy and consistent with prior phases of the work, have assigned a monitor to assist with the fieldwork. The Williams Treaty First Nation have been advised of this work as well.

Mechanical trenching means that heavy equipment will be used, but all soil will still be screened for any artifacts or remains. This work will take approximately four weeks. As always, First Nations partners are given the opportunity to monitor the activity at the site and provide guidance.

Posted January 15, 2020

The Stage 4 archaeology study on the historic Allandale Station lands continues throughout 2020.

Posted October 10, 2018

To date, approximately 15 weeks of the planned 24 week Stage 4 archaeology study on the historic Allandale Station lands has been completed. Based on the work completed to date, it is anticipated that the study may take longer than initially planned and work may extend into the Spring of 2019 as a portion of the site still needs to be investigated.

Posted June 29, 2018

The Stage 4 archaeology study began on June 11 and is following the work plan reviewed by the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport (MTCS). Representatives from the various First Nations Communities represented by the Willliams Treaty and the Huron Wendat Nation are on-site assisting with the study which, to date, has benefited from favourable weather conditions. Although subject to change based on study findings, the work is currently anticipated to take until late Fall, 2018.

The MTCS has completed their review of the Stage 2 /3 report, accepted its content and entered it into the Ontario Public Register of Archaeological Reports.

Posted June 1, 2018

The City of Barrie in partnership with the various Williams Treaty First Nation communities and the Huron-Wendat Nation, will begin a Stage 4 archaeology study on the historic Allandale Station lands the week of June 4. The Stage 4 field work is estimated to take 24 weeks to complete.

The Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport has completed their review of the Stage 4 work plan allowing the field work to commence. The stage 4 work plan was approved in advance of final approval of the stage 2/3 report which is currently under final review by the Ministry.

A representative from the various First Nation communities represented by the Williams Treaty and Huron-Wendat Nation will be on site to monitor the site excavation, participate in any decision making as the excavations proceed and ensure that the site is culturally respected. An independent consultant will conduct a peer review of the archeology results and findings.

Posted March 9, 2018

A Stage 4 archaeology study is planned to start this spring, as soon as the ground thaws and we receive Ministry approval. The City is working with the Williams Treaties First Nations and the Huron-Wendat First Nation.

Once the Stage 4 begins, it is estimated to take 15 weeks to complete the field work. The Stage 1 has been accepted by the Ministry and Stage 2/3 is in the process of being reviewed by the Ministry.

Posted August 18, 2017

The City of Barrie continues to follow the archaeological processes, applicable legislation and any direction provided by the Province of Ontario to ensure protection of the archaeological potential of the site.  The City remains committed to engaging with the appropriate First Nations parties throughout this process.

In late 2016, an RFP was issued by the City of Barrie to retain an independent archaeologist to conduct a new study, separate from any previous study on this site. This RFP was issued in collaboration with the Huron-Wendat and Williams Treaty First Nations.

In January 2017, the City awarded the contract to AECOM to complete a full archaeology assessment of the Allandale Train Station site, including stage 1, 2 and 3 studies. Pending results of the studies, a stage 4 assessment will be conducted.

The stage 1 assessment has been received by the City in draft form and is under review. The stage 2 assessment started in the beginning of May. This stage includes hand digging 275 test pits on the site. Through this stage, the archaeologist identified focus areas to continue into the stage 3 assessment.  The stage 3 assessment has been completed and the City is awaiting the report.

A representative from both Huron-Wendat and Williams Treaty First Nations were invited to monitor each stage of the site excavation.  In addition, the City of Barrie retained Dr. Gary Warrick as an independent consultant to conduct a peer review of the archeology results and findings.

The City of Barrie has followed all standards and guidelines on archaeology investigations and consulted the Registrar of Cemeteries, Ontario Heritage Trust and the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism.

No work will happen on the site until all archaeology work is complete. If anything of historical significance is found, the City will consult with all applicable First Nations to determine an appropriate path forward.

AECOM Archaeological Investigation

AECOMs archaeological involvement at the Allandale Station site began in 2016 as a continuation of the previous archaeological work conducted by AMICK Consultants Ltd in 2011 and 2012 and to satisfy the requirements of the burial site Investigation Order (R.S.O 2002, c. 33, s.96) issued by the Registrar of Cemeteries for the Province of Ontario, Michael D’Mello (now the Registrar of Burials - Nancy Watkins).  During AECOMs Stage 2/3 investigation in July 2017, additional human remains were recovered and reported to the Registrar of Burials as part of the open Investigation Order on file with the Registrar of Burials (Ministry of Government and Consumer Services).  In order to complete the burial site investigation and satisfy the requirements of the Funeral, Burials and Cremation Services Act, further archaeological work must be conducted in order to identify and remove all interred individuals and to determine the extent, nature, and origin of the burial site, and the population affiliation of the individuals recovered from the site. Once this work is completed and is found to satisfy O. Reg. 30/11, s. 174, Division C, it is expected that the Registrar of Burials will issue a site Declaration, a Site Disposition Agreement will be negotiated, and the burial site Investigation Order can be closed.


Nestled on the south-eastern edge of the City of Barrie overlooking Kempenfelt Bay, the Allandale Train Station was the hub of activity in the early 1900’s for the Grand Trunk Railway (GTR).  The station buildings consisted of a passenger depot and restaurant as well as a two storey office building.  Three years after the bankruptcy of the GTR in 1919, the Allandale Train Station came under the jurisdiction of the Canadian National Railway (CNR).  Following years of declining passenger and freight traffic, Allandale was downgraded from a divisional point to a station in 1959.  Due to the diminishing rail service, the passenger depot and restaurant were closed during the 1980’s.  VIA Rail and GO Transit last used the office building as a passenger waiting room and for ticket sales briefly in the early 1990’s. 


The Allandale Train Station was designated under the Federal Heritage Railway Stations Act, which is administered by the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada.  Restoration of the Allandale Train Station is under the guidance of the Ontario Heritage Trust.  The heritage value of the Allandale Train Station resides in its picturesque massing, the composition of its elevations, its residential scale, Italianate Villa detailing and its visual as well as symbolic identity with the community.  The characteristic picturesque elements of the turn-of-the-century railway stations include the wide overhanging eaves, covered outdoor waiting areas, dominating rooflines and a non-frontal asymmetrical composition.  The massing of this mid-size station consists of three functionally separate elements; the office building, restaurant building and passenger depot; and the overall composition of a residential scale.  Visual unity of the parts is achieved by the strong horizontal lines created by the dominant rooflines, the brick plinth, repetitive columns, horizontal windows and transom bars and the narrow horizontal wood siding and wood details such as the stringcourse.  The Ontario Heritage Trust recommended that the target date of restoration be 1904 – 1905 for the passenger depot and the restaurant building; and 1895 for the office building.

Scope of work completed

Base Building Restoration (Phases 1 and 2A)
Phase 1 and 2A provided the necessary scope and resources to save the buildings to ensure that present and future members of the public can enjoy these buildings for generations to come. The buildings were deteriorating as major problems continued to worsen including roof, structural and wooden heritage features, etc. Further delaying the work would have escalated restoration costs and some heritage features would have been permanently lost. Phases 1 and 2A are described in detail below.

Phase 1

Phase 1 is complete and included minor maintenance works and the completion of the Detail Design which specifically included:

i. Completion of minor works in preparation of the major tender;
ii. Repair of major leak in roof;
iii. Removal of asbestos;
iv. Removal of fire damage in the wood attic using specialized Dry Ice techniques;
v. Clean-up of site;
vi. Salvage historical elements;
vii. Inventory of historical elements;
viii. Investigations into the original materials and finishes (e.g. paints, stains, etc.);
ix. Improvements to security and safety of the site;
x. Investigation of building structural rehabilitation requirements;
xi. Investigation of foundation reinforcing measures;
xii. Investigation of measures to permanently address building settlement areas;
xiii. Preparation of energy/water reduction reports (LEED assessment);
xiv. Issuance of Contractor Pre-qualification Documents; and
xv. Preparation of tender documents and Architectural/Engineering drawings.

Phase 2A

Phase 2A is the Base Building Restoration and complete. This ensured the long term preservation of the Allandale Train Station which included:

i. Reinforcement of foundations;
ii. Reinforcement of structural walls;
iii. Replacement of roof shingles;
iv. Reinforcement of attic support for ventilation units;
v. Replication of the tower on the southerly building;
vi. Restoration of exterior walls;
vii. Restoration of the two breezeways;
viii. Restoration of ceilings;
ix. Partial restoration of the interior walls to include insulation and vapour barrier;
x. Repair/replacement of sub-floors as needed;
xi. Reinstallation of salvaged historical elements, including replicas where necessary;
xii. Upgrades to meet the latest Building Code;
xiii. Upgrades to meet the Accessibility For Ontarians with Disabilities Act;
xiv. Partial Installation of base Mechanical and Electrical systems, including access; and
xv. Installation of main site services including Natural Gas, Hydro, Telephone, Cable, etc.

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