Sunday, June 5, 2011

City Hall and Environs, Waterbury, Connecicut

The Waterbury Municipal Center Complex, also known as the Cass Gilbert National Register District, is a group of five buildings, including City Hall, on Field and Grand streets in Waterbury, Connecticut, United States. They are large stone and brick structures, all designed by Cass Gilbert in the Georgian Revival and Second Renaissance Revival architectural styles, built during the 1910s.

The complex was financed by the Chase family, owners of the Chase Brass Company, one of Waterbury's major industries at the time. In the wake of a 1902 fire that had destroyed a portion of downtown, the Chases and other local businessmen saw an opportunity for urban renewal. Cass Gilbert won the competition to design a new complex a few blocks from the old city hall building (since demolished) on West Main Street. Unusual for the time, the complex would house not just the mayor and city council but the public safety functions of city government such the police and fire departments, courts and jails. In keeping with the contemporary City Beuatiful movement, the complex included other large-scaled buildings in its "court of honor", such as Chase's headquarters, a building named Lincoln House for the city's charitable organizations and a dispensary.

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