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Consolidated Building
Johannesburg, Gauteng

TH SMITH: Architect
ABURROW and TREEBY: Project Architect

Street:84-6 Fox St


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26°12'23.14" S 28°02'25.55" E Alt: 1775m

Fox/Harrison/Marshall Streets

Small arches extending over the height of several storeys were used in the first group of buildings in which frame construction was a determinant in the facade design. The best example of this was the Consolidated Building which at the same time represented the closest approach to the Chicago style of America. This 'modern' design was the work of the London architect T H SMITH, while ABURROW & TREEBY of Johannesburg acted as supervising architects.

The Consolidated Building's facade articulation was distinctly similar to that of Adler & Sullivan's Auditorium Building (1887-9) in Chicago. It also showed similarities with the horizontally directed treatment of windows and rounded corners with narrow windows used by Sullivan in his Carson, Pirie & Scott Building (1899-1904) in Chicago. The narrow bands of rusticated wall planes of the Consolidated Building were a powerful expression of the frame construction. Ornamentation was limited to a minimum, but the classicist origins of this ornamentation vaguely identified the structure with the Beaux Arts. An interesting feature of the building was the stepped upper storeys which foreshadowed the building regulations of the 1930s which made this style a distinctive feature of the cityscape.

(van der Waal, 1987:133-4)

(Afr Archt Sep 1912:48)

All truncated references not fully cited below are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

Books that reference Consolidated Building

Gaylard, Shaun & McDougall, Brett . 2022. RSA 365 : 365 Drawings of South African Architecture. Johannesburg: Blank Ink Design. pg 108, 108 ill
van der Waal, Gerhard-Mark. 1987. From Mining Camp to Metropolis - The buildings of Johannesburg 1886-1940. Pretoria: Human Sciences Research Council. pg 133-134