Reading Kitchener

There are numerous written works about Kitchener providing descriptions and images that help in visualizing Kitchener's cityscape of the past, and in understanding its current dynamics.  Below is a growing bibliography of readings relevant to interpreting Kitchener's downtown.  

Among these, the essential readings would include English & McLaughlin (1983), and Mannell (1996).  

English, John and Kenneth McLaughlin (1983) Kitchener:  an Illustrated History.  Wilfrid Laurier University Press:  Waterloo.

Kitchener Chamber of Commerce (1986)  Builders and Boosters:  Kitchener Chamber of Commerce 100th Anniversary 1886-1986.

MacLean, Melissa & Keith Wilson (2001).  In Our Midst:  Stories from the Waterloo County Jail.  Lamplighter Books:  Cambridge, Ontario. 

Mannell, Steven (1996)  Images of Progress 1946-1996:  Modern Architecture in Waterloo Region.  The Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Kitchener, Ontario.


"If the individual distinctiveness of the towns impresses the visitor first, a deeper acquaintance unmasks the common elements.  There remains something very Ontario about Ontario towns, most obviously a plainness in the building that ranges from elegant to dour.  The prevailing Scottish ethos, which distrusted display and prized straightforwardness, was influential here; so was the settlers' poverty and the dearth of easily workable stone. .... Ontario towns in the main were the creation of builders, not architects" (xv)

Ashenburg, Katherine (1996)  Going to Town:  Architectural Walking Tours in Southern Ontario.  Macfarlane Walter & Ross:  Toronto.