930 Somerset Street West
Written by Bytown Museum
Like the Champagne Bath on King Edward Avenue, the Plant Bath (named for Ottawa Mayor Frank Plant) was opened in 1924 as part of a growing public health movement.
Always one to enjoy a good time, Mayor Plant also sought to inject some fun into Ottawa winters. In 1922, he officially opened a toboggan slide that ran alongside the Ottawa Locks and shot tobogganers out onto the frozen Ottawa River.
Structural problems eventually forced the closure of the Plant Bath in the 1990s. In 1996, City Council approved extensive renovations to the bath, which reopened as the Plant Bath Recreation Centre in 2004.
The success of the new recreation centre is a community effort. The beautiful gardens that surround the facility were planted by the Ottawa Horticultural Society. Each year, the organization selects a public site to beautify with their gardening skills.
Did you know that in 1924, when the Plant Bath opened, prohibition was in effect in Ottawa? Luckily it wasn't in Hull (Gatineau), and people simply crossed the river to buy a drink!