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Title: Small Arms Inspection Building, Lakeview
Identifier: G423
Date of Original Photo: 1980
Date Built: ca 1940
Image Type: Slide
Subject: Historic buildings - Ontario - Lakeview (Mississauga)
Location: 1352 Lakeshore Road East

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Description: 1352 Lakeshore Road East. Conc 3 SDS, pt. Lots 4 & 5. The Small Arms Limited Building at 1352 Lakeshore Road East was once part of a large Second World War government firearms manufacture. The complex included a 212,000 square foot plant and the 81,000 square foot rifle inspection centre, which also housed offices. The government erected these buildings, commencing August 1940, on military training grounds, in use since the First World War. The facility was complete by January 1941 and in operation by June, manufacturing submachine guns, rifles, sniper rifles, pistols and machine guns, totalling almost $44 million in value. Women from all over Canada flocked to Lakeview to work at the facility. At the manufacture's peak, 65% of the workforce was female. A women's dormitory and many prefabricated homes were built north of Lakeshore Road East to accommodate the employees. Though wartime production ceased in 1945, the plant continued to operate until 1974, supplying military arms and other machinery. As a Crown Corporation, Small Arms Limited was prohibited from soliciting business and the company declined. The government gradually demolished all of the structures save for the inspection centre, known as "Building Number 12," and the water tower, which was added to the heritage inventory in 1999. Small Arms Limited reinvigorated the Lakeview economy, which had been hard hit by the Depression. Moreover, because additional infrastructure was required to accommodate the needs of the employees and their families, the company had a significant effect on the community. Ontario Power Generation and the Cadet Organization Police School have used the building since 1975. This photograph was taken in 1980. Designated under the terms of the Ontario Heritage Act. Description updated January 2019.
Agency: Mississauga Library System