Standard Bank Chambers Marshalls Town

Intimately associated with an institution that financed the industry that shaped the development of South Africa, Standard Bank Chambers is one of Johannesburg's most significant historical buildings. It is located at the heart of the old financial district near other iconic buildings such as Victory House, the Rand Club and the Third Corner House. Its association with a pioneer architectural firm adds to its significance.

"This bank building, which was nominated as one of Johannesburg’s top 100 heritage places in 1986 and previously recommended for national monument status, was completed in 1907, two years after the plans for the building were approved. It is one of Johannesburg’s oldest remaining steel framed buildings and is an excellent example of late Victorian architecture in the City." "The third Standard Bank Chambers* forms an integral part of a collection of valuable buildings, to be found nowhere else in the City. Opposite the building in Harrison Street is the Victorian finance building Victory House, and east of the latter on the corner of Commissioner and Loveday Streets, the Edwardian landmark building, the third Rand Club Building. West of the third Standard Bank Chambers on the northeast corner of Commissioner and Simmonds Streets, is the third Corner House, from the same period as the former. These buildings have remained relatively unaltered and collectively, reinforces the landmark qualities of the area in which they are situated." "The Standard Bank was started by a Scot, viz. John Paterson in 1862. It is not only one of the oldest banking institutions in South Africa, but the oldest in Johannesburg. The Johannesburg Branch of Standard Bank therefore has an exceptional historic association with the City — being as old as Johannesburg itself." "As the Second Anglo-Boer War was dragging to a close, it had already become apparent that the Bank would require more substantial premises...the search for new premises in the City was finally concluded in April 1902 when the Bank purchased the Barnato Buildings from the Johannesburg Consolidated Investment Company for £145 OOO. Thus began the first chapter of the history of the third Standard Bank Chambers. As preparations were made for the demolition of the Barnato Building, leading architects were invited to submit designs for a proposed new five-storey bank building. The award for design was made to the architectural firm of Stucke & Bannister." Bruwer Survey 2002 - Courtesy the City of Johannesburg * "I see that this information was taken from the Bruwer Survey which relied heavily on Gerhard-Mark van der Waal’s From Mining Camp to Metropolis. Van der Waal referred to this building as “The third Standard Bank Building” (p 128). I am not entirely sure why he regarded this building as the third one because the Stucke and Bannister building in question is actually the fifth premises (not counting the tent in which we opened) occupied by the branch." (Letitia T Myburgh Standard Bank Heritage Centre | Head: Heritage Centre - July 2015]
Original Owner: 
Standard Bank
Architectural Firm: 
Declaration Status: 
Not Declared
Blue Plaque: 
Construction Date - Start: 
Construction Date - Completion: