220-Ton Nova Scotia Building Moved Using 700 Bars of Soap

A former hotel in Nova Scotia was moved by S. Rushton Construction with help from 700 bars of soap. Halifax’s Elmwood Building, which was built as a home in 1826 and converted into the Elmwood Hotel in 1896, was slated for demolition in 2018, but was saved by a sale to Galaxy Properties. The company announced plans to move the Victorian structure closer to the street and put it on a new foundation so it could connect to a planned apartment building. The traditionally accepted method of moving such massive structures involves the use of rollers. In this case, however, the team adopted a radically different approach, opting for an item commonly found in the bathroom: soap. Ivory was chosen because of its smooth and slippery characteristics. The bars of soap were utilized to facilitate the gliding of the building across the steel frame. The operation was executed flawlessly, with the assistance of two excavators and a tow truck. While the Elmwood building has been successfully moved, the journey is not over. The structure is slated to be moved again in the near future, once its new foundation is completed. The use of the soap bars in this relocation process set a precedent for future such operations, opening up a world of possibilities in the field of heritage conservation.