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Calgary Heritage Initiative forums • View topic - 1st Street SW news

1st Street SW news

Moderator: newsposter

1st Street SW news

Postby newsposter » Wed Jan 03, 2007 9:54 pm

One of the busiest areas in Calgary for development and heritage issues is Victoria Crossing - (re-branded Victoria Park BRZ- the longtime name of the district - at the turn of 2010) in particular First Street SW. Here is some news of the street, north to south.

Latest updates here March 2009 - see the last post.

Drum and Monkey (Aull Block)

Rumour has it that this corner building, and the single storey buildings to the south are for sale. Does anyone know more? The building on the left is the former Night Gallery building - news on that below.

In the 1960s, Joni Mitchell launched her career singing folk songs in a club called "The Depression" at 1207A 1st Street SW. That would be the grey/black building in the photo, more recently home to Euphoria, the Venue and other nightclubs. Currently vacant. There is a 'for lease' sign on the building (April 29 2007).

Application DP2007-4268 at 1207 1 ST SW – The permit is for a change of use to restaurant/retail for Giuseppe Market. (January 2008)[/b] Guiseppi Italian Market (2012)

:!: Information about The Depression at jonimitchell.com. Search for "The Depression".


Photo by http://www.flickr.com/photos/entheos_fog/
Image

Night Gallery / Fraternal Order of Eagles

The old CIBC building on the SE corner of 1st Street and 12th Avenue is the home to Formans Fashion Group. Owner Sadru Peerani has purchased the old Night Gallery building on the west side of the street with plans renovate it for upscale retail on the main floor (recently the unluckily named B&E Grocery) and use the old Night Gallery space upstairs for offices. (info from the Herald's David Parker) The building looks unremarkable now, but it looked quite different when it was built around 1910 as the 'aerie' of the Fraternal Order of Eagles. You can see then and now photos below. In mid-century the upstairs may have been a Penley's dance hall - can anyone confirm that? Back in the 1980s I recall it being the home and semi-public pad of 'Dino' of the Golden Calgarians. If anyone knows anything more, post below or send a note to info@calgaryheritage.org

The 'today' photo of the building as it is now by Entheos Fog http://www.flickr.com/photos/entheos_fog/
Image

The historic photo below is on the Glenbow site, www.glenbow.org. On the left is The 'Night Gallery' building in 1910 - aerie of the Fraternal Order of Eagles. The two-storey building up the street burned and was replaced by the Drum and Monkey building in the 1920s. The Pryce-Jones Department Store (Manhattan Lofts) has not been built yet. That's the Grain Exchange building in the distance.
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Radio Block

Just south of the Night Gallery building is the "Edgar Block", a building that used to be NYLA nightclub. There is presently a "for lease sign" on the building (April 29, 2007). (rumour of a furniture store going in - March 2008) Confirmed: Art gallery going in - July 2008. See the post below: http://www.calgaryheritage.org/CHIForum/vi ... =1346#1346

Next to that is the distinctive Radio Block on the NW corner of 1st Street and 13th Avenue, where there are changes coming...

Image
Radio Block
(1215 - 1 Street SW)

[i]The Radio Block was built in 1922, as a commercial/apartment building adding to the important commercial corridor of First Street SW at the time. CFCN Radio started broadcasting that same year, and while they were never located in the Radio Block, the building was named to celebrate the release of this new broadcasting medium.


In the 1980s it was the home of the notable Tasmanian Ballroom. For the last several years it has housed the Cherry Lounge and the Castle Pub. There are plans to convert most of the building into a Jameison's Irish Pub ( :arrow: March 2008 - this plan was refused by the City due to parking requirements - Cherry Lounge and Castle Pub may remain...), and the rest into offices and retail. The historic flavour is expected to remain intact. :!: New See the post below dated April 29 2007 for more information.

Calgary built very little between the two world wars due to recession and depression, so this is an unusual standout from 1922, with a somewhat more 'modern' look than its predecessors. The history in italics above is from the Victoria Crossing website and December 2006 newsletter. www.vcrossing.com. The photo is by CHI member Entheos Fog http://www.flickr.com/photos/entheos_fog/

Underwood (Mescalero's) Haultain Park

Moving south, The Union Square project on 1st Street SW, which involves the preservation of 'core' of the old Underwood Block / Mescalero's, and the improvement on nearby Haultain Park, had been on hold for a few months but is now moving ahead with construction. 'Phase 1' of the park improvements was completed in November 2006. For more information and a photo of the 'dig', go to this thread: http://www.calgaryheritage.org/CHIForum/vi ... ?p=700#700
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IODE Building

Across the street is a pit where the Colours condo is being developed. When a 1940s building was demolished, it revealed this 'Dunlop Tires' sign painted on the side of the IODE building. Covered up for over 60 years, the sign is well-preserved. (Note: Covered up again by Colours construction by fall 2007)
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Last edited by newsposter on Mon Apr 02, 2012 7:45 pm, edited 13 times in total.
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Postby newsposter » Sat Mar 03, 2007 8:12 pm

New photos and info above - especially check out the Dunlop Tires sign ^^

Also, the 'Western Block' at the corner of 1st Street and 10th Avenue was recently recognized with a plaque presented by the Calgary Heritage Authority. Click here for more on that: http://www.calgaryheritage.org/CHIForum/vi ... ?p=770#770

Below is a photo of the building from the 60s (it appears), from the Alison Jackson photo collection on the Calgary Public Library site. (In the early-mid 70s, this is where I went with my grandpa to buy fishing tackle.)

Image
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Postby newsposter » Sun Apr 29, 2007 10:52 am

News of the Radio Block. See above for more regarding 1st Street SW.

Comrade makes noise in renovated Radio Block

David Parker
Calgary Herald

Friday, April 27, 2007

Last December I was pleased to be able to report on the number of changes taking place along 1st Street S.W. as new developments were changing its identity and some of the less desirable businesses leaving the wide walking boulevard.

O'Connors and Formans fashion stores are high-class retailers, and the Colors by Batistella, Chocolate, Union Square and the proposed retail/office complex around Hotel Arts developments will make the street so much more attractive and busier.

I recently took a tour of the Radio Block, located on the west side of the street to the corner of 13th Avenue, and was delighted to see that it is being transformed into another 1st Street gem.

Cherry's Lounge and Castle Pub on the ground floor is closed and under renovation to convert it into an upscale establishment called Jameson's Pub.

The other entrance on the street will form the reception area for Comrade Agency that has already moved into the whole of the second floor. The space used to be called Tasmanian Ballroom and I understand it was rather dark and sinister. But when the ceiling was stripped away a huge 60 foot-long skylight was uncovered that has helped create what must be a very pleasant place for creative people to spend their working day.

Comrade was founded by Thelton McMillian who moved to Calgary from San Francisco with KPMG Consulting Group. He had previously been vice president and managing director of Organic, running its San Francisco office that boasted accounts like Blockbuster and Starbucks. In Calgary he made the move to Critical Mass and served for a time as president and CEO before striking out on his own.

His Canadian wife Christy is the client partner of Comrade and Ottawa-born Darren Murata also moved up from San Francisco to become the creative partner. It currently has a staff of 13 in Calgary plus one in a Los Angeles satellite office.

International clients already make up a good portion of the firm's workload. Entering the office I was met with a huge, made-in-Calgary model submarine called Silent Hunter IV that was used in a campaign for Ubisoft, a Paris-based video game developer and publisher. Comrade is also working on web design, marketing, public relations, and media training for Simple Floors, a California company that sells hardwood floors direct to customer.

Locally it was responsible for the cheeky campaign for Shift Networks that focused on the frustration of business phone users with their providers. And I saw some of the work underway for Solara, a major resort condo hotel planned for Canmore.

McMillian has a great team of designers on staff but when he made the decision to lease 6,284 square feet in the Radio Block that was in pretty bad shape, he didn't hesitate in getting expert interiors advice in the design of its spaces. The task was handed to Guy and Heide Painchaud of Habitar, a design studio with an office in Bridgeland as well as Los Angeles where the talented couple moved from.

The result is quite amazing. The amount of light from the skylight and windows show off the Herman Miller furniture and partitions, the fireplace lounge, interior brick and original woodwork. The ground floor entrance area is also large enough to accommodate a couple more offices as well as staff showers and bicycle stands.

Comrade will make a fine neighbour to the other new developments that are helping to regenerate one of Calgary's old pedestrian malls.

- - -
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Postby newsposter » Sun Aug 05, 2007 9:35 am

August 5, 2007. Update of progress on Union Square, incorporating the remaining part of the old Underwood Block. Radio Block in background. Thanks to Boris550 at www.skyscraperpage.com, Calgary Construction thread

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:arrow: Update June 29 2008 - credit to livingforthecity in the Calgary Construction Forum at www.skyscraperpage.com

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Last edited by newsposter on Mon Jun 30, 2008 11:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby newsposter » Sun Feb 10, 2008 8:08 pm

Just east of 1st Street SW on 13th Avenue (121 13th Avenue), Somerville Memorials recently moved after 105 years at this location. The small bungalow-style sales building was built in 1967, replacing the an older building. Here is a blurb and photo from the Herald's www.calgaryherald.com/125 series about the demolition of the old building back in 1967. Below is another photo of the Somerville site when the first building was built in 1903...

Compiled by Norma Marr, Calgary Herald
Friday, February 08, 2008

Aug. 3, 1967

Historic building crumbles: Wreckers moved in Monday to demolish the wooden frame sales office of Somerville Monumental Works, which has stood at the corner of 1st Street and 13th Avenue S.W. since 1903. The building, which has served as a stone cutting plant for 40 years, was ripped down to make room for a parking area. Company officials say they investigated the possibility of moving the historic office to Heritage Park, but found it was impossible to move the building.
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In 1903 - glenbow photo of an even older building on the same site
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Postby newsposter » Thu Jul 10, 2008 9:27 am

The former NYLA nightclub site on 1st Street SW is to be home of a new gallery according to Where magazine's July/August issue:

NEW GALLERY
With its original gallery in the Distillery District in Toronto, Thompson Landry Gallery is opening a Calgary location on Aug 14. Specializing in contemporary Quebec art, the gallery’s Calgary home is set inside a 1940s-style building, complete with an incredible winding staircase—a replica of the renowned Maxim’s Restaurant staircase in Paris. “I feel strongly about renovating a historical building,” says Joanne Thompson, a director at the Toronto location. “We did the same thing in Toronto with an 1830s Distillery building. I love to see old buildings have a new life.” Artists featured will include François Carrier, André Monet and Yves St-Laurent. 2nd level, 1213 - 1 St SW.
http://www.thompsonlandry.com/site/aboutus.html
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Postby newsposter » Tue Sep 09, 2008 12:18 pm

thanks to livingforthecity at www.skyscraperpage.com - calgary construction forum for the photos....

It seems the old Night Gallery building will also be home to "Forbidden Clothing" in addition to the aforementioned art gallery (see above post)

Image

Also, looks like a St. James Corner pub will be going into the old Cherry Lounge site in the Radio Block:

Image
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Postby newsposter » Mon Sep 22, 2008 3:48 pm

Update courtesy Sadru Peerani of Forman's Fashion Group (Sept 22 2008)


The former Night Gallery Building at 1209 First Street is now the home of:

- Forbidden Clothing at 100, 1209 First Street.
www.forbiddenfashions.ca is set to open in October 2008, featuring
European Urban Sportswear. The design of the store will feature a medieval theme. Forbidden will bring a sophistication to urbane sportswear with a fresh and inspired approach to contemporary fashion.

- Endeavor Arts at 200, 1209 First Street. www.endeavorarts.com will be a technology based Art Gallery and Event Space. The space has been renovated to restore some of its original splendor as a dance studio. Endeavor's goal will be to bring a youthful approach to art with technology as both a medium and a form of art, combined with the ability for Calgarians to host their own events within a inspirational setting. Endeavor will operate with a dual bottom line, profit and social awareness, and will contribute to Calgary's diversifying tapestry.

1213 First Street to the south (note: old NYLA) is featuring another Art Gallery, Thompson Landry Gallery on its second floor set also to open by October 2008.

1207 First Street to the north (note: old Venum?) is featuring Guiseppe Market, an Italian Eatery and Market, set to open December 2008.

Formans Fashion Group - www.formans.ca
Forbidden Clothing - www.forbiddenfashions.ca
Endeavor Arts - www.endeavorarts.com
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Postby newsposter » Sat Oct 25, 2008 4:09 pm

More news of the revitalization of 1st street and its eclectic mix of old and new buildings. This place will look totally different by the spring!

http://www.canada.com/calgaryherald/new ... bd37ece382

Retail growth driving downtown renewal

David Parker
Calgary Herald


Thursday, October 23, 2008


When Graham O'Connor relocated his fashion stores from 7th Avenue in the downtown core to the former Valentine Volvo site on 1st Street S.W. in 2002, there were many skeptics who thought he'd made a big mistake because of the street's bar scene reputation. He did face some problems at the start, but his investment in a new, standalone retail store has proved a real success, primarily thanks to the renaissance that is continuing along the whole street.

O'Connor has since opened another store, O'Connor's Womens Wear, across the street in Chocolate Condos, but lots more has happened and there are exciting plans that just might turn it into Calgary's answer to Rodeo Drive.

It is a major roadway and one of the city's widest travelling north/south from the CP Rotunda at the underpass down to the magnificent façade of St. Mary's Cathedral.

It forms part of the Victoria Crossing BRZ and executive director David Low is delighted at the new life that is being poured into that area of his jurisdiction. A social and economic anthropologist, he was a logistics and quality control consultant to the oil and gas industry before joining the BRZ two years ago.

He says the whole community has enjoyed tremendous investment from developers and retailers that has resulted in a new face that by build-out of current projects will see an influx of 700-plus new residents within easy walking distance of 1st Street. And office workers in the IBM Campus, Keynote office tower and the addition to Tower Centre plus growth at the nearby Stampede Park will significantly increase pedestrian traffic.

John Torode has shown his belief in the area with a number of projects and his office and retail development under construction at the back of his Hotel Arts will do much to improve the street. The second-floor office space is fully leased and only a couple of small bays are available in the street level retail.

Formans Fashion Group was also a pioneer when it relocated its shop into the former historic CIBC bank building on the corner of 12th Avenue in 2004. At that time it was across from some troublesome establishments but Sadru Peerani felt he could help change things and besides becoming a board member of the BRZ has invested in the other side of the street and next month will open a new retail shop across from Formans called Forbidden Clothing.

It will feature urban European sportswear for the young of mind, including fashions by designers such as Karl Lagerfeld and Jean Paul Gaultier.

Above Peerani, a former 2,400-square-foot dance studio space is being converted into Endeavour Art, a technology-based gallery and rental space for events. Giuseppe's Italian Market will also open in the same block later this year and Thompson Landry Gallery, specializing in works by Quebec-based artists, recently opened.

Low says plans are also in the works for renovations to the Drum & Monkey and an upscale Jameson's Irish Pub. 3,000 square feet more of retail space is available at the base of the new Union Square condo tower that will be ready for occupancy by year-end and plans are for a restaurant to be placed between it and the second tower. Colours by Batistella condos will also welcome residents in December and plans are being drawn up for Atomic Teahouse and a new coffee/take-out food concept by Saint Germain and deVille Luxury Coffee and Pastries to locate in its retail space; helping to make 1st Street a much livelier and nicer place to live and shop.

I just wish they would give the street a more romantic name -- it certainly deserves to be called a boulevard.
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Postby newsposter » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:15 pm

A new tenant for the historic Radio Block (see above). Story from the newsletter of the Victoria Crossing BRZ, www.vcrossing.com

Jamesons Pub Group is proud to
announce the January 2009 opening
of St James Corner Restaurant
and Irish Pub
on the corner of 13
Avenue and 1 St SW.

St James Corner will offer all the
comforts of a traditional Irish Pub
infused with the vibrant energy of
a downtown restaurant. This newly
renovated split-level room is the
ideal place to grab a quick weekday
lunch, meet friends for a drink, or
kick back and watch the game.

Pull up a stool at the impressive
custom-carved bar which showcases
some of the finest draught and
spirits this side of the Atlantic, and
explore the superb menu that covers
everything from healthy salads
to pub fare and hearty meals.
At St James Corner, you can always
count on a perfectly poured
pint, served with a smile, and some
great food.

St James Corner Restaurant and
Irish Pub is located at 1219 - 1 Street
SW. Phone: (403) 262-1157.
Sign up for a Grand Opening
invitation, by visiting
www.stjamescorner.ca

St James Corner Restaurant &
Irish Pub opening January 2009
Business of the month:
Hours of operation:
Mon - Fri: 11 am to 2 am
Sat - Sun: 10 am to 2 am
Weekend breakfast 10 am to 2 pm
Wheelchair accessible
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Postby newsposter » Tue Feb 03, 2009 5:01 pm

Very unfortunate fire at the Thompson Landry Gallery, opened just a few months ago in a 1900 building on 1st Street - known to some as the former NYLA night club (and Bourbon Street, Bermuda Triangle, etc.)

Two press releases:


Date: Tue Feb 3 08:00:31 2009
Subject: Building Fire
From: Fire PIO

CITYBEAT - CITY OF CALGARY PRESS RELEASE
-----------------------------------------------------------------

Fire crews were called to 1213 - 1 Street SW On Tuesday
February 3 at 0640 hrs for a building fire.

On arrival they quickly confirmed the building was unoccupied
and extinguished the fire. The fire started in a shed located
in the alley and spread to the building.

During the fire attack two Firefighters fell through a floor.
One was treated on scene and released by Calgary EMS. The
second Firefighter was not hurt.

10 pieces of fire apparatus responded....


Date: Tue Feb 3 12:04:27 2009
Subject: Update to building fire
From: Fire PIO
CITYBEAT - CITY OF CALGARY PRESS RELEASE
-----------------------------------------------------------------

The cause of the fire this morning, February 3, has been
determined as electrical in nature. A light on the rear
exterior of the building had been tampered with. The total
damage has been estimated at $100,000.00

-30-
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Postby newsposter » Wed Mar 04, 2009 12:25 pm

Great cover story in the February - March edition of Home to Home about the revival of 1st Street SW with historic reuse and modern new buildings. Includes comments from CHI's development watch director Chris Edwards:

http://www.hometohomecalgary.com/editorial/?id=413
ImageImage
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