Seventh Avenue
115 – 129  7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta

An artist's rendering of the completed restoration.
An artist's vision of the 100 block of 7th Avenue SW after the completion of an intensive rehabilitation. 


With the purchase of six historic properties in the 100 block of 7th Avenue SW, Heritage Property Corporation is one step closer to giving the derelict block a much needed makeover. Planning is underway for an extensive rehabilitation and development project that would unite the block’s rich history with the some of the present day’s most cutting-edge technology. 

The preservation of the significant heritage properties along 7th Avenue is of paramount importance to the success of this project. Heritage Property Corporation plans to delicately restore each individual building and facade to maximize the block’s early twentieth-century splendour. Each of these properties has its own fascinating history which has nearly been forgotten over the years. The revival of this block hinges on recapturing the energy and charm that it once possessed. Attracting pedestrian traffic to one of the most intimidating blocks in the city will help to bring spirit and positive business back to these properties. The addition of a pedestrian friendly laneway, which has lovingly been dubbed “Heritage Alley”, will provide secure, well-lit access to 7th and 8th Avenue at all hours of the day.

Once restored, the historic properties will provide desirable space for businesses featuring ample storefronts and instant attention from LRT traffic. Local arts groups have shown a great deal of interest in securing gallery and studio space once the restoration of the buildings has been completed. Heritage Property Corporation believes that using the buildings as arts and culture space would be an ideal fit for the area, especially with Art Central already located across the street. Seventh Avenue would cement its status as an important hub in Calgary’s arts community.

 

Seventh Avenue Autopark Inc.

To enliven businesses in the area and provide economic feasibility to the project, Heritage Property Corporation intends to construct an automated parking facility with the capacity to park up to 360 vehicles. These types of parkades have been used for decades in Europe and Asia, and have also seen great success in American cities.   The facility would use 40% less ground area than a traditional parking structure while condensing eight levels of parking into a six storey building.

Operation of the user-friendly system consists of pulling your vehicle into an “entry cabin”, then turning off, exiting and locking your vehicle. Complete the process by simply swiping your access card or credit card at the computer kiosk and leaving for the day.   Your car will then be transported to an appropriate, vacant parking space. Upon your return, swipe your access card and your vehicle will be delivered to the “entry cabin”, pointed in the right direction for your exit (no reversing required) at which time you can enter your vehicle and drive away.

The second phase of development will be the construction of a 165,000 square foot office building above the parkade. 

Once Heritage Property Corporation secures City approval, construction of Canada’s first automated parking facility will begin — an impressive accomplishment for Calgary.

 

Watch Global Calgary's exclusive interview with Heritage Property Corporation president, Neil Richardson.

 

Read more in the Calgary Herald's follow up interview with Neil Richardson.    

 

View the answers to our frequently asked questions.

 

 

Register for more information about investing in Seventh Avenue Autopark Inc.

 

 


A Rich History...

A nearly intact streetscape of early-twentieth century structures stands on the south side of 7th Avenue between Centre Street and 1st Street SW.  Steeped in Calgary's rich history, these buildings tell the story of business in our city. They have witnessed Calgary's growth from prairie-town to big city, chronicling our prosperity, innovation and struggles along the way.  

Between 1900 and 1914, the block was transformed from a lightly-developed residential block to a bustling commercial centre. Beginning in 1923, and as late as the 1950s, 7th Avenue was part of the Calgary Stampede parade route. This block was a favourite vantage point for photographers trying to capture the excitement and festivities. Seventh Avenue was also part of the motorcade route for the Prince of Wales’ visit in 1919 and for the Calgary Stampeders’ post-Grey Cup parade in 1949.

This important stretch of 7th Avenue began declining as a shopping district when 8th Avenue became the Stephen Avenue pedestrian mall in 1969. The area saw another sharp decline in business following the  conversion of 7th Avenue into the city’s downtown Light Rail Transit (LRT) corridor in 1980.

This significant group of buildings backs on to the Stephen Avenue pedestrian mall and Calgary’s National Historic District. Undoubtedly, the restoration of these properties will further enrich one of Calgary’s most important blocks.  

 

Stuart Block  

Stuart Block
115 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta 


Stuart Block was built in 1911 by T. R. Stuart and originally housed the T. R. Stuart & Co. Hardware Store. The upper two floors remain divided into apartments.  The building is designed in the Edwardian Commercial style with ground level retail and two levels of apartments above. The retail storefront has been completely modified, but it retains a recessed entrance typical of the original design. The pressed tin signband cornice remains intact. The upper façade is constructed of brick with side pilasters featuring vertical recessed panels. Original double hung wood windows are intact. The parapet is finished with pressed metal entablature. A large carved sandstone scroll/bracket detail is located centrally, just below the pressed metal entablature.

 

Mills Block

 

Mills Block
119 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta


Mills Block was built in 1921 by Calgary lawyer and businessman, Adam Francis Hirst Mills. The building’s first recorded occupant was the Self Serving Grocery from 1924 to 1926. It was one of the first stores in Calgary where shoppers chose the items from the shelves themselves and then brought them to the clerk for purchase.

 

Klossoski Block

 

Klossoski Block 

121 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta


Klossoski Block was built in 1920 by T. J. Klossoski, manager of the City Hall Market. From 1920 and well into the 1930s, this building was home to Hinds Meatateria, owned by Alfred Hinds. This building occupies the site of Calgary's first electric powerhouse, established in 1887 by the Calgary Electric Lighting Company Ltd. 
 

 

 

 

Rochon Block

 

Rochon Block
123 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta


Rochon Block was built in 1912 for confectioner Emmanuel Rochon. Though Rochon’s Ltd. had a main store on 8th Avenue SW, this location functioned as its candy and icecream factory as well as a secondary retail outlet. Rochon’s is believed to have been the first business of its kind in Calgary.

 

Delamere Block

  Delamere Block
125 & 127 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta

Delamere Block was built in 1912 for James Delamere Lafferty, a prominent Calgary physician, businessman, and local politician. The building was designed to create the impression of two distinct businesses with separate entrances.

Calgary Stock Exchange

  
Calgary Stock Exchange
129 – 7th Avenue SW, Calgary, Alberta

This building was constructed in 1914 to house the Calgary Stock Exchange. Although short lived, the CSE is a significant landmark in Calgary. Riddled with debt, the CSE sold the building to Senator Sir James A. Lougheed in 1915. The New Calgary Market operated in this space and the adjoining Delamere Block from 1916 to 1939.  A pedestrian bridge once connected the 7th Avenue Market and the Arcade on 8th Avenue. It is believed to have been Calgary’s original Plus-15 walkway.

Historic Plus-15 An artist's rendering of the completed Heritage Alley.
Left: The original Plus-15 walkway linked businesses on 7th Avenue and 8th Avenue. 
Right: Rehabilitation plans include recreating the raised walkway and enlivening the lane between 7th Avenue and 8th Avenue.

 

     

 



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