Our theme for March is Historic Buildings, and for our Sister City Sketch with Calgary Urban Sketchers this week, we sketched a historic structure of our choice. It didn’t have be in danger of imminent demolition, and it didn’t have to have a heritage designation – just a historic structure that appealed to us or one that we’ve always loved. Lots of great sketches came in!
For this coming week, we will be gathering for our first sketch-out of the year (Covid-modified) to sketch the historic horse barn on the University of Alberta Farm on Saturday March 20 from 11am to 1pm. This is a sketch from your vehicle event. If you are not able to join us, you may come on your own at another time or sketch from a photograph (indicate this with your sketch). It would be great to see everyone – from a safe distance!
Go here to see Calgary Urban Sketchers’ beautiful Sister City Sketches of the historic Eau Claire & Bow River Lumber Co. and other historic building sketches on their blog.
Here are Edmonton Urban Sketchers inspired historic sketches for this past week:
“Today’s historic structure: The Bennett Center in Cloverdale. My first time sketching outside since the fall. It’s been too long.”
The Bennett Environmental Education Centre on 97 Ave and 94 St began as the Bennett School, built in 1913 in the Cloverdale neighbourhood of Edmonton, and named after Strathcona’s first mayor and early school trustee Thomas Bennett.
“A success story. The old Molson Brewery conversion now is The Brewery District and houses businesses – a district now as others were built around it. This view from 121 Street (N of 104 Ave) is great to sketch. March 14, 2021. Graphite. Ljtl. Grey day into evening so photo blued.”
The Molson Brewery was originally built in 1913 as the Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company. It was designated a Municipal Historic Resource in 2015.
“Westminster Apartments elegant pre-WW1 lodgings. Designed in Edwardian style using fancy brick work along the facade. Built in 1912. One of the first apartment buildings in Edmonton located on 100th Ave and 114 St. A desirable location for affluent and prominent Edmontonians. Shadows of the big old elms were being cast on the building when I was there in the late afternoon.”
“Gibbard Block in my neighborhood of historic Highlands from google earth drive by.”
The Gibbard Block was built in 1913 on 64 St and 112 Ave in the Highlands neighbourhood of Edmonton as an apartment building. It was restored in 2018 by Sparrow Capital and now houses restaurants and commercial space.
“A sad story of upcoming demolition. These are solid historic brick buildings and they are the last two structures from the railyards era that dominated our downtown streetscape for almost a century. The buildings are at 111 St and 104 Ave in Oliver Crossing. Now nothing will remain to commemorate this important era. I sketched one of these today and the two others in 2019.”
For a bit of balance to my other post, here is a good news story. I made this sketch in 2019 when Hangar 11 was in imminent danger of demolition. Concerned citizens managed a stay of demolition. Just recently, the City drafted a sales agreement to sell the hangar to Archituer Inc., with a heritage designation proviso. The developer will be maintaining the historical integrity of the building in their design.
Built in 1942 on the NE corner of Blatchford Field (later Municipal Airport), Hangar 11 is one of only two remaining WWII-era hangars there. It was built in partnership with the US Air Force and served a vital function in the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan during the war. It was an airport in the Northwest Staging Route and helped move American bombers, fighters and transport planes though to Alaska and the Soviet Union, in what became a crucial program in the Allied war effort.
“Rough sketch for Garneau Rutherford House. One of the 12 YEG Old House Paintings project.”
“Sharing Garneau Rutherford House summer garden. Work in progress”
Rutherford House, on the NE edge of the University of Alberta campus, was built in 1911 for Dr. Alexander Cameron Rutherford, Alberta’s first premier, serving from 1905 to 1910. This elegant house was almost demolished in 1966. After public outcry, the house was saved and restored to its former glory. It was designated a Provincial Historic Resource in 1979 and is now a museum.
“The historic Mill Creek bridge on 82 Ave.”
This bridge carries vehicle traffic over Edmonton’s Mill Creek Ravine. There are another 5 historic pedestrian bridges that traverse the nature trails of Mill Creek Ravine Park in the Ritchie/King Edward Park area of the ravine. This peaceful oasis was once threatened. In the 1960s, Edmonton’s Transportation Department proposed a freeway connecting Cloverdale and downtown through the west side of the ravine, under 82nd Ave, curving through 91st St, through Argyll to reach the QE 2 highway. Opposition from community leagues, the head of parks and recreation, and individuals halted the destruction.
“The Stovel Block on 97 street was in the news this week. I drive past it all the time and it’s looked rundown for quite a while, so I was pleased to find that it is being renovated to provide transitional housing for women. An historic building being repurposed. Yay! Sketched on my iPad from a CTV photo.”
The Stovel Block at 97 St and 103a Ave was built in 1912 as a commercial building for local businesses. It was built by James Stovel and his wife Mary, one of the first hardware merchants in Edmonton. It was saved from demolition in 2018 by designation as a Municipal Historic Resource, and Gather Co. will be repurposing it to bring this housing initiative to the community.
“My neighborhood, Riverdale, is gradually filling up with large, modern housing, replacing many of the modest, one-story family homes built in the earlier part of the last century. But there are still a number of these old homes still hanging in, like these three that look like old friends. Sketched on location on my iPad with minimal touch ups at home (trees again, and that enormous tree stump on the right).”
Riverdale is a one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Edmonton, near the North Saskatchewan River and Edmonton’s downtown.
“Juneau House , 1890. Home of Michif Institute, Metis Living Museum in St. Albert.”
Built in 1890, Juneau House is St. Albert’s oldest residence. The house is named after its first owners—brothers Edmund and Frank Juneau. Edmund married Marie Beauchemin, a Blackfoot woman from Montana, and worked as a farmer and schoolboard trustee. Frank was a carpenter and trader. In 2004, Juneau House became Senator Dr. Thelma J. Chalifoux constituency office. As the first Métis woman appointed to the Senate of Canada, she established the Michif Cultural Institute in Juneau House as a Métis cultural centre.
“Collapsed house behind trees.”
“Not really historic…. we went to Edmonton nut and bolt and this is someone’s garage across Argyle St that I could see and sketch from the parking lot. There was a weathered red fence and lovely mottled moss creeping over the grey roof.”
“I didn’t get to sketch a heritage building but I did sketch what I saw outside my hotel in Jasper this weekend. It was lovely to get away.”
Posted by Marlena Wyman