Did you know that the current downtown Farmer’s market building used to be the Great Western Garment Co. owned by Alexander Rutherford? Or that the space where Canada Place sits was previously the Alberta Hotel, which was carefully dismantled numbered brick by brick in 1984? These are just a few local facts we learned from Dan Rose, as he guided us on a walking tour titled ‘A Century of Architecture and Design in Edmonton.’The tour highlighted many historic buildings in the downtown area including the Gibson Block, the Alberta Hotel, and the Fairmont Hotel Macdonald – named after Canada’s first prime minister Sir John A. Macdonald.
One stop on the tour included our very own home in the Royal Alberta Museum. You might be familiar with the new building built last Fall, but back in the 60’s it used to be the former Canada Post building. The post office opened in 1966 and closed in the 1990’s, but remnants of it still remain in the design of the museum. You can find the original historic clock on the exterior of the building, as well as the Ernestine Tahedl mosaic artworks created for Canada Post, in nearly the exact same position as they occupied on the previous building. The red and grey colours in the mosaic tiles actually inspired RAM to incorporate those colours into its branding.
Did you miss out on this or our other walking tours this summer? Our final Walk and Tour takes place September 5 and is currently full but you can join the wait list by clicking here.