Buildings in Winnipeg's Exchange District
|Location||Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada|
|Original use||Warehouse district|
|Current use||Mixed use|
|Governing body||Exchange District BIZ, Heritage Winnipeg|
The Exchange District is a National Historic Site of Canada in the downtown area of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. Just one block north of Portage and Main, the Exchange District comprises twenty city blocks and approximately 150 heritage buildings,and it is known for its intact early 20th century collection of warehouses, financial institutions, and early terra cotta clad skyscrapers.
The Exchange is home to the Manitoba Museum as well as the Planetarium and a Science Gallery.The Exchange District spans two distinct areas, the East Exchange and the West Exchange. The east Exchange area is located between the Disraeli Bridge, Waterfront Drive, William Stephenson Way and Main Street, and the West Exchange is bounded by Adelaide Street, Ross Avenue, Notre Dame Avenue and Main Street.
The Exchange District’s name originates from the Winnipeg Grain Exchange, the former centre of the grain industry in Canada, as well as other commodity exchanges which developed in Winnipeg between 1881–1918, some of which are still active today.(see Winnipeg Commodity Exchange)
Winnipeg was one of the fastest growing cities in North America around the turn of the 20th century. The city became known as the Chicago of the North. Much of Winnipeg’s remaining architecture of the late 1800s and early 1900s is heavily influenced by the Chicago style.By 1911, Winnipeg had become the third largest city in Canada. At the time it had more than two dozen rail lines converging near the city centre along with over 200 wholesale businesses.
World War I and the opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 slowed Winnipeg's growth, as there was a new route for shipping goods from Eastern Canada and Europe to Western Canada and from East Asia to the larger markets on the Eastern seaboard.As wholesale operations began to open in other Western Canadian cities, such as Edmonton, Moose Jaw, and Regina, Winnipeg's importance as a wholesale centre declined in the 1910s and 1920s. By the 1940s, many of the warehouses in the Exchange District had been converted into uses related to the garment trade.
As Winnipeg began to experience growth in the years following World War II, much of Winnipeg’s downtown development shifted to the area of downtown south of Portage Avenue, particularly along Broadway and on towards Osborne Village. The lack of new development, mixed with the existing demand for inexpensive wholesaling and manufacturing space, left the Exchange District largely intact. As a result, Winnipeg today has one of the most historically intact early 20th century commercial districts in North America.
In the early 1980s the streetscaping in the area was improved with the creation of wider sidewalks, historically appropriate street furniture, lighting, and decorative paving patterns and materials.
On September 27, 1997, the Winnipeg Exchange District was declared a National Historic Site by then federal Minister of Canadian Heritage, Sheila Copps.
The Exchange District today thrives as one of Winnipeg's commercial and cultural centers, as home to an array of specialty retailers, restaurants, nightclubs, art galleries, wholesalers, and condos.
Winnipeg's theatre district is located on the east side of the Exchange District, home to the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre, and Centennial Concert Hall which houses the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, the Royal Winnipeg Ballet, and the Manitoba Opera.
The west side of the Exchange is home to Cinematheque, a small movie theatre located on the main floor of the Artspace building on Albert Street.
Red River College's Roblin Centre 220,000-square-foot (20,000 m2) building that features the original façades along Princess Street, and incorporates modern green building technology. The Roblin Centre's construction merged five prominent heritage buildings on Princess Street as well as a 1905 warehouse on William Avenue. It is home to approximately 200 staff and 2,000 students. The Centre has a focus on modern media, information technology, and business.is a
The Paterson Globalfoods Institute is a new addition to Red River College's Exchange District Campus as of 2013.The Institute is located at the Union Bank Building, an 11 storey building that dates back to 1903, and is the home of the Culinary Arts, Hospitality and Tourism Management and Professional Baking and Patisserie programs.
Old Market Square hosts the annual Jazz Winnipeg Festival, the Winnipeg Fringe Theatre Festival, and the Manitoba Electronic Music Exhibition. Its cobblestone streets and friendly pedestrian environment also contribute to The Exchange District's popularity as a period backdrop for the movie industry. Most notably the 2006 film The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford starring Brad Pitt, and the 2006 film The Lookout starring Jeff Daniels.
Old Market Square originated in 1889, initially as a public market building. Originally located on the site of what is now the Public Safety Building, it was the centre of Winnipeg's early commercial trade. In 1964 to 1965, the original building as well as several nearby structures were razed to make room for the current Civic Centre. In 1970, an "Old Market Square Association" was created to lobby for the preservation and improvement of the site.
In 1976, the national historic trust, Heritage Canada, announced a $500,000 grant to towards the purchase and restoration of significant buildings in the Old Market Square area, with a focus on Albert Street and what was then known as "Albert Street Park". The park became the venue for a farmer's market which brought momentum to the rejuvenation of the area. In 1990, a permanent stage was built in the park.
Begun in 2008 and completed in 2012, 28-foot (8.5 m) by 28-foot (8.5 m) cube is composed of a flexible curtain of diamond extrusions strung together. The curtain can be drawn back to reveal the stage within.a revitalization program began that improved landscaping, drainage, sod and lighting. Developed by Scatliff+Miller+Murray, the new area features a performance space, a sunken event lawn, serpentine seating wall and seating planters encircling elm trees. The focal point of the renovation was "The Cube", a new $1.5 million stage, with a skin made up of 20,000 aluminum links. Designed by 5468796 Architecture, the stage contains a built-in lighting system, green room and two performance levels, and was funded by the Winnipeg Foundation, CentreVenture and several levels of government. The
The cube has not functioned properly since it was opened in 2010.In summer 2012, the Cube was closed due to concerns about supports for the metal curtain. Repairs for the structure are planned for the spring of 2013 and are expected to include fixes for faulty lights and cooling fans, additional railings and handrails, alterations to the rear of the stage and accessibility improvements.
Plans are underway to redevelop the 2.4 acres (0.97 ha) site of the former Public Safety Building and Parkade (c. 1966). CentreVenture is in charge of choosing the design of Marketlands, featuring a farmers market and residential component. Demolition of the PSB will take place starting in the fall of 2019.
There are no high speed roads that pass through or near the Exchange District. Regular urban speed limits are observed on Portage Avenue, Main Street on the boundaries of the area.
There is a painted cycling lane along McDermot Ave. between Main St. and the HSC campus.
Several transit routes travel through the Exchange District: 1, 2, 3, 11, 12, 15, 16, 17, 18, 20, 21, 22, 24, 25, 32, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44, 45, 46, 47, 48.
At one time the Alexander Docks functioned as an urban dock in downtown Winnipeg which tourist riverboat the Paddlewheel Queen and others had used for decades. This has since been shut down and is in the process of being updated.
A pedestrian mall was proposed for the area in August 2010 by local architect Brent Bellamy. The proposed pedestrian mall would be located along two blocks of Albert Street to the Old Market Square and closed to automobile traffic. The hope of the mall would be to accentuate the uniqueness of the neighbourhood, attract workers from Portage and Main, and be sustained over the long-term with residential development in the area.
As the Centennial Centre area (Concert Hall, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Museum and Planetarium) are now over 50 years of age, there is a plan to upgrade and expand the venues.
The city had issued an RFP in 2007 to redevelop the Alexander Docks site, which had been built by the Federal government in 1929. Liberal Senator Rod Zimmer won the bidding process thru his proposed $10 million development plan which would include a boutique hotel (restaurant, meeting space) and marina.
A consortium comprising CentreVenture, the Manitoba Association of Architects, The Forks, the Exchange District BIZ, as well as several architectural firms held an international design competition, On the Docks,in 2018 for the redevelopment of Alexander Docks. Over 200 designs were entered. The winner of the design competition was Cornoiu Sabin of Romania for his "Alexander's Garden".
According to the 2016 census, the Exchange District has approximately 0.10% of Winnipeg's population with 630 people (+41.6%), up from 445 at the time of the 2011 census. The Exchange District makes up 0.1% of the city's total land area.
The district's population age is wide between early twenties and up; there is no dominant age group of residents. The district has a lower proportion of visible minorities, with only 13.5%, as compared to 28% for the whole of Winnipeg.Over 30.6% of respondents in the district reported as "Never married (single)", as compared to 31.4% of Winnipeg. The district lends itself to pedestrian travel: over 44.3% of employed respondents stated walking as their primary mode of transportation, significantly higher than the 4.9% reported for the entire city. The average employment income in the Exchange District is $79,831, as compared to $61,164 for Winnipeg as a whole.
Winnipeg is the capital and largest city of the province of Manitoba in Canada. It is centred on the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine rivers, near the longitudinal centre of North America.
Canada has a large domestic and foreign tourism industry. The second largest country in the world, Canada's incredible geographical variety is a significant tourist attractor. Much of the country's tourism is centred in the following (busiest) regions: Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver/Whistler, Niagara Falls, Vancouver Island, Calgary/Canadian Rockies, British Columbia's Okanagan Valley, and the national capital region Ottawa. The large cities are known for their culture, diversity, as well as the many national parks and historic sites.
Portage la Prairie is a small city in the Central Plains Region of Manitoba, Canada. As of 2016, the population was 13,304 and the land area of the city was 24.68 square kilometres (9.53 sq mi). Portage la Prairie is approximately 75 kilometres (47 mi) west of Winnipeg, along the Trans-Canada Highway, and sits on the Assiniboine River, which flooded the town persistently until a diversion channel north to Lake Manitoba was built to divert the flood waters. The city is surrounded by the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie.
Red River College (RRC) is a college located in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It is the province’s largest institute of applied learning and applied research, with over 200 degree, diploma and certificate programs and more than 21,000 students annually.
Portage and Main is an intersection in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It is located in downtown Winnipeg where Portage Avenue and Main Street intersect. The corner is known as the "crossroads of Canada", due to its relative proximity to the longitudinal centre of Canada.
East St. Paul is a rural municipality in Manitoba, Canada. It is located north-east of and adjacent to the city of Winnipeg, and is part of the Winnipeg Metropolitan Area. The municipality was formed on 3 November 1915 when the municipality of St. Paul (1888-1914) was subdivided into West St. Paul and East St. Paul, with the Red River acting as the dividing line. It encompasses 41 square kilometres (16 sq mi).
Downtown Winnipeg is an area of the city located near the confluence of the Red and Assiniboine rivers. It is the oldest urban area in Winnipeg, and is home to the city's commercial core, city hall, the seat of Manitoba's provincial government, and a number of major attractions and institutions.
The Forks is a historic site, meeting place and green space in Downtown Winnipeg located at the confluence of the Red River and the Assiniboine River. For at least 6000 years, the Forks has been the meeting place for early aboriginal peoples, and since colonization has also been a meeting place for European fur traders, Métis buffalo hunters, Scottish settlers, riverboat workers, railway pioneers and tens of thousands of immigrants.
Winnipeg lies at the bottom of the Red River Valley, a low-lying flood plain with an extremely flat topography. This valley was formed by the ancient glacial Lake Agassiz which has rich deposits of black soil. Winnipeg is on the eastern edge of the Canadian Prairies in Western Canada; it is known as the 'Gateway to the West'. It is relatively close to many large Canadian Shield lakes and parks, as well as Lake Winnipeg. Winnipeg is bordered by tallgrass prairie to the west and south and the aspen parkland to the northeast.
Portage Place is a 439,600 square foot mixed-use shopping centre located in Downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It is located on the north side of Portage Avenue, between Vaughan and Carlton Streets and opened on September 17, 1987.
The Old Market Autonomous Zone, or A-Zone, was founded in 1995, in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada by local activists Paul Burrows and Sandra Drosdowech, who also co-founded Winnipeg's Mondragon Bookstore. Its name is derived from "Old Market Square," the historic Exchange District in Winnipeg's downtown core area, combined with Hakim Bey's notion of a "Temporary Autonomous Zone". The Winnipeg A-Zone occupies a three-story building, originally built in 1899 and known as the "Imperial Dry Goods Building." Like many buildings in the area, it is classified as a heritage building by the City of Winnipeg. Since 1995, the building has been known locally as both the A-Zone, and sometimes the Emma Goldman Building.
The Winnipeg Walkway System, also known as the Winnipeg Skywalk, is a network of pedestrian skyways and tunnels connecting a significant portion of downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Route 57 is a major road located in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It connects the suburbs of St. James and St. Boniface with the West End and the downtown core.
The history of Winnipeg comprises its initial population by Aboriginal peoples through its settlement by Europeans to the present day. The first forts were built on the future site of Winnipeg in the 1700s, followed by the Selkirk Settlement in 1812. Winnipeg was incorporated as a city in 1873 and experienced dramatic growth in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Following the end of World War I, the city's importance as a commercial centre in Western Canada began to wane. Winnipeg and its suburbs experienced significant population growth after 1945, and the current City of Winnipeg was created by the unicity amalgamation in 1972.
Winnipeg Square is a shopping mall in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It was built in 1979 by Trizec Corporation, and is located downtown at Portage and Main with 45 stores and restaurants.
The Union Bank Building is located in the Exchange District of Winnipeg, Manitoba, once forming the northern end of Main Street's prestigious Banker's Row. The 10-storey building began construction in 1903, opening in November 1904, towering over its neighbours at a height of 47.58 meters (156').. Union Bank Tower was the first of Canada's tallest buildings to incorporate a steel skeleton structure that fully supports a light-weight, veneer 'curtain wall' facade, the design innovation that facilitated the proliferation of skyscrapers in the 20th century. This feature solidifies Union Bank Tower's place as the first building in Canada's modern skyscraper lineage. Earlier tall buildings in Toronto and Montreal used the centuries-old method of load bearing facades, that were more than one meter thick at the ground. At the time of opening, the top floor of Union Bank was the second-highest in the British Empire, one metre below London’s tallest building. It had the largest and fastest elevator in Western Canada and was the first building in Canada to introduce the modern concept of a general contractor to oversee construction. Initially built for Union Bank, it remained vacant for 18 years, until it was redeveloped into the Paterson Global Foods Institute and student housing for Red River College in 2013. It was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1996.
The Public Safety Building is a building in the Exchange District of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, that was used as the Winnipeg Police headquarters.
Broadway is a street in the city of Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. It is one of the city's oldest and most historic routes and forms the Trans-Canada Highway route through the city's downtown.
The Metropolitan Theatre is a Canadian theatre in downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba, designed by American architect C. Howard Crane. It is located at 281 Donald Street, across from Bell MTS Place and north of the Holy Trinity Anglican Church. It was originally known as Allen Theatre, after its owners the Allen brothers, who built a chain of cinemas throughout Canada in the early 20th century. After its acquisition by Famous Players in 1923, it was renamed the Metropolitan Theatre. It is now known as the Metropolitan Entertainment Centre or Met Entertainment Centre, or simply "The Met".
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