Calgary has come a long way since being established in 1875. From taller buildings and landscaped parks to a thriving population and vibrant nightlife, our city has an incredibly powerful presence – but it didn’t all happen overnight! Like Rome or an adult-friendly LEGO set, the 403 was not built in a day – and we’ve got the pictures to prove it.
From dirt roads to multimillion-dollar renovations, here are some incredibly cool photos of Calgary that show just how much work has been put into creating the growing metropolis that all know and love now.
STEPHEN AVENUE – 1909
With several restaurants, bars, patios and stop lights, Calgary’s Stephen Avenue is one of the most popular spots in the entire city and we have time, work and planning to thank for that. Sadly, it’s pretty rare that you’ll catch any horse-drawn carriages around here. Couldn’t we have kept those?
PRINCES ISLAND PARK
Though we can’t be sure if these photos were taken in the exact same place, it’s clear that times have changed. Not only has the city since added the iconic finger trap Peace Bridge, they’ve also added fountains, flattened the land and (as far as we know) have stopped allowing people to bring their horses onto the grass.
CENTRE STREET BRIDGE – 1943
The difference here is striking. In addition to newer, environmentally friendly cars, this particular photo shows a booming downtown, with tall buildings, constant construction and apartments in lieu of quaint houses.
KNOX UNITED CHURCH, 6TH AVENUE – 1969
Built in 1912, Knox United Church is a gorgeous building that has been maintained with respect to the ‘old days’ by the city. The same, however, cannot be said about its surroundings.
KING EDWARD HOTEL
With the addition of the Studio Bell Music Centre, the King Edward Hotel looks far smaller than we’re sure that it did long ago. Luckily, for history buffs and architect nuts, project designers chose to leave the inn untouched – building around it, instead.
THE PALLISER HOTEL – 1922
It’s Uncanny! Despite this photo being taken in the ’20s time hasn’t necessarily altered its appearance and honestly, we wouldn’t have it any other way.
CALGARY CITY HALL
Much like the Palliser, City Hall remains the same. In fact, Calgary just recently spent $34.1 million dollars to rehabilitate the 109-year-old building. Heck, they even brought in identical bricks from all over the world. That’s commitment!
So, there you have it. Crazy, right? It’s incredible to see how far we’ve come in the last 146 years, but what’s even crazier – is that in 20 years from now, it could look completely different. What do you hope to see, folks? Let us know in the comments – we want to hear from you!