Winnipeg Free Press - ONLINE EDITION

New light shed on tunnels

  • Print

It’s an urban myth that refuses to die—until now.

It’s the one about the tunnel that runs from Union Station on Main Street to the Fort Garry Hotel on Broadway, and underneath the storied Manitoba Club that sits between.

The myth goes the tunnel was sometimes used to smuggle prostitutes into the Manitoba Club.

But there is no tunnel, according to city records, and never was.

All that remains are the faint remnants of a large underground pipe that ran from a plant at The Forks -- now a TV studio -- under Main Street to the hotel. It was used to carry steam heat to keep the hotel warm in winter.

But there’s a ‘but’ in this myth.

There was a tunnel at another train station and another hotel a few blocks north on Main Street.

It ran through the basement of the Canadian Pacific's Royal Alexandra Hotel that once stood on Higgins Avenue.

Blueprints for the hotel, opened in 1906, show a basement corridor that ran from a revolving door on Higgins, down some steps and around the front perimeter of the hotel, down its eastern side and underground towards the train station farther down the block on Higgins.

The tunnel, or corridor, was built to allow train passengers to walk in warmth from the station to the hotel's front desk, roughly a half-a-block walk.

The blueprints to the hotel have been preserved by the City of Winnipeg Archives.

The hotel was torn down in 1971 after sitting virtually empty for several years. The station was closed to passenger rail service in 1978 is now home to the Aboriginal Centre.

We went looking for what if anything remains of that tunnel. Watch the video above to see what we found.

video player to use on WFP
Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Humans of the Holidays

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A nesting goose sits on the roof of GoodLife Fitness at 143 Nature Way near Kenaston as the morning sun comes up Wednesday morning- See Bryksa’s Goose a Day Photo- Day 07- Web crop-May 09, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • A young gosling prepares to eat dandelions on King Edward St Thursday morning-See Bryksa 30 Day goose challenge- Day 17- bonus - May 24, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What's your take on the Jets so far this season?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google