Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 23/8/2016 (306 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Fancy including a bit of Winnipeg’s history in your yard or home?
Shelmerdine Garden Centre (7800 Roblin Blvd.) in Headingley has a selection of pieces taken from some of Winnipeg’s former landmarks that were demolished in the past 50-odd years. These include the Royal Alexandra Hotel at Main St. and Higgins Ave. and the McIntyre Block that was once situated at 416 Main St.
The granite and Tyndall stone chunks carry certificates of authenticity from Heritage Winnipeg so the new owners can be sure of where their pieces originated.
Heritage Winnipeg executive director Cindy Tugwell said the building shards were saved from Winnipeg structures that were demolished prior to her organization’s formation with the mandate to preserve local buildings with historic value.
"The shards have been moved around. Some of these buildings have been demolished for decades," she said.
Heritage Winnipeg was looking for a way to market the shards.
"We want to see them in building projects," Tugwell said. "Our biggest problem was distribution."
Shelmerdine Garden Centre owners Nicole Bent and Chad Labbe learned about the shards last year. Bent said when she went to the field where the shards were then located, she knew her company should become a partner in the project.
The garden centre’s equipment was used to move the heavy stone pieces, and the shards are now arranged outside the centre. They are marked with information on where each came from. Heritage Winnipeg has helped determine the prices.
"We have sold about five pieces," Bent said, with a recent purchase made for a spouse’s birthday.
Tugwell said she’s hoping local architects will become interested in incorporating a piece of Winnipeg’s history in their designs. She gave the example of the façade from the Alloway and Champion Building, which once stood at 362 Main St., being used in a decorative garden area near The Forks.
"I don’t think there’s any other city in Canada that has this type of project," she said.
For more information on the shards, see www.shelmerdine.com/past