Home / Accueil

LETHBRIDGE CANADIAN PACIFIC RAILWAY STATION

801 - 1 Avenue South, Lethbridge, Alberta, T1J, Canada

Formally Recognized: 1987/05/04

Lethbridge CPR Station (2007); Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch
General view from southeast
Lethbridge CPR Station (2007); Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch
Partial view from northwest
Lethbridge CPR Station (2007); Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch
Partial south facade

Other Name(s)

n/a

Links and documents

Construction Date(s)

1905/01/01 to 1906/01/01

Listed on the Canadian Register: 2009/04/01

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place

The Lethbridge Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) Station is a primarily two-storey rectangular building with an off-centre octagonal tower, brick and wood exterior and large overhanging eaves. It was constructed in 1905-1906. It is located at 801-1st Avenue South in Lethbridge.

Heritage Value

The heritage value of the Lethbridge Canadian Pacific Railway Station lies is its association with the coal mining industry and the importance of railroads in the development of Lethbridge as the major urban centre in southern Alberta. While the interior of the building has been significantly altered, the exterior remains largely intact and is a good example of CPR station architecture.

Historically the Lethbridge CPR Station is associated with Alberta's coal-mining heritage, an industry that had great impact upon the development of that city. It also serves to demonstrate the impact railways, particularly the CPR, had on the development of Alberta's urban areas. In 1895, in order to exploit coal deposits in the area, a branch line connected Lethbridge, then called Coalbanks, to the main CPR line. After this connection had been made, the population of the Lethbridge area began to increase and Lethbridge began to eclipse Fort Macleod as the major urban centre in southern Alberta. In 1898, the branch line was extended into the Crowsnest Pass, giving the CPR access to the larger coal deposits located there. This development further solidified Lethbridge as an important centre. This importance was confirmed in 1905, when the CPR named it as a divisional point and relocated most of its southern Alberta operations here from Fort Macleod. The grounds around the station once featured other structures characteristic of a divisional point of this importance, such as outbuildings and a roundhouse. After receiving the designation of divisional point, the population of Lethbridge expanded rapidly and the community soon became one of Alberta's leading cities.

Architecturally the Lethbridge CPR station's exterior is a good example of that company's urban stations in western Canada. The CPR, like many railway companies, used a series of standardized designs for many of its railway stations. One common theme was for the relative importance of the centre served to be reflected in the size of the station. Lethbridge, being the main divisional point on the Crowsnest line, was given a design that reflected this importance. There are three other large urban CPR stations remaining in Alberta that exhibit similar characteristics: Medicine Hat (1906), Strathcona (1907), and Red Deer (1910). The Lethbridge station is a 10.4 metre by 82.3 metre structure, of which approximately 42.7 metres has two storeys. The building's most distinctive feature is its slightly off-centre octagonal tower with conical roof. The station is a wood frame structure with a brick veneer, supported by a sandstone foundation. The building exhibits a long roof line with projecting eaves, supported by large decorative brackets. The second storey features six hipped-roof dormer double windows. The ground floor and the tower are faced with brick and the second floor with wood siding. Despite changes in use over the years the Lethbridge CPR station remains a good example of early twentieth century CPR station design.

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 861)

Character-Defining Elements

Key elements that define the site's heritage value include its:
- scale, form, and massing;
- exterior design elements that reflect standardized CPR railway station plans;
- balanced composition of design elements across the entire building and uniform rhythm of structural openings including the window patterns;
- octagonal tower with conical roof;
- hipped roof with large overhanging eaves supported by exposed wooden brackets;
- long roofline with cedar shingle roofing;
- fenestration pattern of bay windows on lower storey of the tower, rectangular windows throughout the building and dormer windows on upper storey;
- exterior walls clad in red brick on the ground floor and wood siding on the upper storey;
- sandstone foundation;
- east-west orientation reflects direction of CPR rail line through Lethbridge.

Recognition

Jurisdiction

Alberta

Recognition Authority

Province of Alberta

Recognition Statute

Historical Resources Act

Recognition Type

Provincial Historic Resource

Recognition Date

1987/05/04

Historical Information

Significant Date(s)

n/a

Theme - Category and Type

Developing Economies
Communications and Transportation
Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life
Architecture and Design

Function - Category and Type

Current

Historic

Transport-Rail
Station or Other Rail Facility

Architect / Designer

n/a

Builder

n/a

Additional Information

Location of Supporting Documentation

Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 861)

Cross-Reference to Collection

Fed/Prov/Terr Identifier

4665-0488

Status

Published

Related Places

n/a

SEARCH THE CANADIAN REGISTER

Advanced SearchAdvanced Search
Find Nearby PlacesFIND NEARBY PLACES PrintPRINT
Nearby Places