Edmonton Aviation Heritage Centre
British Commonwealth Training Air Training Plan Hanger
Edmonton Municipal Airport
Links and documents
Listed on the Canadian Register:
Statement of Significance
Description of Historic Place
Hangar #14 is a rectangular, one-storey, wooden flat-roofed aircraft hangar on a lot of 1.975 hectares positioned on the north side of Kingsway Avenue adjacent to the Edmonton City Centre Airport.
Hangar #14 is significant as a rare example of the hangars built in Canada under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan during World War Two. It is also associated with W.R. "Wop" May, the famous Canadian pilot, who helped run the Air Observers School.
Hangar #14 was constructed in 1942 at what was then the Edmonton Municipal Airport as a facility for the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP). The Plan trained pilots, navigators and other aircrew in Canada for duty overseas. With their low population density, big sky, and clear weather, the Canadian prairies were an ideal location for flight schools. Edmonton was chosen as the location for an Initial Training School, an Elementary Flying Training School, and an Air Observers School in No. 4 Training Command.
Hangar #14 served as a supply, staging, training and repair centre. It was used primarily by the Air Observers School and to store planes used in training. BCATP hangars were of standard design, but that design could be doubled in width and length depending on the need of the school; Hangar #14 is a double-wide, double-long model - the only such hangar known to survive in Canada - indicating the size and activity of the Edmonton school.
It's role in the BCATP gives Hangar #14 an international significance uncommon in Alberta structures. In addition, the hangar represents the Edmonton airport's role in the development of Canada's northland, and as a transportation hub in western Canada.
The Hangar is also associated with W.R. "Wop" May, Edmonton resident and one of the most prominent pilots in Canada's aviation history. After serving in the Royal Flying Corps during World War One, May flew as a bush pilot from Edmonton to northern communities. During the Second World War he was involved the Air Observers school at Hangar #14. The hangar was also home to the city of Edmonton's 418 Squadron after its return from Europe until 1957. Today it is home to the Edmonton Aviation Heritage Centre which houses a large number of restored and vintage aircraft.
Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 1827)
The heritage value of Hangar #14 is contained in such character-defining elements as:
- form, scale and massing of the building;
- lean-to additions on east and west elevations;
- flat roof layered in sheathing and asphalt;
- cedar siding shingles;
- slab concrete floors of hangar proper;
- exposed framing including Douglas fir vertical wood posts supporting long Warren trusses, reinforced with bays of double diagonal frames; truss system of connection with steel bolts and split ring connector;
- top-hung, horizontal sliding, steel section doors, complete with hardware and exposed tracks;
- fenestration patterns: multi-pane clerestory windows and multi-pane single hung windows in the addition;
- exposed surface-rim conduit, wires and brackets;
- open interior layout with spaces for administration, storage, workshop and mechanical equipment;
- remnants or artifacts from BCATP period.
Province of Alberta
Historical Resources Act
Provincial Historic Resource
Theme - Category and Type
- Governing Canada
- Military and Defence
Function - Category and Type
- Air Transport Facility
Architect / Designer
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. 1827)
Cross-Reference to Collection
Hangar #14 is a tall, one-storey rectangular plan structure, with lean-to additions on the east and west sides. The interior consists of an exposed heavy timber truss system…