Edmonton Cold Storage Company, Ltd.

This four-storey brick cold-storage building is a relatively unadorned example of a building from what collectively became Edmonton's early warehouse district.

Aghast that Edmontonians were importing eggs and New Zealand butter when he arrived in the city in 1909, wholesale grocer and produce merchant Aubrey S. Duclos devoted his life's work to promoting local products such as pultry, dairy, and produce. With no local facilities availableto keep dairy and cold storage, Duclos built the Edmonton Cold Storage Co., Ltd. building in 1912 at the corner of Peace Avenue and Fourth Street. The warehouse could handle 125 rail cars worth of cold storage and had a private spur line at the rear of the building for loading and unloading goods. For over three decades, Duclos, president of numerous other wholesale produce, grocery, and cold storage companies, made it his rule to handle Alberta products first and gave incentives to producers who would grow an item missing from the local markets.

The simple brick warehouse was originally a three-storey building, 130 feet by 50 feet (40 metres by 15 metres) in size, built by H. J. Moore at a cost of $10,000. According  to the Edmonton Bulletin, Duclos' "enterprise represent[ed] an investment of $150,000" by 1913 and, with the addition of an extra storey, the building created 26,000 square feet of cold storage. While at first glance this building looks very plain, it was designed with purpose. The building lacks windows on the upper floors to help keep things cool. In contrast to many other buildings erected at the time, the Edmonton Cold Storage building is very simple, however, it does sport a number of characteristics shared among other Edwardian buildings of period, including brick construction with stone accents, painted signage, a flat roof, and (basic) ornamentation like dentils, lintels, stringcourse and corbelling.

The single purpose building was renovated in 1978, but relatively quickly stood unused for a number of years. The Edmonton Cold Storage Co. Ltd. building was torn down to allow for a parkade in 1986.

Details

Type

Commercial

Designation Status

Demolished

Neighbourhood

Downtown

Year Built

1912

Architects

H. J. Moore

Architectural Styles

Edwardian

Character Defining Elements

Rectangular footprint , Three storeys or more , Brick structure , Flat roof , Dentil , Lintel , Painted signage , Plinth , Pilaster , String course , Corbelling

Gallery

Subscribe to our newsletter