Salvation Army Citadel

Active in the city since 1893, the Salvation Army built this for their sixth home in Edmonton; it later became the first home of the Citadel Theatre.

Dedicated by the national commissioner of the Salvation Army Charles Rich in 1925, this robust brick building was designed by local architects Magoon & MacDonald to have a fortress-like feel, while at the same time conveying the Salvation Army’s ecclesiastical qualities with its striking vertical disposition. The stronghold features include the flat roof with crenellated towers and gabled parapets in each corner, the off-centre corbelled brick balcony halfway up the north tower, and the arched entrance. The slender tower with the elaborate design in the vertical brick piers, polychrome brick, and tile accents add reverence to the building. The structure has two storeys at the front with a large hall throughout the rest of the building. Significantly repurposed inside, the lasting elements of the original building are the façade, double doors, and open beam ceiling.

Staff Captain Arthur Young visited Edmonton for the Salvation Army in 1886. As a church and one of the city’s leading social services agency, the Salvation Army held its first services in Edmonton in McDougall Methodist Church in 1893. They erected a hall at the present site of the Edmonton Journal Building later that year, then met on Queen’s Avenue in 1894, moved to Robinson Hall on Jasper Avenue in 1903, and then built a new wooden hall at 10227-98 Street. In 1925 they opened this building as a permanent facility for their administration and for religious purposes, the same year they opened Grace Hospital in the city. The following year they established the Bonnie Doon Eventide Home for Men, the country’s first senior’s home. After the Salvation Army moved to the vacated Central Pentecostal Tabernacle in 1965, Joe Shoctor, Sandy Mactaggart, Ralph MacMillan, John Soprovich, and J.L. Martin bought the old building for $100,000 and established the Citadel Theatre here. It was the first live theatre the city had seen in twenty years. The success of the company enabled them to build their own theatre on Churchill Square in 1976. The Salvation Army Citadel was then extensively remodelled to become home to the Marvel School of Beauty. The floor was levelled, the walls repainted, and the furnaces and electrical systems were upgraded. Since then the building has been home to a number of other commercial ventures and concert venues.

Details

Type

Religious

Designation Status

Municipal Historic Inventory

Neighbourhood

Downtown

Year Built

1925

Architectural Styles

Collegiate Gothic

Character Defining Elements

Rectangular footprint , Gabled parapet , Brick structure , Balcony , Brick piers , Tile accents , Stone accents , Rectangular windows , Tracery , Towers , Arched entrance , Two storeys , Flat roof

Gallery

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