The thing you always need to remember about Calgary is that it is one city. Though it is divided up into wards, and police precincts and communities, there are no equal, competing political offices like with most big cities. This was not by chance or circumstance- for many years The City of Calgary was intent on maintaining a non-metropolitan, unicity model to control development from a single central government. After World War II, the unicity model was combined with a suburban sprawl philosophy, leading the city to annex more land for both growth and control. This was evident in the treatment of Midnapore. Had Calgary not annexed the area, the city would have inevitably been hemmed in to the south by Fish Creek- besides the growth in lot sales and development in the hamlet after World War II, the Burns family had plans to develop their land holdings south of Fish Creek, where the community of Midnapore lies today. These plans were blocked in 1956 by the Calgary District Planning Commission, whose members decided such satellite communities were not in the area’s best interest. In 1961 Calgary annexed Midnapore, as well as Forest Lawn, as part of the largest land grab in the city’s history, adding on more than 70 square miles. With Montgomery and Bowness added in 1963 and 1964, respectively, Calgary’s total area was brought to 154 square miles before the end of the 1960s.
Bag from a&b sound, boasting about the chain’s ubiquity in Western Canada at its height.
Alright, this one gets a little personal.
If you really want to put things into perspective, there may be nothing better than looking at an old electronics flyer. The bulky, expensive, low-fidelity TVs and stereos. Computers at ridiculous prices with processing power a fraction of the average smart phone today. What may be strangest though is media, and music in particular. I’m sure kids today will find it hard to comprehend that there was a time when you didn’t have access to nearly every song ever recorded from wherever you like. Even the P2P services like LimeWire and Kazaa that were accessible, popular and ground-breaking when I was growing up seem so archaic now; no doubt YouTube and Spotify will seem ancient and strange in a few years as well. Of course I always preferred physical media and got pretty swept up in buying CDs in the early 2000s (and if I’m being honest they’re still what I prefer, although I have to admit, Spotify has been awesome). And if you really want some perspective and more than a little appreciation, look back at how much money we used to spend on things like that. Hell, I can barely comprehend the idea of spending $25 on a CD with one good song on it and I’ve actually done it. Continue reading Condos- A&B Sound→
Calgary is a well-organized city. The sprawl and the array of topography obscures this, but I think at some point the planners really got it right with the city’s layout.
It begins with the grid: Continue reading Road Names→
I feel like most Calgarians have bastardized the pronounciation, and it comes out more like “MIN-da-pore”, than “mid-na-PORE”
It’s a pretty unique name. I went to high school outside The Deep South, and when I told people from other parts of the city where I lived, they noted how exotic it sounded, like it was another country. As it turns out, there is a reason it sounds like some exotic, far-off place- it is. Continue reading Community Names→
The old Unifeed/ Shur-Gain elevator that stood by Macleod Trail in Millrise, heavily damaged from both demolition and graffiti, circa 2004. It was demolished in July of that year. Photo gallery link. Photo credit: Joshua Soles
Wow, this photo. For some reason I thought of the building in late 2011, and it took me nearly two years, until late 2013, to actually find a decent picture of it (and, seeing as how this was posted back in 2004, the whole scenario makes me seriously reconsider my internet skills. Then again, you can only handle so many links to mechanics in India, before you give up Googling “midnapore elevator” completely).
In the meantime, my initial search for the elevator had led me to read about the Ogden Grain Elevator, which had been demolished just a week before. Reading the discussion about that building’s history, landmark status, and whether or not it could have been saved, led me down a path of urban studies and local history that continues to this day in the works presented here. Beyond that, I didn’t have a lot of interaction with the building. I remember seeing it on car rides home as a kid, along with the spinning SOUTHSIDE SELF STORAGE neon sign, just south of it and barely visible in the photo above. I remember the big white building, with the orange stripe, and the writing on it. When my older brother had a hamster, our dad suggested he get feed there. I also remember seeing it from the Midlake/Shawnessy Boulevard overpass, while walking to A&B Sound to buy Clash and 54-40 CDs back in 2004. It was only a short distance away from that “purple warehouse”, and in retrospect , I wish I had gone to take a closer look. Because a few months later, it was torn down. Continue reading Landmarks- The Feed Elevator→