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Fifth Avenue Memorial United Church

Medicine Hat

Other Names:
Fifth Avenue Methodist Church

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
Fifth Avenue Methodist Church, first built at its present site in 1913 and re-built following a devastating fire in 1931, holds heritage value. Renamed Fifth Avenue United Church in 1925 and Fifth Avenue Memorial United Church in 1998, the church is valued as a community instituition that has served the religious needs of Medicine Hat for over a century.

Heritage Value
In addition to being valued as a religious institution, it is also valued for its architecture, workmanship, building materials and as a historic landmark.

Originally designed by William T. Williams, it is valued as an excellent example of Arts and Crafts architecture in Medicine Hat with its beautifully crafted formal massing, its elegant crenellated towers with corner brick buttress accented with lancet windows and louvres, exposed rafter tails, and massive ogee arched stained glass windows. Architects of the 1931 restoration used the remaining architectural elements in its redesign.

Fifth Avenue Memorial United Church is further valued as an example of the high quality of Medicine Hat's institutional architecture, workmanship and manufactured building materials.

The church is also valued as a historic landmark sitting prominently on a corner lot in downtown Medicine Hat. Its placement and form, scale, and massing contribute to its commanding presence.

Character-Defining Elements
The character-defining elements of Fifth Avenue Memorial United Church include the following:

- form, scale and massing as expressed by its two-storey height with full basement, side-gabled roof, rectangular plan with three square corner towers, and three-storey square bell tower;
- steel frame construction with red pressed brick and red-tooled mortar and Bedford sandstone detailing;
- Arts and Crafts details such as pier buttresses with sandstone caps, square towers topped with crenellations, sandstone watertable, sills, lintels, and decorative wooden fascia, exposed rafters, and recessed arched entry; and
- original fenestrations including large ogee-shaped arched stained glass windows, lancet stained glass windows, and large double wooden main entry doors with stained glass transom.


Street Address: 476 - 4 Street SE
Community: Medicine Hat
Boundaries: Lots 12, 13 and 14, Block 21, Plan 36556
Contributing Resources: Buildings: 1

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
12,13 AND 14

Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
50.038306 -110.677585

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type
5542940 523088


Recognition Authority: Local Governments (AB)
Designation Status: Municipal Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 2019/01/22

Historical Information

Built: 1911 to 1931
Significant Date(s) 1906 to 1913
Theme(s) Building Social and Community Life : Religious Institutions
Historic Function(s): Religion, Ritual and Funeral : Religious Facility or Place of Worship
Current Function(s):
Architect: Fordyce & Stevenson (1931)
William T. Williams (1911-1913)
Builder: Lussier Construction Co.(1911-1913)

Additional Information

Object Number: 4664-0078
Designation File:
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File: HS 11907
Website Link: www.medicinehat.ca
Data Source: City of Medicine Hat, City Clerk Department, 580 - 1st Street SE Medicine Hat, AB T1A 8E6
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