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Administration Office Building

Edmonton

Other Names:

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
The Administration Office Building of the former Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company Ltd. is located on an industrial site consisting of the Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company Ltd. Building (built in 1913) and the associated Administration Office Building. The smaller Administration Office Building, built in 1924 or 1925 and expanded in 1955, is constructed of brick and exhibits simpler, but complementary, Classical Revival styling to the main brewery building.

Heritage Value
The Administration Office Building is significant as an industrial site; for its association with the brewing industry; and for its functional and subdued design and style.

Located in a former industrial area west of Edmonton’s downtown, the Administration Office Building was part of a significant, early industrial site, the Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company Ltd. The site was ideally located adjacent to railways and a major roadway, allowing for efficient shipping and receiving, and the nearby residential neighbourhoods and historic streetcar lines made it accessible for workers. The separation of administrative functions in the small, detached, more stylistically-subdued Administration Office Building is typical of twentieth century industrial sites in Alberta.

Built by the Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company to replace their smaller brewery in Rossdale, the overall facility went through numerous owners, ending its active days under the banner of Molson Canada. The brewery provides structural evidence of brewing in Alberta, and the corporate evolution of the industry from a local or regional enterprise to a nationally-oriented business.

Other elements that speak to the site’s role as a prominent brewery are its combination of practical design with fanciful Revivalist styling and the presence of prominent signage. Similar to the main brewery building, the Administration Office Building exhibits Classical Revival elements popular on many industrial buildings of its period. These elements include simulated brick cornices, window arches, dentils and modillions, and are found throughout both buildings.

The overall brewery site’s combination of practical design with artistic styling is a hallmark of its Chicago-based architect, Bernard Barthel. Specializing in industrial buildings, particularly breweries, Barthel’s designs deliberately belie their practical and functional purpose through the use of elegant, if rather fanciful, Revivalist details. Likely inspired by the strong Germanic brewing tradition of the United States and the popularity of Germanic architectural motifs in earlier and contemporaneous American breweries, such as the Anheuser-Busch brewery in St. Louis and the Pabst Brewery in Milwaukee, as well as his upbringing and training in his native Germany, Barthel’s breweries exhibit an appearance described as “castle-like” or “feudalistic.” Barthel designed industrial facilities and breweries across North America; however, little remains of his work. The Edmonton Brewing and Malting Company Ltd. Building, which bears a striking resemblance to his Schmidt Brewery in St. Paul, Minnesota, is an excellent example of his style. Barthel is not believed to have designed the Administration Office Building, but its design complements that of the main brewery building itself.


Character-Defining Elements
The heritage value of the Administration Office Building is expressed through such character-defining elements as:

• scaled-down design, less ornate style and subordinate stature relative to the nearby brewery building;
• red brick construction of exterior walls;
• simple sandstone or concrete cornice;
• Classical Revival design elements, such as the simulated brick cornices, dentils, modillions and parapets; and
• fenestration pattern and extant historic windows with simple flat sandstone or concrete lintels and brick sills.


Location



Street Address: 11904 – 104 Avenue NW
Community: Edmonton
Boundaries: Portion of Lot 2, Block 21, Plan 1425753
Contributing Resources: Buildings: 1

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
1425753
21
2


Latitude/Longitude:
Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
53.5471 -113.53 Secondary Source NAD83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type

Recognition

Recognition Authority: Local Governments (AB)
Designation Status: Municipal Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 2016/02/16

Historical Information

Built: 1924 or 1925
Significant Date(s) 1924/1925 to present
Theme(s)
Historic Function(s): Commerce / Commercial Services : Office or Office Building
Industry : Food and Beverage Manufacturing Facility
Current Function(s):
Architect: Bernard Barthel
Builder:
Context:

Additional Information

Object Number: 4664-0396
Designation File:
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File:
Website Link:
Data Source: City of Edmonton, Sustainable Development Department, 10250 - 101 Street NW, Edmonton, AB T5J 3P4 (POSSE Files:17266318-005 and 17276318-007)
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