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Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1


Other Names:
Fire Hall #1
Fire Hall No. 1
No. 1 Fire Hall
Municipal Public Building

Statement of Significance

Description of Historic Place
Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 is a three-storey brick building with arched, recessed windows, a prominent bell tower, and three vehicle bay openings. The bricks on the ground floor are painted red. It is situated on a subdivided block in Lethbridge's historic downtown.

Heritage Value
The heritage value of Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 lies in its status as the oldest and one of the finest remaining brick fire halls in Alberta. It also possesses value for its historic role as a centre of municipal governance and administration.

Designed in the Italianate style, Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 is the most architecturally impressive of all early fire halls in the province. Its size and ornate design symbolize the community's economic aspirations and the new demand for municipal services during the rapid commercial and residential development that took place at the turn of the twentieth century.

Constructed in 1908-09 to replace a smaller brick structure on the same location, Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 housed all city offices, council chambers, and both the police and fire departments. Known as the Municipal Public Building, it served in this multi-use capacity until 1917, when the city offices and police department relocated. The building continued to serve as No. 1 Fire Hall until 1974.

Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch (File: Des. 201)

Character-Defining Elements
The character-defining elements of the exterior of Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 include:
- rectangular shape, form and massing;
- cupola bell tower with round-arched openings and pressed tin support columns;
- wide arched recessed openings and wood doors on the north facade;
- "FIRE HALL No 1" sign;
- doors into vehicle bays and historic hardware;
- brick cornice;
- round-headed windows in a rhythmic pattern;
- decorative oculus window above main entrance door;
- double-hung wooden sash windows;
- main level painted bricks;
- locally manufactured bricks above the main level.

Original remaining elements and fittings of the interior of Lethbridge Fire Hall No. 1 such as:
- the remaining original material of the jail cells in the basement;
- brick walls and arches.


Street Address: 402 - 2 Avenue South
Community: Lethbridge
Boundaries: Subdivision A, Plan Lethbridge 1668D
Contributing Resources: Buildings: 1

ATS Legal Description:
Mer Rge Twp Sec LSD
13 (ptn.)

PBL Legal Description (Cadastral Reference):
Plan Block Lot Parcel
1668 D

Subdivision A

Latitude Longitude CDT Datum Type
49.696483 -112.841634 Secondary Source NAD83

UTM Reference:
Northing Easting Zone CDT Datum Type
5506512 367190 Digital Maps NAD 83


Recognition Authority: Province of Alberta
Designation Status: Provincial Historic Resource
Date of Designation: 1979/07/05

Historical Information

Built: 1908 to 1909
Period of Significance: 1909 to 1974
Theme(s): Expressing Intellectual and Cultural Life : Architecture and Design
Governing Canada : Government and Institutions
Historic Function(s): Government : Fire Station
Government : Police Station
Government : Town or City Hall
Current Function(s): Commerce / Commercial Services : Office or Office Building

The heritage significance lies in its impressive fire hall architecture. It is also a prominent and well-known landmark in the Lethbridge city centre. The Fire Hall is probably the oldest brick fire hall still standing in the province at Alberta. The relatively large size of this structure exemplifies the hopes and the ambitions of the founders of Lethbridge.

Additional Information

Object Number: 4665-0186
Designation File: DES 0201
Related Listing(s):
Heritage Survey File: HS 32228
Website Link:
Data Source: Alberta Culture and Community Spirit, Historic Resources Management Branch, Old St. Stephen's College, 8820 - 112 Street, Edmonton, AB T6G 2P8 (File: Des. 201)
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