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The Exchange District

Vignettes / The Exchange District / King

Hydro Sub-station No.1

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City Light & Power Company, the first public utility in Western Canada, began operation in 1911. The utility had entered into competition with the Winnipeg Electric (Railway) Co. which operated the first water generated electrical system beginning in 1903.

From a generating station on the Winnipeg River at Pointe du Bois to a terminal station in Point Douglas, electricity flowed through this substation to businesses. The new rates brought about by this competition made electricity affordable to district manufacturers (primarily in the clothing trade) and dramatically affected their growth.


Machine Room



Year Built Heritage Status Date Material Floors/Square footage
1910-1911 Municipal, 1980, grade II Highly detailed façade with Romanesque arches and some classical motifs, brick and sandstone over steel and concrete frame. 2 and 3 storeys/37,917 total floor area

Original Use Present Use Address Architect
Generating station - part of city infrastucture and civic development. Office and Commercial Space 54 King Street First 1910-11 J.P. West Smith, Kerry & Chace, City of Winnipeg engineers, then 1 storey added (central section) 1913 by James Chisolm.





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