Something amazing happened today when I was downtown. I saw signs of life in one of the most uninviting and forsaken courtyards in all of downtown.
As I was waiting for the light to change, I noticed what I think must be a new sign on a street corner. Maybe I was paying attention. Maybe I was not. Either way it doesn’t matter.
Dating back to the late-1970s/early 1980s this was the location of what was to be the tallest building (at 61 stories) in Calgary back in the day. When the economy came to a screeching halt in 1980/81, this building was put on ice for what was to be a couple years. It appears to be more like 30 years instead. The companion building First Canadian Centre was completed in 1982 and actually was the tallest building for only what I assume was a very brief period of time. It was surpassed by the Petro-Canada Centre, or Red Square as it was derisively known as in the fall-out period of the National Energy Project (or the NEP) which any long-time resident active in the oil patch will know about.
Looks like things are happening there. Now we will have three tall buildings in a row. All under construction at the same time. Each on a separate block. Each making designs to be the tallest building in the city. Each on the same side of the street. Each on subsequent blocks – starting from Centre Street going west, Telus Sky, Brookfield Place and then this.
The nightmares of traffic congestion in about a year should be horrendous.