The building at 667 Ellice Avenue has been part of the community for over 50 years and is getting quite the re-do.
It was built in the early 50s when the YMCA decided to expand programming into the community, rather than have everything at one central location. A number of 'Community Ys' were established during this time including St. James, St. Vital and North Winnipeg.
The Ellice facility was built with an eye to expansion - two more floors could be added and an elevator shaft was roughed in. Things didn't turn out for the West End Y, though. By 1968 it was closed.
ca. Jan 2011
The space was subdivided into seperate office and retail space and housed many tenants over the years. Examples: The Liberal Party (68-69); the Manitoba Sports Federation and the Manitoba Film Classification Board. In 1981 the building was the Christmas Cheer Board headquarters.
In the 1990s it held mostly community offices, including a YMCA daycare program on upper floor. Controversy erupted in 1997 when a massage parlour was allowed to rent the main floor section. After a brief uproar the parlour moved out.
Last year the building went up for sale for $550,000.
Proposed design (source)
The new owner is the Native Women’s Transition Centre, who will relocate their offices from Aikins Street.
The upper floors will be Kihiw Iskewock (Eagle Woman's) Lodge, a "long term transitional facility for Aboriginal women who have experienced incarceration and/or have been in conflict with the justice system". It is a partnership between the Transition Centre, C.L.O.U.T and the Elizabeth Fry Society. There will be 15 rooms, 35 beds, and clients and their children will be able to stay for up to three years while they integrate back into the community.
It is expected to open by summer 2011
Interior photos of the renos see Three Way Builders.
For more on Kihiw Iskewock
The building reopened in Summer 2011