Jane’s Walk: Regina’s Centre Square

Previously known as the Transition Area, Centre Square is located between College Avenue and Victoria Avenue and Albert and Broad Streets just south of downtown. The current name implies its central location while the former title described the shift from single-family homes to commercial and high-density residential properties.

Residences were constructed in the area after 1903. College Avenue – then 16th Avenue – was Regina’s southern city limit. In the early 1900s, many important citizens lived in this distinguished neighbourhood. The 1912 tornado torn through this area traveling south to north. Scores of homes were damaged or demolished, particularly on Smith and Lorne Streets.

Apartments and retail stores were constructed in the late 1920s. In the 1960s further commercial development followed. Today many properties have been re-purposed as law offices, restaurants, day spas, architecture firms, and hair studios.

Gordon Residence

This house was built for Percival Gordon, a lawyer, in 1925. He resided here until his death in 1975. Gordon represented doctors appealing the new medicare legislation in 1962. Thankfully he did not win the case. The dwelling was designed by Charles Coxall and includes Georgian and Colonial Revival architecture. It features a fanlight, dormers, modillions, and quarter-round windows.

Thomson Residence

Dr. William Thomson lived at this address after its construction in 1926. Dr. Thomson was very active in the community. He served on city council, assisted in the establishment of the General Hospital, and was a member of the Regina Public School Board. This house was also designed by Charles Coxall. The style is Regency and Georgian. A stone architrave and flat roof dormers are present.

Logan/Turgeon Residence

This residence was built in 1906/1907 for Walter Logan, manager of Northern Bank. Between 1910 and 1919, William Ferdinand-Alphonse Turgeon lived here. He served as Saskatchewan’s attorney general from 1907 to 1921. He later became Chief Justice of Saskatchewan’s Court of Appeal (1938-1941). In 1981 the house was purchased by the Canadian Hostelling Association saving it from demolition. It was moved from Angus Street to this site and opened as a hostel in May 1983. Its style is Georgian Revival and features a two-storey front porch and a balcony over its south porch.

Newlands Residence

Henry Newlands lived in this 1906 house from 1909 to 1910. He was lieutenant-governor of the province from 1921 until 1930. In 1933 the property was renovated into suites. From 1946 to 1975 it was known as Windsor Court. It has rusticated concrete blocks, fish-scale siding, and wood shingles. It was removed from the Regina Heritage Holding Bylaw List in 1994. I believe this was due to alterations from its original design – rooflines and windows were changed over the years.

Parsons Residence

Wellington Parsons resided in this house from its construction in 1910 until 1919. He was the secretary-treasurer of the Parsons Construction and Engineering Company.

Clifton Court Apartments

This property was originally built for Dr. Gregor Smith in 1912. In 1923, he sold it to Fred Barber, who ran a men’s clothing store. Its architectural style is Tudor-Revival. It has wood awnings and half-timbering and stucco on the third storey.

Regina’s self-guided walking tours are listed here.

One thought on “Jane’s Walk: Regina’s Centre Square

  1. I’ve only been to Regina once. I flew in for three days of work meetings. The first night I went for a walk from the hotel to see the city centre just like I’ve done at all cities that I’ve visited. I was approached by a group of youth and circled by them. They stared at me and I at them. My reaction was probably not what they expected as they moved and allowed me to continue. That’s the closest that I’ve ever been to getting mugged. Needless to say my first impression of Regina was not great. Reading your blog post has made me wonder if I should give Regina a second chance and visit some of the historic areas. I’m retired now so there are no more meetings to attend but someday perhaps, when passing through, I will stop in and have a closer look at Regina’s historic areas (although I’ll stay out of town core).

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