Demolition looms for vintage service station (Eamons Thread)

Status of new or continuing risks to heritage sites

Moderator: newsposter

Postby newsposter » Fri Sep 07, 2012 8:55 am

The RFP is out there to move and store the Eamon's Camp building so that LRT-related construction can proceed. The expectation is that the building will be returned to the site and re-used. There will probably be a subsequent EOI or RFP seeking potential users of the building. ... 021B943B4&

Opportunity Description: The City of Calgary wishes to engage a qualified firm to move and store the historical Eamon’s Camp Building. After the building is moved and stored there is an option to replace the building near its original location.
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Postby newsposter » Wed Sep 12, 2012 8:22 am


Tuesday, September 11, 2012
Play a part in preserving Calgary’s history

The 1950s-era gas station building from the Eamon’s Bungalow Camp is being offered as a unique long-term leasing opportunity by The City of Calgary.

The City has issued a Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) to gauge public interest in utilizing the building in the area of the new LRT extension north Park & Ride lot. The RFPQ is aimed at finding an entrepreneur interested in restoring and operating a business in the building. Please visit (search for AB-2012-04648) to view and respond to the RFPQ. The RFPQ closes Oct. 10, 2012.

The building will be located in the Rocky Ridge Park & Ride lot next to the new Tuscany CTrain station, which will open for Transit service in the fall of 2014.

“The building is being moved off-site so that work on the Tuscany Station and the Park & Rides can proceed,” says Anne Cataford, Manger of LRT Projects. “Although the intent is to return the building to the site in a new location, a final use for the building is yet to be determined. The RFPQ is intended to gauge the level of interest from businesses or individuals in restoring and using the Eamon’s building as a business in the Rocky Ridge Park & Ride.”

Responses to the RFPQ will be evaluated against a set of criteria and the proposals that meet those criteria will be invited to reply to a Request for Proposal.

Visit for more information about the N.W. LRT project and the Eamon’s building. ... story.html


Eamon’s Building Long-term Leasing Opportunity – Request for Pre-Qualification (RFPQ) now open

September 11, 2012 07:39 AM Category: Calgary Transit & Commuting, History & Heritage, Planning & Building, Transportation

Do you want to play a part in preserving Calgary’s history? The City of Calgary is looking for someone to restore and use the Eamon’s 1950s-era gas station building as a business, which will be located in the north Park & Ride at the future northwest CTrain station.

Anyone interested in pursuing this unique long-term leasing opportunity should reply to the posted RFPQ by Oct. 10, 2012. Please visit for details on the RFPQ by searching for AB-2012-04648. Information about the NW LRT project and the Eamon’s building is available at

The building will be moved and stored. The intent is to return the building to the Rocky Ridge Park & Ride site but in a new location. The RFPQ is intended to gauge the level of interest from businesses or individuals in restoring and using the Eamon’s building as a business. Responses to the RFPQ will be evaluated against a set of criteria and the proposals that meet those criteria will be invited to reply to a Request for Proposal.

The new Tuscany CTrain station will open for transit service in the fall of 2014. The new CTrain extension past Crowfoot Station in northwest Calgary will service the communities of Tuscany, Rocky Ridge and Royal Oak.


From 1949-1966, entrepreneur Roy Eamon operated a "one-stop tourist centre" on the old Highway 1 west of Calgary. The distinctive style of the sign and the building are familiar to the many Calgarians who have travelled along what is now called Highway 1A. In its heyday, it included a drive-in restaurant, a service station and a bungalow camp-style motel. By the mid-1960s, the main highway was moved farther south and the Eamon’s operation closed.

Today, although the motel cabins are gone, the original building and the sign are still intact. The sign is being rehabilitated and incorporated into the Rocky Ridge Park & Ride’s pick-up and drop-off area. Until then, it will be moved and stored so that construction on the Park & Ride can proceed.

- 30- ... rss=238383
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Postby Val Jobson » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:15 pm

This story is ominous for Eamon's Camp:

...The city’s public invitation for entrepreneurs to express interest in the iconic building along Crowchild Trail N.W. closed on Wednesday, with no bidders... ... story.html
Val Jobson
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Postby LauraGrace » Tue Nov 13, 2012 9:17 am

Eamon’s Camp rescue could be $1.4M public toilet

By Richard Cuthbertson, Calgary Herald, November 12, 2012

Despite a failed search to find a business willing to take over Eamon’s Camp, the city is refusing to flush hopes that the heritage landmark on Crowchild Trail can be saved.

Officials are considering alternatives, including a $1.4-million restoration of the iconic, but dilapidated, former gas station to turn it into an automatic public toilet enclosure.

It’s just one of the possibilities being contemplated, according to a city report in which officials predict it will cost between $1.2 million and $1.5 million if council wants to fund the renovation of the building.

Administrators are asking for more time, and need until May 2013 to sort out what comes next after an attempt to generate private-sector interest in the building didn’t work.

Ald. Dale Hodges doubts any additional money will be put in until a future use for the Eamon’s building can be determined.

“We’ll probably end up moving it to another site, where it might be useful to a different owner,” Hodges said.

The report on the situation will be discussed Wednesday at the city’s transportation committee meeting.

The city had originally intended to save the Eamon’s Camp sign but tear down the adjacent garage, to make way for the future Rocky Ridge LRT park and ride lot.

City council, however, intervened and asked officials to find a new use for the building.

Local heritage advocates consider Eamon’s to be the finest example of an Art Moderne gas station left in Canada.

The problem is that despite advertising the site, the city has found no one willing to take it over, restore the building and set up shop.

The intention had been to remove the Eamon’s building temporarily, because it sits on a lower grade than the future park and ride, and then return it to the site.

The building could be left in storage until somebody wants it, although finding a buyer for the age-worn structure will be difficult and the heritage value won’t be retained.

Administrators are instead suggesting the city pay for its restoration. One option is for it to hold a public toilet, however part of the building would remain vacant and the necessary infrastructure would be difficult to accommodate in a parking lot.

Another choice is to spend $1.5 million to restore the building, and then wait for someone lease it. That, too, has a downside because it is difficult to renovate without knowing what its final use will be.

For $1.2 million, the city can move the building to another property and then restore it.

Ald. Shane Keating said he’s not keen on those pricey options, and suggested it’s best to save the sign and construct a replica of the Eamon’s building at much lower cost.

“It’s fabulous to be able to save and restore all of these buildings,” he said. “But if it’s not feasible, then we can’t do it. The Eamon’s building was a landmark for decades, without question. But is it viable today?”

Eamon’s Camp is located on the old Highway 1, and is thought to be the first drive-in restaurant in Calgary when it was opened by Roy Eamon in 1949.

It soon became a Texaco station. The Calgary Heritage Authority says it is one of the few remaining examples in the city of corporate architecture from the 1950s.

Despite the tepid response from the private sector, supporters of Eamon’s are still convinced the best option is to get a small-business owner in there.

But Calgary Heritage Authority chairman Scott Jolliffe said he’s worried council will balk at the cost if the city has to foot the restoration bill.

“It’s certainly a concern,” he said. “These kinds of numbers make it easy to say ‘No,’ because all we’re looking at is the expense side.

“We’re not looking at the result, which would be a facility that would generate revenue over the long term.”

Read more: ... z2C7Vh2LIZ
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Postby newsposter » Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:19 pm

And another article from the Calgary Sun (Herald article above) ... -bathroom#

Calgary aldermen want to flush plans to turn aging Eamon's Camp gas station into $1.4 million bathroom

By Dave Dormer ,Calgary Sun
First posted: Monday, November 12, 2012 05:46 PM MST | Updated: Monday, November 12, 2012 06:02 PM MST

Two Calgary aldermen want to flush a city administration plan that suggests turning the historic Eamon’s Camp building into a LRT loo.

One of several options in a report coming before the city’s transportation committee Wednesday calls for converting the shuttered northwest gas station into an Park and Ride bathroom, which would cost nearly $1 million more than already allocated to the facility.

In May, city council voted to spend $500,000 to move the historic building on Crowchild Tr. N.W. — a 1950s service station designed with a signature art deco sign — to a storage facility while officials figured out what to do with it.

Now committee members are facing a suite of options to keep it — ranging between $700,000 to $1 million — but it’s a tough sell for some.

“From my point of view, they’re not getting (any additional money), but that doesn’t mean other (committee members) won’t give it to them,” said Ald. Shane Keating.

“It’s a great old building, but that’s what it is, a great old building.”

In September, the city issued a request for prequalification, looking for someone in the private sector to buy and renovate the building — however, there were no takers.

Among the three options recommended are $900,000 to see the building renovated and returned to the Park and Ride site to be used as an automatic public toilet; the second, costing $1 million, calls for the building to be renovated and returned to market to be leased; and the third, costing $700,000, would be to renovate it and move it to another, city-owned location.

The report also includes options to permanently move the building in hopes of selling it at a cost of $280,000 or disposing of it altogether, which would cost between $20,000 and $50,000.

That the private sector balked when the facility was made available is reason enough not to invest more money, said Ald. Gord Lowe.

“The difficulty I have with the whole thing is the building itself was not seen to be of historical significance, it didn’t get designated,” he said.

“The sign didn’t get designated either, but it will be incorporated into the LRT station and that, to me, makes good sense — it gives a nod to Eamon’s Camp and preserves a bit of the heritage.

“If it was a good deal, somebody would have taken it ... but they didn’t, so it isn’t.”

Better planning was needed on the project from the outset, said Canadian Taxpayers Federation Alberta director Derek Fildebrandt.

“It’s going to stink, either way they do it now,” he said.

“No one wants to be responsible for demolishing a city landmark, especially after we’ve already shovelled a ton of money into keeping this thing in one piece — to demolish it now would be farcical.

“It’s a case of the city not having their ducks in a row.”

On Twitter: @SUNDaveDormer


• $1.4 million: Renovate and return the building and then return to market for lease of the building

• $1.5 million: City provides funding to renovate the building and then return it to the market for lease

• $1.2 million: Review other city-owned locations where the building could be relocated and renovated

* All above options include $500,000 already spend to relocated the building to a storage facility

• $280,000: Permanently remove building from the site to sell to a private buyer

• $20,000 to $50,000: Dispose of the building as originally planned in 2008
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Postby newsposter » Tue Nov 13, 2012 12:22 pm

Here is the Eamon's item going to a Council committee on Wednesday, November 14. See item 3.5 on the agenda at the link below. News articles above. ... ype=AGENDA
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Eamon's Camp gets a 120 day stay

Postby cjane » Thu Nov 15, 2012 10:48 am

Yesterday Calgary's Transportation & Transit Committee agreed to keep the heritage landmark up for grabs for the next 120 days.

Read more:
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Postby newsposter » Mon Nov 19, 2012 5:14 pm

The minutes and video from Council Committee meet that discussed Eamon's have been posted: ... pe=MINUTES

Also, a round-up of some of the news stories:

November 14 CBC ... ml?cmp=rss

November 15 Herald ... story.html

November 15 Metro ... ons-owner/
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Postby newsposter » Tue Dec 04, 2012 2:08 pm

City begins putting Eamon’s Camp building into storage for $280,000
By Jason Markusoff, Calgary Herald November 30, 2012
Read more: ... z2E7SYz8w0

Related letter to the editor:
Odd priorities
By Anita Koles McNeill, Calgary Herald December 4, 2012 ... story.html

:arrow: People occasionally contact CHI inquiring about the use of the building. You should contact the City of Calgary heritage planners who can better field your interest. See the contact information at the bottom of the page linked here:
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Postby GHeritage » Sat Mar 02, 2013 5:52 pm

















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Postby newsposter » Mon Mar 11, 2013 8:57 am

It's been posted on the City website with no fanfare, but the City is fishing expressions of interest for potential users for Eamon's. The posting includes some new information about potential costs and leasing conditions. It will be some time before the building is replaced on site, so to see the opportunity now will probably take some vision... ... ities.aspx

Also, an interim report of some sort is expected at the Transportation and Transit committee meeting of Council on March 20. That is a public meeting. The agenda item will be posted a few days prior.
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Postby newsposter » Thu Mar 14, 2013 3:15 pm

Plans for the Tuscany LRT station went to Calgary Planning Commission "for information" (as the applicant is an arm of the City - Transportation Dept. - and not subject to CPC decisions) on March 14, 2013. It notes the planned placement of the Eamon's sign, but that the issue of the Eamon's gas station and replacement on site is still not resolved. ... 2-0011.pdf
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Postby newsposter » Mon Mar 18, 2013 12:18 pm

Supplementary report on Eamon's Camp going to Council's Transportation and Transit Committee on March 20: ... ype=AGENDA
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Postby newsposter » Mon Jun 17, 2013 9:25 am

Eamon's Camp going to Council's Transportation and Transit committee on Wednesday. Several news stories and link to agenda below:

Agenda: ... ype=AGENDA

Historic society enlisted in bid to raise funds to preserve Eamon's Camp
By Sherri Zickefoose, Calgary Herald June 17, 2013 7:39 AM
Read more: ... z2WUT6N6aX

Calgary officials mull rescue plan for historic Eamon's Camp
By Jenna McMurray, Calgary Sun June 17 (online June 16) ... amons-camp

Calgary vote could decide fate of Eamon’s building
Metro, June 17 ... -building/
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Re: Eamon's Camp relocation and re-use news

Postby Fragile » Wed Jun 19, 2013 4:16 pm

The future of Eamon's Camp may be looking brighter as interested parties are starting to come forward. See the Calgary Herald article for more details about today's discussion at committee:
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