These photos were taken during the last few years that the building would have been operational – you can see in the top photo that at least one business had been boarded up and those weird corrugated metal pillar coverings had also been installed. I’m not too sure how long those have been on the building, but I’d love to see what it looked like without them.
The original drawings from 1929 showed the southern part of the building only having one set of doors for a larger space (originally a car dealership and repair shop), so I’m not sure if the extra set of doors you see were included when the building was constructed or whether the space was divided later on. Either way, this set up would actually allow for additional street level businesses in my hypothetical future. Perhaps a drop-in sewing/crafting space, similar to The Workroom in Toronto, would add to the mix with potential for cross-over programming with the Heritage Community Centre. Conversely, one person has suggested an indoor market or small grocery store would be a good use to include (there is even a loading dock at the back for deliveries). That would be a great way to reuse the space and would fill a need for both Heritage and Downtown residents.
While we’ve thought up some fun ideas for future re-development, one acquaintance of mine has noted that in the short-term the plywood should come down, the windows should be cleaned, and the Regina Historical Society should prepare window displays about the history of the Downtown and Heritage neighbourhoods. If nothing else it would add some interest to the current streetscape.
I still have not heard back from the owner and the last time I tried to call, their voice mail was full. I do have one message on there, so I guess I’ll just keep trying and hope that I get through. In the mean time I am still trying to collect photos and stories, so if you have photos of the Travellers’ Building while it was operational, have some memories about frequenting those businesses, or happen to know the owner to the building, please get in touch so we can keep putting the puzzle together.