“Then & Now” columns appeared weekly in the Calgary Herald between 2002 and 2005. The following article appeared January 28, 2003.
• The Calgary YMCA was organized in 1902 to provide programs and support for the young men of the city. Although Senator James Alexander Lougheed laid the cornerstone on Sept. 21, 1907, the $90,000 building was not opened until 1909. Built on property donated by the Canadian Pacific Railway, this solid sandstone structure served as the Central Y until 1954, when it was vacated and taken over by the CPR.
Now: Fording Place
• The Y's first permanent home was demolished in 1964 to make way for construction of the Natural Resources Building. Opened in 1966, the CPR-owned tower provided office space for Marathon Realty, Canadian Pacific Oil and Gas Ltd. (became PanCanadian Petroleum in 1971) and the CPR law department. It was the first step in the redevelopment of 9th Avenue that ultimately included the construction of Palliser Square and the Husky Tower (now the Calgary Tower). The building now houses the head office of Canada's largest export-coal producer, Fording Inc.