Work begins on historic Barron Building conversion
March 15, 2023: Today, Strategic Group CEO Riaz Mamdani was joined by Mayor Jyoti Gondek and Member of Parliament George Chahal to officially launch repurposing construction on Calgary’s historic Barron Building. Opening in 2024, the Barron Building will be transformed from an empty, derelict heritage office tower into a modern, vibrant residential community. Originally built in 1951, The Barron Building was Calgary’s first skyscraper, and it heralded the city’s future as an economic powerhouse.
“The rebirth of this beautiful and historic art deco building has been a passion project of ours since we acquired the building 15 years ago,” said Mr. Mamdani. “Together with our partners at The City of Calgary, we are completing an incredible project that is good for our city’s heritage and good for the vibrancy of downtown Calgary while also reducing greenhouse gas emissions and construction waste.”
Strategic Group is the first to complete modern office-to-residential conversions in Alberta, and the company continues to share its repurposing expertise across Canada. The Barron Building project is the Strategic Group’s most ambitious project to date--employing the company’s experience in development, construction, and repurposing while maintaining the heritage designation of the building.
“Calgary City Council sees the incredible value of the rebirth of The Barron Building as homes for Calgarians and the addition of street-level retail that adds to the vitality of our downtown,” said Mayor Gondek. “By investing $8.5 million in this project, we are investing in the future of our city centre while honouring and maintaining an important part of our history. Our downtown revitalization strategy is working and remains critical to seeing assessed property values continue to rise."
“The Barron Building redevelopment project aligns with the federal government's objective to ensure that every Canadian has a home they can afford and that meets their needs by 2030,” said MP Chahal. “I am eager to work with Strategic Group and The City of Calgary to ensure that initiatives like these receive federal support.”
The company estimates that the repurposing will prevent 4,175 tons of greenhouse gases from entering our atmosphere. Strategic Group’s repurposing projects in Alberta have saved 17,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions. This is the equivalent of taking 3,700 cars off the road. By repurposing the Barron Building, Strategic Group expects to save more than 11,000 tons of demolition material from going to landfill. Combined, Strategic Group’s conversion projects have saved approximately 60,000 tons of material from landfill.
"This redevelopment is complicated and challenging," adds Mr. Mamdani. "For example, work is underway to create an underground parkade with the historical building in place. The experience, creativity, and ambition of our team makes developments like this possible."
The Barron Building will have 118 new modern residential rental suites and street-level retail are built within the building. The total square footage of the residential is 100,688 sq. ft. and the retail is 8,580 sq. ft. The project will be complete in 2024.
For artistic renderings of the project (which are subject to change), click here.