Metropolitan Building – West Hastings Street

Metropolitan Building 1934

In April 1910 the Metropolitan Building Co., Ltd were listed as owners, architects and the builder on the Building Permit of a $300,000 10 storey steel building at 833 Hastings Street. J W Weart was manager and solicitor for the Metropolitan Building Company, and the company did indeed handle the development of their premises – by the time all the sub-contracts had been let the cost had climbed to $325,000. (The Contract Journal in April 1910 listed the various contractors – the elevators were supplied by A & P Steven of Glasgow. For some reason the publication accidentally transferred the building to Ottawa). By August the steel frame was reported to be well under way, and the architect was identified – John S Helyer and Son. This was something of a minor miracle, as there are websites that say John Helyer fell to his death on the stairs of his already complete Dominion Trust Building. It was all finished by 1912 and our picture shows the building in 1934, after the Merchants Exchange Building has been built in the 1920s to the east.

The Metropolitan Building Co were also sometimes the Terminal City Club – the club started life as the Metropolitan Club, and the name was switched around 1898. It should therefore come as no surprise that today, the Terminal City Club sits on the site of the Metropolitan Building. Completed in 1998, the 30 storey tower has one of the most complex mixes of uses, from condos to a hotel, retail, office space, and the club itself which includes three restaurants for the members.

Picture source City of Vancouver Archives Bu N440

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