Canadian Pacific Railway Station
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The Canadian Pacific Railway Station is a Heritage Railway station that was built in 1906 and expanded in 1911. It is highly valued as a preeminent building associated with the Western expansion of the transcontinental railway building program and the catalyst for the founding of the City of Medicine Hat.
The original route for the CPR proposed by civil engineers avoided Southern Alberta entirely due to the unfavorable farming region. This route was opposed by the CPR and a more southern route was chosen to help manage Canada’s southern border and limit American expansion north. Surveyors first came in 1883 to lay out the railway’s crossing point at the South Saskatchewan River. A camp was established for the route, which would eventually become the City of Medicine Hat. Medicine Hat‘s layout was highly organized with the railway forming the spine of the town and both commercial and residential blocks spreading out words north and south of the tracks. Once established, the railway brought settlers from eastern Canada, the United States and Europe to the prairies. Local businesses established in close proximity to the railway line, provided amenities to residents as well those traveling on from Medicine Hat. The region's environment coupled with the cities positioning in southern Alberta, vast natural gas deposits and extensive railway network resulted in it becoming a key production and distribution centre in southern Alberta. The City of Medicine Hat’s strong economic base and permanency is reflected in the railway station's substantial size.
Source: City of Medicine Hat