Historic Sites of Manitoba: Casa Loma Building (644 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg)

Designed by Winnipeg architect John Hamilton Gordon Russell, this five-storey brick and stone building at the southeast corner of Portage Avenue and Sherbrook Street was built in 1909 by the construction firm of Carter Halls Aldinger. Intended as an apartment block with retail space on the first floor, the 91-foot wide by 112-foot deep building was an investment by Neil Thomas MacMillan and Robert Vollans.

The building was owned from 1915 to 1930 by the City Securities Company which was managed by Vollans as of the 1920s. A fire in the building on 14 April 1928 caused the deaths of five residents. Business occupants have included the grocer Alex Hendry, G. H. Wood and Company, Alfonso’s Colour Centre, Linn Signs, Shodor Industries, and The Rosery florist shop.

The building is a municipally-designated historic site.

A view from the top of Fire Hall No. 5, with the Manitoba Deaf and Dumb Institute at right and the Casa Loma Building in the background, behind the streetcar

A view from the top of Fire Hall No. 5, with the Manitoba Deaf and Dumb Institute at right and the Casa Loma Building in the background, behind the streetcar (circa 1910)
Source: Gordon Goldsborough, 2014-0330

Casa Loma Building

Casa Loma Building (April 2017)
Source: George Penner

Site Coordinates (lat/long): N49.88818, W97.15879
denoted by symbol on the map above

See also:

Memorable Manitobans: John Hamilton Gordon Russell (1863-1946)

Memorable Manitobans: Neil Thomas MacMillan (1877-1931)

Memorable Manitobans: Robert Vollans (1873-1937)

Manitoba Business: Carter-Halls-Aldinger

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Municipally Designated Historic Sites

Historic Sites of Manitoba: Casa Loma Building (Wasagaming, Riding Mountain National Park)


City of Winnipeg Building Permit 520/1909, City of Winnipeg Archives.

“Fire death list mounts to five,” Winnipeg Tribune, 16 April 1928, page 1.

Casa Loma Building, 644 Portage Avenue, Winnipeg Historical Buildings Committee, December 2003.

Preparation of this page was supported, in part, by the Gail Parvin Hammerquist Fund of the City of Winnipeg.

We thank Taras Zaporozan and George Penner for providing additional information used here.

This page was prepared by Gordon Goldsborough and Nathan Kramer.

Page revised: 4 December 2021

Historic Sites of Manitoba

This is a collection of historic sites in Manitoba compiled by the Manitoba Historical Society. The information is offered for historical interest only.

Browse lists of:
Museums/Archives | Buildings | Monuments | Cemeteries | Locations | Other

Inclusion in this collection does not confer special status or protection. Official heritage designation may only come from municipal, provincial, or federal governments. Some sites are on private property and permission to visit must be secured from the owner.

Site information is provided by the Manitoba Historical Society as a free public service only for non-commercial purposes.

Send corrections and additions to this page
to the MHS Webmaster at webmaster@mhs.mb.ca.

Search Tips | Suggest an Historic Site | FAQ

Help us keep history alive!