From One Room Schoolhouse to Bankview’s Community Hub

With renovations nearing their completion at the Bankview Hall, it seems timely to take a moment to reflect upon the history of the home of the Bankview Community Association.

The Bankview Hall at 2418 17th Street SW has taken many forms since the 1950s. The first building to house the Bankview Community Association, which was founded in December 1954, had an earlier life as a one room schoolhouse. Today that building’s original windows still look onto the main activity hall from the Board Room above.

Bankview Community Hall From Above

Photo credit: Google Maps

The activity hall was added in 1961 and by the late-1960s, the building’s current footprint was starting to take shape. But the unthinkable happened on January 24, 1975. That Friday the hall caught fire and was nearly consumed by the flames. The fire destroyed much of the building, and a long and protracted process of rebuilding followed.

Bankview community hall renovations Fall 2015

Photo credit: J. Henderson

While additional amenities like the tennis court, playground, and gazebo have been added over the decades, the last major construction at the Bankview Hall took place in the early 1980s. It was then that the now-jaunty front doors and accompanying vestibule were added.

Bankview community hall entrance

Photo credit: J. Henderson

Over the past few years volunteers on the Bankview Community Association Board of Directors have continued this history. In July 2015 the exterior of the hall was painted, and a community-painted mural of Bankview added to the southeast corner of the building. The interior washrooms have also been updated, new flooring installed, and storage cabinets built to increase usable floor space in the activity room.

Community hall mural 2015

Photo credit: J. Henderson

This summer new windows were added to the Board Room and Community Office bringing much welcomed natural light to these parts of the hall. The kitchen that has survived the pancake batter of seventeen Stampede Breakfasts has been completely gutted, with new cabinets and appliances currently being installed.

Kitchen renovations 2016

Photo credit: G. Simper

Thanks to those past and present for their time and labour, and for those of you reading, come be a part of the changes yet to come. Become a member of the Bankview Community Association (it’s free) today and to inquire about renting the Bankview Hall, just click here.

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