Proposed Civic Centre Plan – 1952

April 4, 2014

From the Windsor Daily Star – December 29, 1952:

    Board of Control recently took the initial step in what could be one of the greatest civic projects Windsor has ever seen. The board moved to expropriate downtown riverfront land for Civic Centre development and the Civic Auditorium, proposed by the Centennial Birthday Festival committee, may be one of the first buildings to go into the site. The change will bring about the greatest face-lifting this city has ever seen and would give the city a heart and a wonderful show window. This aerial photo shows the area concerned. Surrounded by the solid line is the land the Board of Control proposes to expropriate for the purpose. The broken line surrounds the area which could be used for the construction of a new Canadian National Railways station.

    Back in 1945, Dr. E. G. Faludi, a town planning consultant retained by the city, outlined a plan for riverfront development in the downtown area. The river is the heritage of Windsor people. At that time, Dr. Faludi said the city should save it from commercial interests, and give its splendor and the enjoyment back to the people. The Board of Control proposes to follow this idea, but their action must yet be given the approval of city council. The issue will be one of the most important in years and the new council will be faced with it. This drawing shows the Faludi plan for a park, city hall building, county court house and a new C.N.R. station. The land, at the foot of Ouellette, is built out to the harbor line, to give more park area.

Have a good weekend everyone, see you back here Monday.

7 Responses to Proposed Civic Centre Plan – 1952

  1. freeman on April 4, 2014 at 10:30 am

    For all of Windsor’s faults and mistakes over the years this one is real success story, they didn’t end up putting city hall on the river but they did turn that industrial/commercial riverfront into parks and public areas that are one of the best features of this city.

  2. John on April 4, 2014 at 9:12 pm

    Giving Windsor an attaboy (even when well deserved) is very out of vogue in some circles, but you are absolutely right, freeman.

  3. Dave on April 5, 2014 at 1:02 am

    freeman and John, I completely agree. This is an “unbuilt Windsor” story for which a collection of our past civic leaders deserve kudos. We have a great City and the riverfront is a tremendous asset.

  4. DT on April 5, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    The river is the heritage of Windsor people

  5. Doug Shirk (douglasm) on April 8, 2014 at 7:16 pm

    I understand that times have changed, but in a way I miss a “working” waterfront on both sides of the river. I’m including Detroit from Cobo Hall up river in this. I know lawns and parks are pretty, but there’s an industrial beauty that’s lacking in both cities. In a way it’s like they’ve turned their backs on their heritage.

  6. JB on April 8, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    I can’t see how this would be a good plan. Having all that activity along the riverfront would make Riverside Dr even busier than it is now, and no room for expansion. I’m glad the council did not approve this plan.

  7. DT on April 9, 2014 at 5:40 pm

    Doug, that’s why I laughed when I read that line.

    Apparently our heritage is a bunch of junk called art and a lot of grass.

    And a phallic bush.

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