mg-202-28 (Keith family fonds) [1913]
mg-202-28 (Keith family fonds) [1913]

On a hill looking west over downtown Red Deer stands the Michener Administration Building. It has remained a familiar sight on the city skyline for ninety years; and one of the few buildings left from the early period of the city's development. Like many a nonagenarian, the building has experienced many changes since it was built in 1913.

The building was designed for the new Alberta Ladies' College of Red Deer. As befitted the grandiose plans of the college's board of governors, the finest residential college building of its size in Western Canada was erected. The massive four-storey brick building contained modern, well-decorated dormitories, reception parlors and spacious classrooms. The Alberta Ladies' College was, however, short-lived. Plagued by mounting debts the college's board sold the its building in 1916 to the provincial government. The college building was converted into a psychiatric hospital for shell-shocked soldiers.

In 1923, the building was put to new uses. It became the Provincial Training School, later renamed Alberta School Hospital, which cared for the developmentally disabled. The hospital grew in size and the old college building was converted into administrative offices. The hospital, a major employer in Red Deer, was renamed in 1977 in honor of the Rt. Hon. Roland Michener, a former resident of the city. It operates today as Michener Services.


  

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