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Lanz Residence designated as Municipal Historic Resource

Lanz Residence.jpgLethbridge City Council on Tuesday voted unanimously to designate a new Municipal Historic Resource.

The two-storey Lanz Residence, located at 721 - 3 Street South, is a concrete block foursquare with a hipped roof and an open front porch with four composite Ionic-Corinthian concrete columns.

"The Lanz Residence has great heritage value and is significant for its association with Lethbridge's early residential development," said Ross Kilgour, Senior Community Planner. "From 1907 to the beginning of World War One, Lethbridge enjoyed a period of rapid economic and population growth. This 1909 house was built near the height of the economic boom, before the slowdown caused by World War One, local droughts and the recession in the early 1920s."

Prior to 1918, the foursquare house was one of the most popular residential building plans in Alberta. Foursquare homes are typically two storeys in height and feature a symmetrical façade that hints at the four-rooms-per-floor design within. The Lanz Residence is unusual in that instead of using wood or brick, which were common building materials in Lethbridge at that time, it was constructed from concrete blocks fashioned to look like stone. The choice of building material may have been influenced by the strong, dry winds and the prevalent use of timber at that time which made fire a very real threat in Lethbridge. The unusual building materials, as well as the offset open front porch with classical Ionic columns combine to make this residence a unique part of Lethbridge's built heritage.

The character-defining elements include: hipped roof; concrete block construction; cast stone lintels and sills; rusticated concrete block foundation; composite Ionic-Corinthian columns atop rusticated concrete block piers supporting the hipped roof on the front porch; brick chimney; and the pattern, style and construction of all original window and door openings.

Its first recorded tenant was insurance broker D. Ferguson. The house remained vacant for a few years in the mid-1910s, but was soon occupied by a William R. Pilling, manager of Southern Brokerage Ltd., who assumed ownership in 1917. Other early residents included Paul A. Schendel, a machinist, and Edwin S. Richardson, a fireman at the CPR.