Walk 2: A Place Of Vision
(Walks Through Wascana Centre -WCA Pamphlet 2005)

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Wascana Centre Authority Pamphlet (2005)

This walk aims to give an appreciation of the work done by human hands to build a unique setting in the Queen City to develop the seat of government, to enlarge educational opportunities, to advance cultural arts,to improve recreational facilities and to conserve the environment.

1.75 kilometres 25 minutes

1)   These buildings are a part of the University of Regina. The first building as you walk east is Darke Hall. It opened in 1929 and for many years, was the major centre for the performing arts in Regina until the Saskatchewan Centre of the Arts was opened in 1970. Darke Hall still resonates to the sounds of musical and theatrical productions. The second building is known as the Gallery Building and houses the Senior's Education Centre. Beside this is the Conservatory home to the Conservatory of Music. The College Building is the third building and contains the offices of University Extension which offers Certificate Programs and Off-Campus Degree Credit Programs.

2) The final building along this portion of College Avenue was known as the old Regina Normal School, but has been refurbished and now houses the Canada/Saskatchewan Production Centre. When first established in 1911 by the Methodist Church of Canada, the Normal School was used for training Saskatchewan teachers.By 1929 a women's residence and a gymnasium were completed. The depression of the 1930's brought with it financial constraints and the church then transferred the college to the University of Saskatchewan Regina campus. It was used by the University of Regina Fine Arts Department until new facilities at the main campus led to closing the building. In the mid 1990's, the Government of Saskatchewan, the City of Regina and the Saskatchewan Film Industry went into partnership and redesigned the building so that it has 4 sound stages which have the capacity to film feature length movies, television sitcoms or any other needs of the media industry.

3) Continuing south along Broad Street you will pass by the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Building. The CBC is a complete production centre for both French and English television and radio. The building has been designed to incorporate advanced techniques in design and equipment for use in its nine radio and three television studios. You can also see that the CBC is connected to the Canada/Saskatchewan Production Centre whereby the two facilities have access to each other's amenities. The CBC building is of architectural interest because of its glassed-in foyer. It was designed to preserve a cone of vision to the Legislative Dome as one drives south on Broad Street.

4) To the south of the CBC building is the Culliton Centre. This building is the headquarters for the Canadian National Institute for the Blind, the Canadian Liver Foundation and Catholic Families First.

5) The concrete path southwest of the Culliton Centre leads to the Willow Island Overlook. This structure was completed in 1967. Its design is functional, with the lowest level being the boat dock for the ferry which provides public transportation to and from Willow Island. A pump house for the irrigation of the north shore is built into the second level. The third level is an observation deck. Stand in the middle of the top deck and listen to the echo when you speak.

6) Willow Island can be seen across the water from the overlook. The island was originally built during the 1930's and was expanded during the lake deepening project in 2004. Willow Island was originally used by the Regina Boat Club which was disbanded in 1962. The newly established Wascana Centre decided to make the island available to the public for group picnics. Barbecue sites, picnic tables, washrooms and sheltered areas were built and are available to the public. Group reservations can be made by contacting Wascana Centre Authority.

7) The early history of this man-made lake must be appreciated. In the 1880's Wascana Creek was dammed by the local settlers so the reservoir could be used to water livestock. In 1908 a bridge and dam were built on Albert Street to hold back the waters of Wascana Creek. A second bridge on Broad Street was constructed in the same year to enclose the area from Albert to Broad Street to form a water reservoir in front of the newly constructed Legislative Building. By the late 1920's the water level in the reservoir was so low that most water based recreational activities were abandoned. The depression of the 1930's left many people unemployed and prompted the government to design a relief program toprovide work for more than 2100 men. Using hand tools and horse-drawn wagons, these men dredged and widened Wascana Lake and built two islands, Willow and Spruce Islands. In 2004 Wascana Lake was once again deepenedand two more islands - Willow Island Pine and Discovery Islands - were formed from the excavated soil.

8) The walkway continues south along the lake The HMCS Queen Building across the road to the left was included within Wascana Centre when the Centre was formed in 1962. Although the buildingis on federal government land and not bound by provincial statute, arrangements have been made to allow Wascana Centre Authority to develop and maintain the landscaping around the building so as to unify it with the rest of the Centre. The flag pole was once the mast of a real ship.

9) South of the Queen Building is Wascana Place, the headquarters for Wascana Centre Authority. The building was opened April 1, 1982, marking twenty years of progress and development within Wascana Centre under the Authority. Maps and information on Wascana Centre and the city area vailable here as well as public exhibits that describe the history and future of Wascana Centre in more detail. A gift shop featuring Saskatchewan arts and handicrafts was open year round, but was shut down in March 2006. The upper levels provide office space, an observation deck, and the joe moran art gallery. Come in and visit us!

10) West from Wascana Place is Trafalgar Overlook and Pond, so named because of the view of Trafalgar Fountain across the lake to the west. The overlook site design received a citation for outstanding achievement from the Canadian Society of Landscape Architects in 1989.

11) On your right is the Wascana Racing Canoe Club storage facility. Built in 1996 and expanded in 2005, it replaces the temporary trailers and sheds that the club was using. The Wascana Racing Canoe Club holds numerous regattas on Wascana Lake that encompass different disciplines and all levels of athlete.

12) The Wascana Marina Building was officially opened May 15, 1981 to serve as a warm-up shelter in the winter and in January 1986 it was altered to serve as a year round restaurant facility. For the 2005 Canada Summer Games it was expanded to include larger storage facilities as well as year round washrooms/change rooms. The building was renamed the Canada Games Wascana Lake Centre. The Wascana marina was constructed for the 1975 Western Canada Summer Games. It provides a launching site for the many canoes and sailboats found on Wascana Lake during the summer months.

13) The Broad Street Bridge forms the western boundary to Wascana Waterfowl Park. In 2004 a bicycle path was constructed under the bridge allowing for an easier and safer continuation of the south shore trail. The lake area to the east of the bridge is left in a natural marsh state to provide a home for local and migrating waterfowl and small wildlife. A park naturalist ensures the health and safety of these birds and other wildlife.

Bridges,   Canada/Saskatchewan Production Centre,   Canadian Broadcasting Corporation Building,   Culliton Centre,   HMCS Queen Building,   joe moran art gallery,   Regina Normal School,   Trafalgar Fountain,   Trafalgar Pond,   University of Regina,   Wascana Place,   Wascana Racing Canoe Club,   Wascana Waterfowl Park,   Willow Island,