Winnipeg Architecture Foundation

Places

Buildings

201 Portage Avenue

Address:201 Portage Avenue
Use:Commercial
Original Use:Commercial
Constructed:1990
Architects:Charles Bentall Architects
Ralph Schilling Architects

More Information

Completed in 1990 for 88 million dollars, this post-modernist office tower is the tallest office tower in Winnipeg. Standing 33-storeys high and occupying the north west corner of Portage and Main, 201 Portage is one of the most recognizable buildings of the Winnipeg skyline. The building was constructed on top of an existing 40,000 square feet telecommunications center. 201 Portage Avenue is constructed around a reinforced concrete core, with steel framing and cast on-site concrete decks. The dominant elevation has a curved glass curtain wall that extends from the third to the thirty-third floor. At the base of this curtain wall is a single band of granite-framed glazing. The curved glass curtain wall element is also featured on other sides of the building, but is not as pronounced. Formally, the building is a series of stepped masses that culminate at the top in the glass penthouse.

The interior of the building is finished with granite, marble and glass. In a post-construction interview, Charles Bentall Architects noted that because the indoor walkway system was such a key element of the building and ultimately the entrance point in which most people would enter the building, the escalator connecting the building to the system was placed in a prominent place.

The original plan for this project included a second tower connected at the podium level to the north-west of the current tower, located adjacent to the Winnipeg Electric Railways Chambers building. This site is presently used as a plaza and parking area.