Grand Forks Historic Buildings
The older buildings of Grand Forks remain as a testament to the age of optimism and to the pioneers who took the risks to make development possible.
Although the towns iconic hotels have succumbed to fire, the citizens of the area have shown their pride in this legacy in many ways. The City of Grand Forks took a bold step toward conserving its heritage in 1979-81 with the restoration of the old post office and its adaptive reuse as city hall with further restoration done due to a fire in September of 2013 which damaged the interior. The restoration of the courthouse, the formation of the Boundary Museum, the downtown revitalization and other projects has all contributed to the enhancement of our city.
Old Post Office (now City Hall): 429 Market Ave. The present City Hall building was designed by architects from the Department of Public Works in Ottawa. The picturesque way in which this building is sited adds to its dramatic effect and makes this an ideal gateway to the downtown area.
337 Market Ave. This building is an excellent example of boom town architecture. It is an end gabled store with a prominent false front. This type of false front commercial building was very common in early BC towns, and is usually associated with the first stage of civic development. The false front effect attempted to simulate the solidity and maturity of larger centres. The building is identified on the 1899 fire map as a furniture store and is probably the oldest commercial building in Grand Forks.
Selkirk College: 486 72nd Ave. This building was constructed in 1898 and was known as Columbia Brewery in 1899, later becoming an auto shop and finally Selkirk College. This early industrial enterprise is a reminder of Grand Forks’ boom town origins. It is interesting to note that in October of 1898, The Grand Forks Miner reported there were 10 hotels with saloons running at full blast.