When I think of Mount Pleasant as a community, I see it as a Calgarian time capsule. There are traces of each and every boom and bust, defined sub communities that where developed to meet the needs of that decades buyers.
North of 16th avenue you will find many 90-105 year old homes that are no bigger than 900 square feet. They where populated by the working class during Calgary’s expansion to the North side of the Bow River with the construction of the Lions Gate bridge in 1916. Some of these homes are weathered and begging for a bulldozer and other, the major I would say have other been revitalized already that said bulldozer and replaced with infills; or have been upgraded to charming little homes. Resent zoning changes on the southside of 17th ave has led to the development of the first lowrise condo called 10, on the communities western border, a stones throw from SAIT.
Moving North Towards 20th avenue the houses seemingly start to grow in size and 50×120 foot lots become the norm. These larger homes are unique from each other and seem to feature there own period in time. You see Calgary grew slowly between 1920-1940, during this period only 2 blocks of Mount Pleasant was developed. Resulting in sometimes upwards of a decade of time between neighbours. There is a wonderful mixture of Architecture that prominently features Craftmen Style Bungalows with exposed gables, prominent square porch supports and an evolving layouts that were adjusting to central heating. With 1 and half story homes with verandas and steeply pitched prairie roofs. 18th and 19th avenue within Mount pleasant are two of my personal favorite walks in the city. This was also the location that the town shots of Brokeback Mountain were filmed.
Calgary’s population started to boom in 1940’s with its population growing from 88904 in 1941 to 129060 ten years later. Within this time Mount pleasant filled out the remaining gaps in 19th avenue and exploded to its north boundary in on 31st avenue n 1950. The majority of the original homes still standing where built between 1945-1950 fueled by the return of soldiers from World War II and urbanization. The typical home built in Mount Pleasant during this era was a 2 or 3 bedroom bungalow with a protruding mud room/foyer in the middle of the home separating the common areas and the bedrooms. These homes have been the target of developers during Calgary’s 3 latest oil booms resulting in infills from the each of those periods.
There is one last significant trend in Mount Pleasant building pattern. As you move North and West there is a significant increase in the number of million dollar plus homes that take advantage of Confederation Park. A 400 acres biking, walking and relaxing oasis within Calgary’s North Central.
Mount Pleasant Favorites
Red Velvet Cafe- Unbelievable food and coffee made fresh everyday from this little cafe. I would definitely drop by for a bowl of soup and wrap for lunch, or a Chunky Monkey Muffin and a coffee in the morning. (No Website yet, there domain is still available I shouldn’t buy it right? Too late)
The 4th spot-Mount pleasant most popular dinner spot. Daily specials are worth checking into, personally I would go on Thursdays for their Burger and Pint night and grab a Juicy Lucy and a Last Best IPA. Additionally some of the best wings in town, featuring twists on popular favours. So good that they only go on special once a week and for twice the amount of the average wing night. http://www.4thspot.com/
Mount Pleasant Pool- It’s a outdoor pool and has a diving board, enough said.
Community Centre and Mount Pleasant Arts Centre- Offer daily programming to keep fit and socially engaged at their annual community mixers (they had over 200 people go). The arts centre gives anyone the opportunity to develop your pottery skill next to many talent ACAD students getting in their studio time.
Mount Pleasant diverse housing options and price points attracts all kinds of people and amenities. Looking forward there is a plan to develop 4th street NW between 22nd and 29th with more multi housing and mixed commercial. Hopefully to develop the nightlife and appeal of a Marda Loop.