Swift Residence - Penticton, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 49° 30.101 W 119° 36.032
11U E 311717 N 5486478
One of several residences built for railway executives, the Swift Residence exemplified, as did others, the importance of the Kettle Valley Railway to the City of Penticton.
Waymark Code: WM14YRJ
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 09/13/2021
Published By:Groundspeak Premium Member Weathervane
Views: 0

PIC Were it not for glacial action in the past, there would not be a Penticton. The city occupies the entirety of a deposit of glacial till which separates Okanagan Lake from Skaha Lake. As a result Penticton has lakes and beaches at each of its north and south ends.

In the 1930s the north (Okanagan Lake) shore became the most desirable building site in the city for its lake shore location. So, during the '30s some of the city's most prestigious homes were built along Lakeshore Drive, facing the lake and the view well up the lake toward Kelowna.

Built in 1921, a decade prior to many of the fashionable homes that line Lakeshore Drive, the Swift Residence stands immediately west of the first and most notable of the prestigious residences on the street, the Warren House, which was built for the president of the Kettle Valley Railway.

The juxtaposition of the two was, in all likelihood, no coincidence, as the original owner was A. A. Swift, clerk for the Kettle Valley Railway (KVR), recently elected to Penticton Council. In time, other KVR executives would build along Lakeshore Drive as well. It was the architectural firm of Swan and Augustine which designed the home, a firm responsible for the design of all KVR buildings, including the Penticton KVR Depot, which still stands.
Swift Residence
Description of Historic Place:
The Swift Residence is a cross-gabled one and one-half storey wood frame bungalow located on Lakeshore Drive in Penticton, British Columbia. Built in 1921 during the post WWI building boom in Penticton, the residence is distinctive for its bungalow form with low pitched roofs and wide overhanging eaves, stucco cladding, and restrained Craftsman architectural detailing, including exposed timbers in the gable ends, gabled dormer, multi-light windows, and decorative knee braces.

Heritage Value:
The Swift Residence exemplifies the economic optimism prevalent in Penticton in the early 1920s, a period of economic and population growth. The Swift house, constructed for $6000 in the prestigious Lakeshore Drive area, was an expensive and visible symbol of wealth and an expression of social status. Its owner, A. A. Swift, was clerk for the Kettle Valley Railway Company, and had just been elected to Penticton Council. He chose to build his new house on a street that was a much sought-after location during the 1930s, and where other KVR executives resided, including the President of the Company, J. J. Warren.

Built in 1921, the Swift Residence is also valued for its cross-gabled bungalow form and restrained Craftsman detailing. Typical craftsman features include the low-pitched roofs, gabled entry porch with square columns, stucco finish with half-timbering in the gable ends, and decorative knee braces.

The Swift Residence is also valued for its association with the architectural firm of Swan and Augustine. Swan was responsible for all the KVR's architectural work, including the Lakeshore Station in Penticton. Swan and Augustine won the competition for the local Soldiers' Housing Scheme in 1920 and designed the Maternity Hospital in 1920-21.

Character-Defining Elements:
Key elements that define the heritage character of this site include:
  • location on Lakeshore Drive in Penticton
  • bungalow form as expressed by its one and one-half storey height with cross-gabled roof and gabled entry porch
  • Craftsman details including wide overhanging bargeboards, half-timbering, and decorative knee braces
  • stucco cladding

  • From Historic Places Canada
Official Heritage Registry: [Web Link]

440 Lakeshore Drive West
Penticton, BC
V2A 1B8

Heritage Registry Page Number: Not listed

Visit Instructions:
To log a visit to a Waymark in this category at least one photo of the property, taken by the visitor, must be included with the visit, as well any comments they have concerning either their visit or the site itself. Suggested inclusions are: what you like about the site, its history, any deviations from the description in the heritage listing noted by the visitor, and the overall state of repair of the site.
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