Greer Block - Penticton, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member T0SHEA
N 49° 29.812 W 119° 35.485
11U E 312360 N 5485920
Quick Description: The Greer Block is one of the few remaining buildings of rusticated concrete blocks remaining in Penticton. With corner pilasters topped by ball finials, the building is an example of Edwardian Classical Revival architecture.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 11/8/2021 10:35:50 AM
Waymark Code: WM158H9
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member bluesnote
Views: 0

Long Description:
PIC During Penticton's commercial building boom of 1911-1912 Front Street became the de facto business hub of the downtown core, with several buildings from that era remaining along the street. By the opening of the 1920s Main Street, with several blocks of available building lots, beckoned. Soon, the business district migrated south along Main Street, with essentially no further business construction taking place along Front Street until much later.

One of the earliest commercial buildings to spring up south of the original waterfront business district was the Greer Block, also one of the earliest rusticated concrete block buildings to appear in Penticton. According to the date stone centered in the façade and just below the parapet, construction of the building was begun in 1921. Built by Charles Greer, an ambitious man of many talents and interests, the Greer Block has been home to a long series of commercial ventures, from a grocery store to a dance studio.

When built, and for many years thereafter, the upper floor held a hall which was used as a Masonic Hall for a time, a dance hall and later a dance studio. Today it has been converted to apartments. The ground floor is today home to The Cellar Wine Bar & Kitchen, a fine dining establishment with a Mediterranean ambience.

Greer Block
Description of Historic Place:
The Greer Block is a two-storey, cement-block commercial building on the west side of Main Street in Penticton, British Columbia. It has a false front and Edwardian Classical Revival design elements.

Heritage Value:
Built in 1922, the Greer Block is of historic value because of its location in the 400 block of Main Street, which reflects the economic boom of the post-war, early 1920s in this area. It also reflects the expansion of Penticton's business district as it grew south from its core around the waterfront and development began on the two lower blocks of Main Street and Front Street historic areas.

The Greer Block is also valued for its association with Charles Greer, who was typical of the resilient, resourceful and opportunistic pioneers that were prevalent in the area during its early period of settlement. Greer undertook many ventures including farming a pre-emption near Fairview, commercial building construction in many south Okanagan communities, a livery business, orcharding, building the first cement block house in Penticton, road construction, proprietor of an early Ford dealership in Penticton, civic politics, real estate, and, finally, the establishment of this business block which bears his name.

The continuity of commercial uses to the present day is a reflection of the continuing economic value of Main Street to the City of Penticton, and is illustrated by the varied uses this building has had. With two stores on the main floor and a hall upstairs, it was initially home to a children's wear store, a tea house/sweets confectionery, and a dance hall. It has subsequently been home to the Masons, a meat market, a grocery store, professional offices for accountants and lawyers, and a dance studio. Currently, the upstairs has been converted to apartments.

Aesthetically, the building is valued as an example of Edwardian Classical Revival architecture, which has a symmetrical façade framed by two brick pilasters, with a large central window and two narrower ones on the second floor, surmounted by a cornice and high pediment on the front façade of the building, reminiscent of earlier false fronted buildings on the street from the era.

Character-Defining Elements:
Key elements that define the heritage character of the Greer Block include its:
  • brick pilasters
  • cornice line and pediment
  • original upstairs windows
  • decorative finials above the pediment
  • interlocking rusticated concrete block façade
  • name and date stone
    From Historic Places Canada
Photo goes Here
Official Heritage Registry: [Web Link]

410 Main Street
Penticton, BC
V2A 5C5

Heritage Registry Page Number: Not listed

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