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109-year-old Transit Hotel in Edmonton to close its doors

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WATCH ABOVE: An Edmonton landmark is about to close its doors for good. The Transit Hotel has stood on Fort Road for more than a century. Fletcher Kent has more on what's behind the closure and how people in the area are reacting. – Jun 7, 2017

A hotel that’s been part of Edmonton’s fabric since 1908 will close at the end of June.

“I was kind of shocked that it was going to happen that quick,” customer Bucky Russell said. “We’re going to miss it in the area because there are a lot of steadies around here.”

The Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue opened on Sept. 11, 1908 and was the only beer parlour along the Fort Trail to Fort Saskatchewan.

When it first opened, the Transit Hotel boasted 40 rooms, with many modern conveniences like bathrooms on the top two floors.

Patrick Dwyer built the hotel for $50,000 and, despite the hitching posts being taken down and some renovations, it kept close to its original look for over a century.

In 2008, the hotel was for sale, listed for $3.5 million.

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On Wednesday, a Transit Hotel employee confirmed the business would close June 30.

There are currently 12 tenants living in the hotel.

Some customers told Global News the venue used to be packed full, especially on nights there was live music, but now, it’s a small crowd and business has slowed significantly.

“About 10 years ago, it was pretty good,” Philip Tenant said. “But now, it went down. Nobody wants to come to drink. All the beer prices are going up.”

“Now the thing I’m worried about is where I’m going to go after this,” said Roger Comeau, who lives upstairs.

“It doesn’t make me feel nervous. It just happened so fast that… If I had more time, then I could do it.”

A sign explaining the closure was also posted on the front door Tuesday afternoon.

“With regret, due to unprecedented economic conditions, as of the end of June 2017 the Transit Hotel will be closing,” the notice reads.

A notice posted at the Transit Hotel in Edmonton on June 7, 2017. Fletcher Kent, Global News

 

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Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News
Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News
Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News
Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News
Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News
Edmonton's Transit Hotel on Fort Road and 127 Avenue. File/Global News

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