Heritage status for downtown Winnipeg strip club hotel one step closer

A long-running downtown hotel is closer to being designated as a heritage building after a unanimous vote Wednesday by the city’s historical buildings and resources committee.

The committee voted unanimously to add the Oxford Hotel, built in 1905 on Notre Dame Avenue, to the city’s protected resource list.

The Oxford, currently home to the Solid Gold strip club, played an important role in the 1919 Winnipeg General Strike, which began 100 years ago Wednesday.

The Oxford Hotel in downtown Winnipeg.

The hotel served as a kitchen – known as the Labour Cafe – for striking workers and their families and served over 1,200 free meals daily during the strike.

The hotel’s current owner, however, submitted a written submission to the city asking that the Oxford not receive heritage status, and disputes its historical relevance.

“Other than it being old, it is non-descript in its character, construction and from an architectural perspective,” the statement said.

“It should be noted that there is no known important historical event connected with the Oxford Hotel. In that sense, the Oxford Hotel has no historical importance that could or should justify the addition of the Oxford Hotel to the List of Historical Resources.”

The next step for the hotel to gain heritage status is approval by the property and development committee. If there’s still disagreement between the city and the property owner, council will make a final decision.

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