Edmonton has a love-hate affair with weird-looking buildings: Here are four of the most eccentric designs

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Pro: Perfect for hosting festivals

Con: The dinosaurs could attack any minute

Art Gallery of Alberta The exterior of the Art Gallery of Alberta, 2 Sir Winston Churchill Square, in Edmonton Alta. on Saturday Sept. 30, 2015. David Bloom/Edmonton Sun/Postmedia Network
David Bloom, David Bloom/Edmonton Sun
The Art Gallery of Alberta is one of the unique buildings at Churchill Square. Photo by David Bloom /Postmedia

We can only hope for a giant replica of the Roman coliseum to be constructed somewhere in Old Strathcona for all of us to fight over, but in the meantime here are a few other interesting designs that add flavour to the city’s architectural heritage:

The Stanley A. Milner Library

Edmontonians weren’t the only ones to gape in stupified wonder when the outside of the revitalized downtown library was first revealed last year; people all over the world made a point of weighing in. And why not, given the fact that the city had apparently decided that the phrase “the war on illiteracy” needed to be taken more seriously with what looks (on the outside) to be the kind of space age vehicle that Lemmy sang about in Silver Machine. Now that people are finally seeing the inside there’s beena reverse in opinion, but some are still wondering when the building will uproot and roll over Clareview, guns a-blazing.

Pro: A modern, up-to-date building with incredible resources.

Con: Will potentially bully the other buildings into silence.

Manchester Square

The uproar when pictures of the Manchester Square development in Queen Mary Park hit social media last early spring was considerable.

Described by Anton Morgulis, CEO of the developer group, as a nod towards the architecture of Amsterdam, the colourful strip mall with its tall, thin, and primary coloured old world facade was immediately hit with a wave of derision from some quarters. One Twitter user compared it mockingly to Europa Blvd in West Edmonton Mall, while another lamented that the city should stop “trying to be fake versions of other places and build something locally inspired.” Others found the slice of faux Europe, which will eventually boast such features as outdoor fountains, promenade, and an indoor alleyway, to be charming and eye-catching. It certainly stands out on 107 Avenue, a jolt to the senses next to a dentist’s office and Mister Frame.

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