In the mid-1960s, there were direct threats to the existence of Chinatown. City planners came close to demolishing Chinatown. In 1965 a proposal to build an extension to the Bow Trail through Chinatown from east to west threatened to destroy the area. Then, City Hall proposed that major freeways be laid down through the district’s core. Finally, in 1967, a new Centre Street Bridge was recommended - another serious threat to Chinatown. Had the proposal been implemented, Chinatown would have ceased to exist.

在1960年代中期,唐人街的存在受到不少威脅。城市規劃者幾乎要拆除唐人街。 1965年,一項提議從東到西橫跨唐人街對寶大路進行擴建的提議威脅要摧毀該地區。然後,市政廳提議在該地區的核心區域鋪設主要高速公路。最終,在1967年,推薦了新的中央大街橋-這是對唐人街的又一嚴重威脅。如果該建議得以實施,如今的唐人街將不復存在。

The Chinatown community demonstrated its resilience by organizing opposition to these proposals. Determined efforts by the community as a whole led to the city agreeing by 1971 to leave Chinatown intact - for the time being.

 

In 1973 the third civic freeway proposal was made public. The community again successfully fought the proposal. In 1974, the city was persuaded to officially designate boundaries for Chinatown. They ran from the riverbank to 4th Avenue SW and from 2nd Street SE to 2nd Street SW. A design brief, calling for the revitalization of Chinatown, was officially approved in 1976.

 

In 1974 work officially began on the Harry Hays Building, a major federal government structure occupying a full block in Chinatown. Some 180 Chinatown residents had to be relocated.

 

In 1976, Oi Kwan Place, a senior citizen’s residence, was completed.

 

In 1978 construction began on a building owned by the Mah Society.

 

​​In 1979, Bowside Manor, a federal government subsidized project was completed. At roughly the same time, various other businesses were started in Chinatown.

華埠社團組織起來反對這些建議,從中表現了它的實力。整個社區的堅定努力導致這座城市在1971年同意保留唐人街。

1973年市政府公佈第三次動議興建高速公路,貫通華埠,而華埠社區又再一次有效反對此建議。1974 年市政府終於同意正式劃定唐人街的範園,由河邊到西南第四大道及由東南二街至西南二街。1976年市政府正式同意簡略設計的唐人街計劃書。

1974年聯邦政府大廈開始興建,佔撥了唐人街的整段路,迫使居住在該處的180 名居民搬遷。

1976年,愛群耆英大廈落成。

1978年馬氏大廈開始興建。

1979年,聯邦政府津貼的河濱大廈(BOWSIDE MANOR)落成。大約在同時期,其他各類的商業在唐人街也開始經營。

1968-1994

Part 3

1968-1994

Part 1

1968-1994 Part 2

Chinatown’s Survival and Expansion

唐人街的生存與擴展

Employment and Occupations

工作及職業

1980年代早期的繁榮,構成對華埠的另一威脅。當時發展商為了在市中心建築商業大廈,積極尋覓新地點。他們欲興建特高建築的願望將會毀滅華埠這具特色地區的完整。

1982年秋天是卡爾加里唐人街的關鍵時期。根據最初由納稅人協會向市議會提出的土地用途重新分配提案,唐人街的土地使用區域將被重新劃分為不合理的高密度區域,實際上使唐人街成為城市核心的延伸。這將使華埠的地位及其特色日漸衰退。此項改革華埠的提議被各社團群起反對,力爭保持華埠的原有特色。

經過華人社區,土地所有者和市政官員之間長達一年半的每週會議和持續的談判,唐人街的區域重建計劃(ARP)被參與該過程的各方一致接受。結果,在隨後的幾年中成功完成了兩個重要的社區項目。於1988年落成,耗資900萬美元的高級住宅項目華英大廈(Wah Ying Mansion)於1992年落成,耗資1,000萬美元的卡爾加里地標性建築“中國文化中心”。振興唐人街。在短短的幾年內,該地區就變成了世界上最整潔而有序的唐人街之一。

當一群關係社區利益的人士立志為完成中華文化中心的工程而效力的時候,他們都一致相信這一個完善的文化中心將會為華人社區作出很大的貢獻,以及幫助華人社團實現他們的理想。

在極其不利的經濟條件下,僅用八年的時間就將文化中心從純粹的概念轉變為宏偉的地標這一事實,生動地證明了華人社區的勇氣,信心,決心和機智。

The boom of the early 1980s brought another threat to Chinatown from developers seeking new lands for downtown office towers. They wanted to have extremely high density buildings that would threaten the integrity and character of this distinctive district.

 

The autumn of 1982 was a critical time for Calgary’s Chinatown. Under the land-use redesignation proposal as originally presented to City Council by the Ratepayer’s Association, land use in Chinatown would have been rezoned to an unreasonably high density, in effect making Chinatown an extension of the city core. Chinatown would eventually disintegrate and disappear in the process. Strong opposition to such a proposal was mounted by a small group of community minded people to save Chinatown.

 

Through weekly meetings and continuous negotiations over the course of a year and a half between the Chinese community, the landowners and City officials, an Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP) for Chinatown was unanimously accepted by all parties involved in the process. As a result, two major community projects were successfully completed in the ensuing years. A nine million dollar senior housing project, Wah Ying Mansion, was completed in 1988 and a ten million dollar Calgary landmark, the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre, was completed in 1992. Landowners and developers also responded by building new properties to meet the growing needs of a revitalized Chinatown. In just a few short years, the area was transformed into one of the cleanest and most orderly-developed Chinatowns anywhere.

 

When a group of community-minded individuals committed themselves to undertake the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre project, they shared a common vision that a properly established cultural centre could help to fulfill the aspirations of their community. Given the opportunity and good leadership, the community could channel its energy and resources to accomplish many meaningful objectives.

 

The fact that it has taken only eight years to turn the Cultural Centre from pure concept into a magnificent landmark in extremely adverse economic conditions is vivid testimony to the courage, confidence, determination and resourcefulness of the Chinese community.

Cultural barriers and ongoing discrimination forced most early Chinese immigrants to work at menial jobs.

 

Many opened laundries during the early 1900s, and until about 1940, a Chinese hand laundry could be found in almost every hamlet and town in Alberta. Chinese restaurants and Chinese grocery stores ranked second and third in terms of Chinese businesses, with Chinese restaurants as the major source of employment.

 

Chinese immigrants had to work very hard to make a living. Restaurants and groceries had to open early in the morning and close late in the evening in order to make a profit. There was often no time for breaks; many worked non-stop seven days a week. Those who worked fifteen to eighteen hours a day received roughly twenty-five to thirty dollars per month. Laundry work was especially wearisome, because it meant the soaking, scrubbing and ironing of clothes solely by hand.

 

There were a few other occupations available to early Chinese immigrants, such as hotel workers, labourers, market gardeners and domestic servants. In the country-side, Chinese cooks were hired by ranchers.

 

After 1900, a great number of Chinese immigrants in Calgary were employed as domestic servants, catering to the needs of wealthy Calgarians. Paid twenty-five dollars a month, a Chinese houseboy was quick to give courteous service, and generally worked hard.

文化障礙和持續的歧視迫使大多數中國早期移民從事低賤的工作。

在1900年代初期,許多華人經營洗衣店,直到1940年左右,在艾伯塔省幾乎每個小村莊和城鎮都可以找到華人經營洗衣店。其次中国餐销和雜貨店,也是華人受僱傭的主要來源。

華人為生活而勤力工作,為了生計,餐館和雜貨店由早上開始營業,直至深夜才休息;一周七天不間斷工作。每個人每天工作15到18個小時,而每月收入25到30美元。洗衣是一件令人非常容易疲乏的工作,因為整個過程需要浸、擦和烫,而且全部都是用手来完成。

此外,華人還有其他一些職業,例如旅館工人,勞工,市場園藝師和家政服務員。在郊外的牧場主人也大多僱傭華人當廚師。

1900 年之後, 有不少華人被雇用為家政服務員,為富有的卡爾加里人服務。一個中國男僕每月支付25美元, 一般的中國僕人都甚為勤奮以及任勞任怨。

從1910年到1930年,很多重要的華人社圃組織得以建立,例如致公堂,國民黨,華僑公立學校和馬氏公所。中國基督教青年會,也被稱為卡爾加里中國傳道會,也在唐人街成立。它更組成了加拿大第一個華人中國冰棍球隊。

僑居加拿大的中國人採用中國傳統的社區結構。堂所,宗親會和同鄉會提供住宿之所,協助謀職及為失業者提供膳食。堂所提供的服務切合華僑的需要。在三十年代經濟大蕭條之前,卡城華僑引以為榮的就是全市沒有一個華人領取社會救濟金或公然乞討。在經濟大蕭條期間,失業的華僑在領取救濟時只從政府處領到白人金額之半數,因而仍依賴堂所提供的膳宿。

社團活動是華僑生活的一個重要組成部分,而宗親會是最基本的組織。今日的堂所提供的活動及服務都不及以前的廣泛,但堂所仍扮演著重要的角色。在過去的二十年來,因有大批新移民在卡城定居,所以不斷有新的堂所成立。今日華埠約有六十多個堂所,宗親會,同鄉會,教會,體育會,專業聯會及商會。此外更有中文學校,以國語及粵語授課。在重大的節日如農曆新年或多元文化活動,整個社區都會聯合起來籌辦慶祝節目。

From 1910 to 1930, significant organizations of the Calgary Chinese community were established, such as the Chi Gong Tong, the Chinese National League, the Chinese Public School, and the Mah Society. The Chinese YMCA, known as the Calgary Chinese Mission, was organized in Chinatown as well. It established Canada’s first all-Chinese hockey team.

 

In establishing the structure of their community, Chinese adapted traditional institutions to the Canadian environment. Tongs, mutual aid associations, offered frugal accommodation in rooming houses, help finding jobs, or sustenance when jobs couldn’t be found. The tongs were so effective that until the Depression the Chinese community took pride in the fact that not one Chinese-Canadian in Calgary had received charity or been a public charge. Even when unemployed Chinese immigrants rarely resorted to accepting relief during the Depression of the 1930s, they continued to rely on the tongs for food and shelter, as the government, for some reason, gave Chinese half the relief money allocated to other Canadians.

 

Calgary’s clan associations, which are a crucial component of community life, are composed of members who have the same family name. Clan associations of today fulfil fewer functions than they did many years ago, but they still play a definitive role. Because of the large number of immigrants who have settled in Calgary during the last twenty years, new clan associations have been established. Today there are approximately sixty Chinese organizations in Calgary: various family associations, church groups, athletic clubs, professional and business associations. There are also Chinese schools teaching Cantonese and Mandarin. Annual events such as the Spring Festival, and other multicultural activities are supported by the entire community to retain its fascinating culture.

Formation and Clans of Family Organizations

同鄉會及宗親會的成立

The Chinatown community demonstrated its resilience by organizing opposition to these proposals. Determined efforts by the community as a whole led to the city agreeing by 1971 to leave Chinatown intact - for the time being.

 

In 1973 the third civic freeway proposal was made public. The community again successfully fought the proposal. In 1974, the city was persuaded to officially designate boundaries for Chinatown. They ran from the riverbank to 4th Avenue SW and from 2nd Street SE to 2nd Street SW. A design brief, calling for the revitalization of Chinatown, was officially approved in 1976.

 

In 1974 work officially began on the Harry Hays Building, a major federal government structure occupying a full block in Chinatown. Some 180 Chinatown residents had to be relocated.

 

In 1976, Oi Kwan Place, a senior citizen’s residence, was completed.

 

In 1978 construction began on a building owned by the Mah Society.

 

​​In 1979, Bowside Manor, a federal government subsidized project was completed. At roughly the same time, various other businesses were started in Chinatown.

The boom of the early 1980s brought another threat to Chinatown from developers seeking new lands for downtown office towers. They wanted to have extremely high density buildings that would threaten the integrity and character of this distinctive district.

 

The autumn of 1982 was a critical time for Calgary’s Chinatown. Under the land-use redesignation proposal as originally presented to City Council by the Ratepayer’s Association, land use in Chinatown would have been rezoned to an unreasonably high density, in effect making Chinatown an extension of the city core. Chinatown would eventually disintegrate and disappear in the process. Strong opposition to such a proposal was mounted by a small group of community minded people to save Chinatown.

 

Through weekly meetings and continuous negotiations over the course of a year and a half between the Chinese community, the landowners and City officials, an Area Redevelopment Plan (ARP) for Chinatown was unanimously accepted by all parties involved in the process. As a result, two major community projects were successfully completed in the ensuing years. A nine million dollar senior housing project, Wah Ying Mansion, was completed in 1988 and a ten million dollar Calgary landmark, the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre, was completed in 1992. Landowners and developers also responded by building new properties to meet the growing needs of a revitalized Chinatown. In just a few short years, the area was transformed into one of the cleanest and most orderly-developed Chinatowns anywhere.

 

When a group of community-minded individuals committed themselves to undertake the Calgary Chinese Cultural Centre project, they shared a common vision that a properly established cultural centre could help to fulfill the aspirations of their community. Given the opportunity and good leadership, the community could channel its energy and resources to accomplish many meaningful objectives.

 

The fact that it has taken only eight years to turn the Cultural Centre from pure concept into a magnificent landmark in extremely adverse economic conditions is vivid testimony to the courage, confidence, determination and resourcefulness of the Chinese community.

Cultural barriers and ongoing discrimination forced most early Chinese immigrants to work at menial jobs.

 

Many opened laundries during the early 1900s, and until about 1940, a Chinese hand laundry could be found in almost every hamlet and town in Alberta. Chinese restaurants and Chinese grocery stores ranked second and third in terms of Chinese businesses, with Chinese restaurants as the major source of employment.

 

Chinese immigrants had to work very hard to make a living. Restaurants and groceries had to open early in the morning and close late in the evening in order to make a profit. There was often no time for breaks; many worked non-stop seven days a week. Those who worked fifteen to eighteen hours a day received roughly twenty-five to thirty dollars per month. Laundry work was especially wearisome, because it meant the soaking, scrubbing and ironing of clothes solely by hand.

 

There were a few other occupations available to early Chinese immigrants, such as hotel workers, labourers, market gardeners and domestic servants. In the country-side, Chinese cooks were hired by ranchers.

 

After 1900, a great number of Chinese immigrants in Calgary were employed as domestic servants, catering to the needs of wealthy Calgarians. Paid twenty-five dollars a month, a Chinese houseboy was quick to give courteous service, and generally worked hard.

From 1910 to 1930, significant organizations of the Calgary Chinese community were established, such as the Chi Gong Tong, the Chinese National League, the Chinese Public School, and the Mah Society. The Chinese YMCA, known as the Calgary Chinese Mission, was organized in Chinatown as well. It established Canada’s first all-Chinese hockey team.

 

In establishing the structure of their community, Chinese adapted traditional institutions to the Canadian environment. Tongs, mutual aid associations, offered frugal accommodation in rooming houses, help finding jobs, or sustenance when jobs couldn’t be found. The tongs were so effective that until the Depression the Chinese community took pride in the fact that not one Chinese-Canadian in Calgary had received charity or been a public charge. Even when unemployed Chinese immigrants rarely resorted to accepting relief during the Depression of the 1930s, they continued to rely on the tongs for food and shelter, as the government, for some reason, gave Chinese half the relief money allocated to other Canadians.

 

Calgary’s clan associations, which are a crucial component of community life, are composed of members who have the same family name. Clan associations of today fulfil fewer functions than they did many years ago, but they still play a definitive role. Because of the large number of immigrants who have settled in Calgary during the last twenty years, new clan associations have been established. Today there are approximately sixty Chinese organizations in Calgary: various family associations, church groups, athletic clubs, professional and business associations. There are also Chinese schools teaching Cantonese and Mandarin. Annual events such as the Spring Festival, and other multicultural activities are supported by the entire community to retain its fascinating culture.