Facelifts: Urban

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The fourth installment in our Face Lift series, exploring the new face of our city.


mC:t    2015.07.17    

Need more examples of Calgary facelifts? Look no further!

Architectural Facelifts take shape in many forms and scales. We are defining them as something that has brought a new characteristic to either a building or environment. Successful facelifts intentionally design themselves around a desired outcome. This is why it is so critical for Calgary to question not just who it is but more critically, what does it want to be? Currently, the city has entered its awkward teen years where it has really begun to question who it aspires to be. These growing pains that we are dealing with are natural. They provide us options and stimulate discussion by constantly confronting us.

This is where you come in… today take a look at any new buildings, facades, renovations, installations and simply ask the question; why? The intent of a facelift does not always need to be obvious, but the questioning of intent only helps develop a stronger sense of ownership and understanding of who our city is and what it should be.

To set you on your way we have provided a few fun examples. Below is a look at how different local firms and designers have approached facelifts on a commercial building scale. Although the scale of the building itself may be large don’t be mistaken, the solutions are not always what you may think.

So let’s find those facelifts and discover our new identity… no pun intended.


Twobytwo Studio– “Me, You, Us”



Modern Office of Architecture + Design “Juntion 9″

Junction 9


RAD Architecture/Interiors “Clive Burger”

Rad architecture


Sturgess Architecture “The Bow Tower Urban Design”



Don’t be afraid to explore the areas that you would not expect to find a facelift. Sometimes that is where the most innovative ones exist. Good luck searching and don’t forget we would love to hear from you! Post your photos on Instagram using #faceliftyyc and help us compile a growing visual diary of inspiring facelifts in Calgary. Alternatively you can let us know your findings on our twitter handle@makecalgarytalk.



Next: A Search for Personality in Calgary’s Homes
Previous: Are You Afraid of The Dark?


[1] All photos were taken by the author


makeCalgary:talk provokes conversation among Calgarians about the design of our city. Catch up with us on Twitter (@makecalgarytalk), Instagram (makecalgarytalk), or Facebook.



  1. MCtalk says:

    I think one must look towards geography and social history while thinking about a regions identity. For me, the image is already there. One just needs to alien with the prevalent spirit of a place and then may be decide what physical character it should acquire. Nice photographs and selection of case studies.

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