Sunday, 21 March 2010

Safeway in Winnipeg Part 3 - 1939 to 49

1940s logo

1939 was a busy year for Canada Safeway.

The company purchased Vancouver-based Empress Manufacturing Company, a producer of jams, jellies and packager of everything from spices to fruit.

Winnipeg Tribune Feb 28, 1940
Under new district manager E.J. Belshaw, Winnipeg pared down their Piggly Wiggly outlets and incorporated 12 of the 22 stores under the Safeway banner, including:

Old Safeway
700 Osborne Street

Old Safeway
467 Sargent Avenue near Balmoral Street

Old Safeway
775 Westminster Avenue at Chestnut Street

Also (since demolished):

525 Academy Road
619 Broadway

471 Broadway

1413 Main Street (perhaps incorporated with 1411)

137 Osborne Street

607 Portage Avenue
1821 Portage
61 Sherbrook Street

673 William Avenue

This meant that a number of stores were closed, including some original Safeways built just a few years earlier at: 605 Main Street; 1413 Main Street and 653 William Avenue. This brought the chain down to 40 stores from 49.

Safeway opened a new store in Winnipeg Beach on July 15, 1939 and began advertising stores in Selkirk and Transcona, though I am not sure if the last two were new marketing or brand new locations.

Also in 1939, Safeway began construction on a series of new era stores simply called the "1940 Model Store". Safeway 'pushed the envelope' with larger floor plans and features like central air conditioning, full meat counters, shopping buggies and customer parking. The first of the 1940 stores were built at Salter (NW corner of Mountain), Broadway at Young, Academy at Niakwa and Carlton and Graham.

Winnipeg Tribune Nov 13, 1941

Also opened in 1940 was what has likely been the busiest of the Winnipeg stores over the decades at River Avenue and Osborne Street.

Old Safeway
 619 Broadway at Young

The only 1940 era store that appears to have survived is Broadway at Young Street. It's now a Pal's Supermarket. (Coincidentally, the only 1929 era store still used as a grocery store is also a Pal's on St. Matthews Avenue.)

The new stores further changed the Safeway landscape in Winnipeg between 1940 - 42. ('S' indicates an original Safeway Store, 'P' indicates a Piggly Wiggly store):
- 441 Academy replaced three locations at 525(P), 384(P) and 410(S) Academy.

- 619 Broadway closed 595 Broadway(S) and Broadway and Young (P).

- Also closed: 1843 Ellice(S); 221 Kelvin/Henderson(P); 1413 Main(P); 108 Marion(P); 102 Osborne(S); 137 Osborne(P); 422 Portage(S); 893 Portage(S); 1006 Portage(S); 2611 Portage(S); 607 Portage(P); 875 Portage(P); 1315 Portage (P); 862 St. Mary's Rd(S); 393 St. Mary's Rd(P); 61 Sherbrook(P) ; 294 Westminster(S).

When the amalgamation and construction settled down in 1942 the chain was smaller with 32 stores in the city and 60 in the 'Manitoba Region'.

For a map of 1943-1949 Safeway chain.

The full (4 part) Safeway in Winnipeg series:
- Safeway in Winnipeg Part 1 - Setting Up Shop
- Safeway in Winnipeg Part 2 - The Boom Years
- Safeway in Winnipeg Part 3 - 1939 to 1949
- Safeway in Winnipeg Part 4 - Sweeping Styles

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