The Simmons Building, also referred to as the Simmons Factory Warehouse, was built in 1912. The two-storey brick structure sits on the bank of the Bow River, in front of the RiverWalk Plaza.
The heritage building is best known for its long-term association with Simmons Canada, a nationwide bedding manufacturing company. During World War II, the building was used exclusively to provide bedding for the military. The Simmons is one of the last remaining buildings of its kind in this part of the city, and serves as a reminder of the light industry that once thrived in downtown Calgary.
The Simmons Building features standard post-and-beam construction, with brick exterior walls. The twelve-inch square fir posts, short-span beams and mill floors provided maximum floor-loading capability to support heavy machinery and stacks of mattresses.
Four years ago, CMLC refurbished the Simmons Building. Windows and mechanical systems were repaired, years of contaminated paint and materials were removed, flooring was refinished and new fire protection systems and doors were installed. While CMLC’s head office has been in the Simmons Building since 2007, the building has always been envisioned as an important community commercial space along RiverWalk. In May 2011, CMLC issued a national Expression of Interest (EOI) seeking groups interested in leasing the historic building. In April 2012, CMLC relocated to the restored Hillier Block to make way for future tenants in the Simmons Building.