Goodbye Crocus, hello McKim: Historic downtown building renamed

The Crocus Building at 211 Bannatyne Ave. has been renamed the McKim Building and has a new sign to match.

New sign on Main Street and Bannatyne Avenue landmark unveiled Wednesday

The new sign on the old Crocus Building was unveiled Wednesday afternoon. The building, now known as the McKim Building, began life as the J.H. Ashdown Hardware store. (CBC)

A Winnipeg landmark got a new look, along with a new name, on Wednesday.

The Crocus Building at 211 Bannatyne Ave. has been renamed the McKim Building, and has a fresh sign to match.

The now well-known vertical Crocus sign was swapped out for a similar one reading "McKim" that was unveiled Wednesday afternoon.

"Renaming this historical site as the McKim Building is indicative of a new chapter for a building that has had a significant role in the story of downtown Winnipeg," said Peter George, president of McKim Communications Group.

The advertising agency has long been a tenant of the historic building and recently acquired its naming rights, the company said in a press release.

The building, at the corner of Main Street and Bannatyne Avenue, was previously the J. H. Ashdown Hardware store, a major hardware store at the turn of last century, according to Heritage Winnipeg.

In 2001, the now-defunct Crocus Investment Fund entered into what was to be a 15-year lease agreement for the building, according to a Deloitte report on the fund.

Crocus stopped trading in December 2004 over concerns about the true value of its shares and went into receivership in June 2005, soon after which the RCMP began a criminal investigation into its operations.

The historic building at 211 Bannatyne Ave. was renamed the McKim Building on Wednesday. (CBC)