The King Eddy, a once vibrant home of the blues in this town and former haunt of longtime premier Ralph Klein, has been boarded up for a couple of years now. Located on the east end of downtown, the King Eddy is one of the far too many boarded up buildings in the area, giving those few blocks a strangely neglected feel. Just a few blocks removed from the glass and steel towers and the trendy restaurants and shops of downtown proper, the area that is destined to become the East Village feels a world removed from the prosperity a stone's throw away.
Incorporating the King Edward Hotel into the new National Music Centre will not only give a permanent home to the artifacts of Canada's musical history, but it will also breathe new life into the area. The National Music Centre will house, among other things, twelve artist in residence studios, recording studios, a 300 seat concert hall, a radio station, education spaces, and 21,500 square feet of gallery space. In addition to a restored King Eddy, the NMC will incorporate an east block, across the street and joined by a bridge that will feature indoor and outdoor installation space.
There will also be a rooftop patio.
It all adds up to a pretty sweet sounding deal, not only for Calgary, but for the whole country. Because our music needs a home.