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History of Stock Yards

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The Stock Yards were part of the City of St. Boniface when it combined with surrounding municipalities to become the City of Winnipeg which came into legal existence on January 1, 1972.

The Union Stock Yards, located in northeast St. Boniface, was one of the most important industrial sites in the cities of St. Boniface and Winnipeg and for many decades the largest venture of its type in Canada. Originally located on an 80-hectare site and created by an act of the Provincial Legislature in 1911, the Union Stock Yards included miles of spur lines connected to the main lines of the three transcontinental railway systems that funded the yards. The yards also came to house large meat packing factories (now demolished) as well as approximately 1,300 hog and cattle pens and 25 corrals that could accommodate 25,000 animals at any given time. The site also included the administrative headquarters, the Public Market Building, a powerhouse and a metal water tower south of Marion Street.

The yards functioned efficiently for over half a decade and were an important part of Canada's contribution to feeding overseas troops in both world wars. The completion of the Trans Canada Highway in 1955 and the subsequent increase in trucking (especially refrigerated vehicles) by the 1970s meant a steady decline in traffic through the Stock Yards in St. Boniface. It closed permanently in 1988 and the rail lines and animal pens were removed shortly thereafter.