A building of notable distinction, in its time as an urban apartment complex it was a high-tech showpiece, featuring steam laundry, garbage chutes, central hot water heating and even Murphy beds. In the beginning of the 1980's a transition in The Devenish's mandate occurred with new owners. The building was deemed a historical resource by the province in 1981. A year after, The Devenish was purchased for $2.5 million and converted into a commercial building.
The city followed suit almost 30 years later in 2008. Bob Van Wegen of the Calgary Heritage Initiative, an organization that lobbies for the protection and productive use of architecturally and historical significant sites in the city, says the Devenish is important. “It’s the main landmark on the avenue, it’s the landmark that really defines 17th Ave. and has done so for almost 100 years now,”