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Firm: Clayton Bond and Mogridge (partially)

Address: 9250 Lower Springbank Road SW

Date: 1957

Status: standing as built

Figuring out the history of "Cliffcrest" is a bit of a challenge. From what I can tell, the southeast portion of the building was the original house, onto which Walker built a large extension. Among Clayton Bond and Mogridge's records there is a set of preliminary drawings for the addition; there are no final plans. These drawings very much resemble the final house, with some minor differences. (See first two images below.)

According to a profile of the house published in the Herald Magazine on 12 October 1957, Mr and Mrs Walker designed the house ad hoc and directed the builders as they went along. However, it is clear the CB&M plans were used in part. The interior designer Garnet Kerr designed the tee-pee fireplace in the basement.

When it was completed, the Walker House was likely the largest home in Calgary, with 51 rooms including nine bathrooms, a gymnasium, conservatory, milkshake bar, steam bath, theatre, and servants' quarters. The master bedroom included a television embedded in the ceiling. The Walkers travelled the world to purchase decorations. One interesting feature was the basement fireplace, which was desgned to look like a teepee in a forest. On Saturday, 14 September 1957 the Walkers held a large garden party to celebrate the completion of their house. Attendees included the mayor and several Council members.

A year after the Walkers completed their house, Ruth's parents Eldon and Sara Tanner began building their own house, "Rockyview," next door. It was completed in early 1960. Both houses were included in the 1962 tourism film Calgary: The Living West (at 3:34).

I've looked at quite a few aerials of the house, and it appears to be mostly original. It's impossible to say what the interior looks like.



Clifford Ross Walker (1918–1975) was born in Taber on 7 December 1918 and went to school in Grassy Lake. After moving to Calgary, he served as the president of Merrill Petroleums and Cascade Drilling Company. He was also a director of Sturdie Propane Limited. Walker was heavily involved in the Mormon Church and was also a member of the Rotary Club. In 1967 the Walkers moved to Provost, Utah.

On 24 September 1946, Walker married Ruth Merrill Tanner (1920–2000). Ruth was the daughter of Nathan Eldon Tanner (1898–1982), the first president of Trans-Canada Pipe Lines Limited (1954-57). The Walkers had five children: Thomas, Clifford, Merrill, John, and Carolyn. Walker died in Provost on 15 March 1975 at age 56.

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