Living Heritage: Re-imagining Wooden Crib Grain Elevators in Saskatchewan

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Piwowar, Alixandra




This thesis explores the tangible and intangible cultural heritage of the wooden grain elevators in Saskatchewan. As wooden elevators become obsolete in the face of progressive agricultural technology, they are facing abandonment, and demolition. While these elevators were once purely functional structures, their unintentional monumentality has contributed to their relationship with Prairie people fostering identities. Wooden grain elevators are explored in the context of the past, present, and future using archival research, site visits, and interviews. A case study demonstrating the adaptive reuse of a wooden elevator is developed for Indian Head, SK. The concept of "living heritage" is employed to investigate the tangible and intangible cultural heritage associated with grain elevators as both theory and action—a way of thinking and a way of acting towards the past. This thesis substantiates the importance of wooden grain elevators to Prairie people and prescribes an architectural response for adaptive reuse.






Carleton University

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Master of Architecture: 

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Theses and Dissertations

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