War and Depression 1914-1939
The collapse of the western Canadian real estate market in 1913 was unexpected, at least to the boosters, and severe. It did, however, stop large scale land speculation for a while. A vast amount of subdivided land on the fringes of Edmonton remained undeveloped.
The Hudson's Bay Co. Reserve, which had been the cause of such excitement in 1912, also remained undeveloped until Blatchford Field was established, now known as The Edmonton Municipal Airport.
During the recession, the real estate community throughout Alberta came to realize the need for some form of regulation for their members. In 1927, members of the real estate industry of Edmonton established the Edmonton Real Estate Association. This organization struggled for years to survive but it kept alive the idea of organized real estate. It was responsible for the passage of the first act to regulate the industry. Modifications to that act in future years and cooperation between the government and industry as a result of its passage brought substantial benefits to the whole industry and to the general public.
This article is extracted from John Gilpin, Responsible Enterprise: A History of Edmonton Real Estate & the Edmonton Real Estate Board. (Edmonton: Edmonton Real Estate Board, 1997). The Heritage Community Foundation and the Alberta Real Estate Foundation would like to thank John Gilpin and the REALTORS® Association of Edmonton for permission to reproduce this material.