North End, Winnipeg

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North End
Skyline of North End
Country  Canada
Province  Manitoba
City Winnipeg

The North End is a large area located to the north and northwest of Downtown Winnipeg. It is bordered by the Red River on the east, the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) mainline on the south, the City of Winnipeg boundary (Brookside Boulevard) on the west and Jefferson Avenue, Keewatin Street, Carruthers Avenue, McGregor Street and the lane between McAdam and Smithfield Avenues on the north. It is the northern section of the City of Winnipeg as it existed prior to the 1972 municipal amalgamation. Winnipeg's northern suburbs such as West Kildonan and Old Kildonan are not considered part of the North End. The CPR mainline and its Winnipeg yards, which are one of the largest railway yards in the world, act as a physical barrier between the North End and the rest of Winnipeg. This has resulted in the North End remaining a very distinct and unique part of Winnipeg.

The areas to the east of McPhillips Street are considered the Old North End, and were developed in the late 19th century and early 20th century, while the areas to the west were generally developed in the 1940s and later. The area is primarily residential, though there is some light industrial development in Inkster Industrial Park and adjacent to Oak Point Highway and Brookside Boulevard.


The area was originally a part of the Parish of St. John. Gradually the boundary of the City of Winnipeg was extended north and parts of the North End today are in the Parish of Kildonan. It is one of the oldest settled parts of Winnipeg. It was the location of Fort Douglas, built by the Selkirk settlers in 1812. Urban development of the area as a working class residential area began in the 1880s. Streetcar service commenced in 1892, although early patrons were forced to walk across the railway tracks for transportation to Downtown Winnipeg until completion of the Main Street underpass in 1904. By the 1910s the area was heavily developed and had a large population of immigrants from Central and Eastern Europe. The area was known for its high incidences of extreme poverty and relatively high prevalence of diseases such as typhoid fever and cholera. In the Winnipeg General Strike of 1919, the North End, as a working class area, was decidedly pro-strike.

The area has long been acknowledged as the most socially deprived part of the city of Winnipeg. Parts of the area, especially east of McPhillips Street and south of Mountain Avenue are marked by high drug use and its associated crime and gang violence. Since the 1980s, attempts to revitalize parts of the North End have been made with many grassroot organizations sprouting up along with many not-for-profit organizations. Together with neighbourhood grants and the grants through Manitoba Hydro, the area has seen a major improvement in its housing. Manitoba Hydro's grant alone accounted for a large number of homes to be totally insulated and have their furnaces upgraded.

The North End was considered Ward Three in the Old City of Winnipeg and historically voted for left of centre parties. It was represented by Communist Party of Canada aldermen (Jacob Penner and Joseph Zuken) from 1933 to 1983. The area also elected communists James Litterick and Bill Kardash to the Manitoba Legislative Assembly. From the 1990s until recently, the area has tended to support the New Democratic Party in Federal elections.


Regarding the boundaries of the North End, it would contain 18 neighbourhoods;[1] North Point Douglas, Lord Selkirk Park, Dufferin, Dufferin Industrial and William Whyte, which are a part of the Point Douglas South neighbourhood cluster; Mynarski, Burrows Central, Robertson, Inkster-Faraday, St John's, St. Johns Park and Luxton, which are a part of the Point Douglas North neighbourhood cluster; Weston Shops, Inkster Industrial, Burrows-Keewatin and Shaughnessy Park of the Inkster East neighbourhood cluster, and; Tyndall Park and Oak Point Highway of the Inkster West neighbourhood cluster. The neighborhoods in bold are a part of the "Old North End".


All rates per 100,000

In 2011, there were 18 homicides in the North End alone, making a rate per 100,000 people at 32.6,[2] but the following year there were only 1/3 the number of homicides, 6, making the rate 10.2. Midway through 2013, the rate is on pace to be even lower, at 7.2.

The crime in the Old North End is very high. In 2012, there were 374 robberies (1175.0 per 100,000 residents), 352 auto thefts (1105.9), 624 break-ins (1960.4) and 17 shootings (53.4).[3]


The population of the North End according to the 2006 Census, is 55,240 people (Old North End: 31,830).[1][4]

Racial Groups in the North End, Winnipeg[1]
Population group Population (2006)  % of total population (2006)
White 26,525 48%
Visible minority group South Asian 1,020 1.8%
East Asian 915 1.7%
Black 700 1.3%
Latin American 550 1%
Arab & West Asian 100 0.2%
Southeast Asian 10,815 19.6%
Other 145 0.3%
Multiracial 900 1.6%
Total visible minority population 15,145 27.4%
Aboriginal group First Nations 6,260 11.3%
Métis 6,150 11.1%
Inuit 40 0.1%
Aboriginal, n.i.e. 355 0.6%
Multiple Aboriginal identities 765 1.4%
Total Aboriginal population 13,570 24.6%
Total population 55,240 100%

Famous North-Enders[edit]

Game show host and producer Monty Hall, novelist Adele Wiseman, comedian David Steinberg, journalist Larry Zolf, politician Lloyd Axworthy, musician Burton Cummings of the Guess Who and scientist Louis Slotin.

The Genie Award winning documentary Ted Baryluk's Grocery was filmed in the area.

Katherena Vermette's poetry collection North End Love Songs, which won the Governor General's Award for English-language poetry in 2013, is titled for and inspired by the neighbourhood.[5]


External links[edit]