An historic Edmonton bar once home to the city’s first gay bar has been destroyed by a fire.
On Tuesday, just before 10:30 p.m., Edmonton Fire Rescue Services (EFRS) received a call reporting flames coming from the front of Milla Pub, located at 10593 101 St.
EFRS spokeswoman Brittany Lewchuk said crews arrived on scene and confirmed a working fire, with a total of nine units that responded to the boarded up building.
Lewchuk said 101 Street was closed in both directions while crews worked. The fire was brought under control just before 1:30 a.m., Wednesday.
A crew remained on scene, watching for hot spots and for a track hoe to arrive to begin taking down the remains of the building.
No injuries were reported and fire investigators are looking into the cause and damage estimate of the blaze.
According to the Edmonton Heritage Council’s Edmonton City as Museum Project , the pub was scheduled for demolition in August 2020.
Located in the McCauley neighbourhood, Milla Pub was shuttered in 2015. The basement was once home to Club 70, the city’s first established gay bar. It opened in 1969 but the location was short lived. After the owner realized gay people were using his building, he shut the doors and denied further entry.
The pub also bared witness to many shootings, stabbings, and gang violence.
Milla Pub was also once used as a site to help immunize the city’s homeless population. Nurses with the Streetworks team at Boyle Street Community Services would set up mini flu clinics at inner city bars like Milla Pub to bring the flu shot directly to the homeless or hard-to-house population.