Constructed: 1956 and 1978?
Size: 3 sotery, 35,247 sq ft (plus basement)
Piecing together the history of the 300 block of Donald street is difficult as much of it's early life is shared between what was is the Donalda Block at 310 Donald Street and buildings that were once at 314 - 320 Donald.
A constant at the location from 1906 to 1994 was was recreation. On October 4 1906 Saratoga Lanes opened at 314 Donald. In 1913 Stag Billiards, (that I believe once was on Main Street), opened a 45 table billiard hall. By 1949 it was known as the Gibson Recreation Building, (named for Charles Gibson, owner of Saratoga Lanes)
In the early 1950s this block of Donald was redeveloped. The Donalda Building opened in 1951 and the main floor became home to The Orchid Florists. The 'Gibson Recreation Building' or Saratoga Amusements Building was christened at 316 Donald Street. The new address appears to have been a combination of two existing buildings with retail to the south and the bowling lanes to the north.
The joined buildings were extensively rebuilt after an April 15, 1956 blaze gutted the lanes and destroyed an adjoining furrier and Fraser Artists' Supply.
Pay 'n Save to the left, ca. 1960 (source)
In 1956 new tenants moved into the rebuilt block. There was, of course, a new Saratoga Lanes and on the retail side a Pay 'n Save Drugs with a cafeteria and barber shop inside.
Saratoga Lanes had a prominent position during the Golden Era of ten pin bowling in Manitoba, 1955 - 1070s.
On December 12th 1978 much of the building was destroyed when fire started in a hydro panel at 6:30 a.m.. The bowling alley (which by then was a 24 hour, 30 lane facility), Pay 'n Save and the Safety Restaurant were all razed.
In 1980 Saratoga Lanes reopened in the basement level at '320 Donald'. Bernie Britton's Saratoga Lanes became Saratoga Amusements in the mid - late 80s as new owners took over. Saratoga continued in the space until 1993-94.
Above, on the retail and office end, appears to have sat empty until 1983 when a federal government department "Canada Core Area Employment and Counselling Centre" opened. Since that time the space has remained with the federal government as in 1989 it became a Canada Employment Centre and in the late 90s the Public Service Commission of Canada. It is the sole tenant of the building.
In 1984 another fire caused about $80,000 in damage which, I believe, is when the facade of the building was refaced. I presume it is around that time the the building was "Dedicated in memory of my mother Maidie Surtees Ostrom" as per the plaque out front.
I could not find details on the Surtees' or of Maidie.
The building was recently up for sale noting that the empty bowling space still sits in the basement.