News

BIA dares you to walk Queen St. alley
03-08-2013
Go ahead, take a walk through a downtown alleyway at night. The downtown Business Improvement Area isn't just daring you to, they're encouraging it.

That's because they are almost set to officially unveil Daredevil Alley, a walkway on the south side of Queen St.
Queen Street Park Grand Opening
09-29-2012
You are invited to attend the Grand Opening of the Queen Street Park and a ceremony to dedicate a Peace Garden commemorating the War of 1812. It all takes place on Wednesday, October 3, 2012 at 6:00pm at the Queen Street Park (next to City Hall).
Buskers entertain Queen St. visitors
09-05-2012
Niagara Falls’ first Buskerfest went off without a hitch, wrapping up Sunday and bringing in over 150 performances, vendors, special performances, and record breaking attempts for the Guinness Book of World Records to historic Queen Street. See Article.
Popular Queen St. restaurant to re-open next month
07-14-2012
NIAGARA FALLS – Paris Crepes Bistro, which closed abruptly in May despite being heralded as one of Queen Street's success stories, is set to re-open next month under a new name.Thierry Clement, one of the original owners of the popular Parisian-style eatery which opened in 2009, said Thursday the Paris Crepes Cafe will open in early August.
Lyndesfarne relocates to Niagara Falls
05-31-2012
Lyndesfarne Theatre Projects (LTP) proudly announces the relocation of their theatre company to the Seneca Queen Theatre (circa 1940), located at 4624 Queen Street in downtown Niagara Falls, Ontario. After seven years of producing theatre in St. Catharines, LTP will now make its home in the historic 330 seat theatre in the revitalized Queen Street arts district.
Cupolo Sports heading downtown
03-22-2012
NIAGARA FALLS - Cupolo Sports, which is celebrating 100 years of business in 2012, is moving. Owner Jerry Cupolo, whose uncle Charlie opened the store in 1912, said Monday the store is moving to a new location at 4554 Queen St. It’s expected to reopen April 15.
Acquisition of Historic Niagara
03-22-2012
On March 26 2012, Keefer Developments Ltd. (KDL) successfully completed the acquisition of the real estate portfolio formerly known as Historic Niagara Development Inc.

The portfolio including more than 40 sites holds approximately 200,000 sq. feet of retail and office space and 60 living units.
Buskerfest Niagara in downtown Niagara Falls
05-31-2012
Amid the historic and funky shops and restaurants on Queen Street in Niagara Falls, Buskerfest Niagara comes to life at the end of August. From Friday, August 31 - Sunday, September 2, 2012, Buskerfest Niagara will bring acts from around the world showcasing three days of colourful street performances by more than 20 world-class talented buskers.
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Contact Information

  • Address:
    Keefer Developments Ltd.
    4605 Crysler Avenue. Unit 4
    Niagara Falls Ontario Canada
    L2E 3V6
  • Telephone: 905-353-9555
  • Fax: (905) 353-1855
  • Commercial Sales and Leasing:
    Phil Ritchie
  • Residential Apartments:
    Theresa Cotton

Queen St. Village Apartments

KDL is currently completing a 30 unit mixed, adaptive reuse project at 4410 Queen St. After sitting abandoned for a number of years, the former GayBrothers Bakery has been expanded and will become a major living centre forthe Queen St. district.

The building will open to residents 55+ during the fall of 2012.
The non-smoking building will also incorporate an elevator, and numerous green technology elements to increase the sustainability of the site.



The Bakery - Gay Brothers Bakery Legacy

by James Kershaw

I dare say that every family must have a story that's interesting and cohesive for its members and even to the public as well (if they only knew). Not only a way to understand ourselves and our connections, the study of genealogy is also important for families in order that medical personnel may understand how diseases are passed along the blood line. We had an aunt who used to keep tract of all our family ancestors. She would have some uncanny knowledge of everyone. Where she got it from I'll never know. When we'd meet for family picnics she'd appear out of nowhere and start chatting about everybody's business. I'd feel a little nervous thinking she might expose my latest prank. As things panned out she was just a dear soul who cared enough to take a keen interest in our family life.

At this time it seems my family roots are more exposed than in my early days but does that just mean I've become more aware of them as community events transpire around me? Though I'm not the designated historian for my family, lately these events caused me to stumble upon some history.

My mom (Marjorie) is the last surviving second generation Gay and she shared a few details about the site of the former Gay Brothers Bakery on Queen St. in Niagara Falls, Canada. Hidden from me over the years in a sea of circumstances I discovered its exact location in the downtown area.  Presently Mother lives at a seniors' residence and she mentioned that as a kid she’d ride in her father's (Charles dob. 1887) "puddle-jumper" while he delivered bread. In 1909 Gay Brothers Bakery was selling pies at ten cents each and a year later sold a "double size loaf” of Holsum Bread for ten cents. In 1914 Gay’s "Eatmore Bread” was seven cents/loaf. Charles was an employee and two of his brothers owned the Queen St. establishment. They were: Robert, who was the business manager and David, who managed the day to day operations.  The fourth brother, William owned a bakery in Niagara Falls, New York. Charles met his bride, Hazel (dob. 1890), also an employee, at the bakery.  In the 40’s they sold Carmel squares and had an ice cream parlor on the main floor facing Queen St. The ovens were also on the main floor.  At one point for health reasons they started to wrap the loaves with waxed paper so Charles got sign restorationthe job of setting up the wrapping machine and performing the bread wrapping duties. Horses were used at first until they started with motorized carriages.  Competition from Hares Bakery (What a name for a food company!) nearby and later Moody's Bakery kept everyone busy.

The bakery closed sometime in the 50’s after becoming no longer profitable. Vacant for many years finally in 2012 restoration was completed by Phil Ritchie of Keefer Developments Ltd. He added another floor at the back and kept the building's exterior in its original exposed brick condition. Transforming the three floor structure into an apartment complex it was named Queen St. Village Apartments. He even had the original Gay Brothers Bakery sign painted up above on the brick. A "good path" for the Downtown core Ritchie envisions a living, shopping and people place with a rich history.

"Images of a Century", the City of Niagara Falls, Canada, 1904-2004, The City of Niagara Falls Centennial Book Committee