St. Amant Centre

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St. Amant Centre
Construction Began 1930
Opened 1931
Current Status Active
Building Style Single Building
Architect(s) John Nelson Semmens
Location Winnipeg, MB
Alternate Names
  • St. Vital Tuberculosis Sanatorium
  • St. Boniface Sanatorium


The institution now known as the St. Amant Centre was founded in 1931 by the Grey Nuns as the St. Boniface Sanatorium. In 1959, it became a home for disabled children. Prior to this, there was no institution for disabled children aged 6 and under. The institution was named the St. Amant Centre after Beatrice St. Amant, a mother of an epileptic child, who was unable to find a facility to care for her son. The campus consisted of three structures made of brick, concrete, and Tyndall stone. The four-storey main building was laid out in an “H” pattern with ground-level space in both the south and west wings allotted to patients, thereby affording them the most access to sunlight. Staff and service rooms occupied the northern side of the structure. The first floor central area contained administration quarters and a chapel. On the second and third floors were diagnostic equipment and examination rooms, with the fourth floor containing an auditorium and accommodation for sun treatment sessions. This structure was connected via tunnels to the two-storey Children’s Pavilion (containing 50 of the 250-bed total), and a service building that housed laundry services, the powerhouse, and male staff quarters. The Sanatorium was operated under the auspices of the Grey Nuns of St. Boniface, known formally by their incorporated name of “Les Soeurs de la Charite” (Sisters of Charity).

St. Amant has become the largest community living service in Manitoba supporting people with disabilities and their families. The St. Amant Research Centre has partnered with the University of Manitoba in order to improve the quality of life of those living with disabilities. Similar to the Manitoba Developmental Centre, this institution has also received criticism from disability advocates. While the institution has 54 community residences, there are still approximately 200 people living at the site.