One of the first actions of Calgary's new town council, elected in December 1884, was to commission the construction of a town hall. The two-storey structure housed a police office complete with jail cells, a council chamber, a clerk's office and a tiny courtroom.
The town hall was often described as a "cold and cheerless place," since it was not insulated and could not be kept warm in winter. In 1887, the town council moved temporarily into the newly constructed fire hall. Two years later, following a conflict with the overcrowded and disgruntled fire brigade, they were forced to move back into the town hall. The construction of a large sandstone city hall began in 1907, and the dilapidated town hall was condemned in 1911. A replica of the town hall as it looked in 1885 was built by Heritage Park in 2000.