Shortly after the turn of the century, Canadian Pacific Railway decided that a major repair facility should be established in the West, in addition to the exisiting repair shops at Montreal and Winnipeg. Because of the close proximities to the major travel routes such as the Trans-Canada highway and the meeting of the two major rivers, the Bow and Elbow, Calgary was chosen.
Construction of the Ogden Shops started in May of 1911 and for the next 11 months, a work force of as many as 5,000 swarmed over the site. In less than a year after the first sod was turned, the new shops were ready to roll. In March 1912,Ogden Shops were formally opened and named for I.G. Ogden,Vice-President. During the First World War, the years of prosperity and depression, Ogden repaired steam locomotives, freight and passenger cars. The staff that had peaked at just over 1400 men slowly dwindled to 600 during the worst of the Depression and these employees only worked 10 days each month.