Burlington adds 18 buildings to Heritage Register while cultural study takes place

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Published September 26, 2022 at 10:57 am

The City of Burlington added 18 downtown buildings to the Heritage Register.

Eighteen downtown properties were added to the City of Burlington’s Heritage Register at last week’s city council meeting.

A decision on another six was delayed until December 13, enough time for staff to consult with property owners.

“Our Heritage Register is the best tool we have to protect buildings from demolition while we embark on the Cultural Heritage Landscape Study that will unfold over the next year,” said Burlington Mayor Marianne Meed Ward.

Putting a property on the registry protects it from demolition for 60 days while the city has an opportunity to study its heritage value. If no heritage value is the determination, the property is removed from the registry. Giving it a Heritage Designation will protect the exterior of the building from alteration or being demolished.

Owners are often opposed to having their properties listed as it can affect the value because they can’t be torn down to make way for new developments.

“The concerns of current property owners must be considered alongside our obligation under the Municipal Act and our own Official Plan to protect and preserve heritage for future generations. The current owners of any given property haven’t always owned it, and won’t own it forever, and our role is to ensure that heritage assets are not lost on our watch for the future of our community,” said Meed Ward.

“According to our staff, we have already lost 33 buildings in the downtown area in the last 10 years, properties that were once on the registry, and two more came forward this week expressing a desire to demolish. We don’t want to lose any more buildings while we undergo the study unfolding over the next year.”

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