If you are a property owner within a Heritage Conservation District boundary in Innisfil or your property is an individually designated Heritage Building and you would like to make exterior renovations to your building, we encourage you to first contact us before your project begins to determine if any work requires a Heritage Alteration Permit.

The permit process is not intended to prevent new construction or additions to an existing building. Property owners can also introduce modern requirements, such as:

  • Air conditioning
  • Garages
  • Satellite dishes
  • Wheelchair ramps
  • Modern interior treatments that do not diminish the heritage value of the property

Apply for a Heritage Alteration Permit

To apply for a permit, review and complete our Heritage Alteration Permit Application Form and contact us by email at heritage@innisfil.ca to book a pre-consultation meeting and submit your form. 

When a permit is required

A permit may be required when undertaking exterior renovations of a Heritage property to help ensure that any alterations are complimentary to the existing heritage attributes of the home and neighbourhood. Heritage attributes can include items such as materials, details, spatial configurations, historical associations and character-defining elements that collectively contribute to the property's heritage value. Contact us to if you are unsure whether your work requires a Heritage Alteration Permit.

Minor work and major work

The Cookstown Heritage Conservation District Plan and Design Guidelines (p. 45) outlines what type of work requires a Minor Heritage Alteration Permit and what type of work requires a Major Heritage Alteration Permit.

Minor permit applications are reviewed and approved by staff by the approval authority delegated by Council. If dissatisfied with the decision, property owners can request that the application be reviewed and approved by Council.

Major permit applications are reviewed by staff and forwarded to Council for final approval. In cases where demolition or the removal of structures within the Heritage Conservation District area is proposed, the application is sent to the Innisfil Heritage Advisory Committee for their recommendation before Council makes a decision.

Work that does not require a Heritage Alteration Permit

  • All types of exterior re-painting of previously painted surfaces
  • Alterations at the rear of the building not visible from the street
  • General maintenance and repairs with the same materials
  • Interior renovation
  • Minor landscaping and gardening
  • Paving or re-paving an existing driveway
  • Regular maintenance items such as replacing roof shingles with the same type of shingle
  • Small rear yard outbuildings (under 10 square-metres), standalone garages or outbuildings (subject to zoning regulations)

Approval process

We prioritize timely processing of Heritage Alteration Permit applications. Minor applications that meet heritage guidelines are reviewed and approved by staff. For some applications that have met guidelines, approval may be given on the same day the application is submitted. View our application process chart for more information.

Approval of a Heritage Alteration Permit must precede any other municipal approval, including those related to building permits, site plans and minor variances.

Supporting documents

Depending on the type of work proposed, you may be required to submit supporting documents for your application. We will advise you if this is necessary during your pre-consultation meeting. This could include:

  • Drawings: Architectural drawings should clearly illustrate all proposed changes to the structure
  • Site plans: Plans should show existing and proposed structures and additions on the lot, setbacks from front, rear and side lot lines, demolition of exiting site features and location of proposed site features
  • Photographs: Photos showing the front of the property and its main structure; nearby streetscape and neighbouring properties; and any other relevant portions of the property and structures
  • Samples of proposed materials: Samples may be physical or visual (such as a brochure)

We recommend retaining the services of an experienced designer/architect for larger alterations and/or experienced heritage contractors.