The Town of Innisfil is a community rich in cultural heritage; and it’s our responsibility to conserve and protect what we’ve inherited from the past – for the benefit of the present and the future.
Municipal Heritage Register
Section 27 of the Ontario Heritage Act (the ‘Act’) requires the clerk of every municipality to keep a publicly accessible register of properties that are of cultural heritage value or interest situated in the municipality. This is referred to as the Municipal Heritage Register.
The Municipal Heritage Register must list all properties in the municipality that are:
- Designated under Part IV (individual property designation)
- Non-designated properties of cultural heritage value or interest referred to as ‘Listed Properties’.
- Designated under Part V (within a designated heritage conservation district)
Designated Heritage Properties
Under Section 29 of the Act, Council may pass by-laws to formally designate properties of cultural heritage value or interest. Formal designation allows the municipality to acknowledge a property’s heritage value and its significance to the identity of the community. Formally designating a property also helps to ensure the conservation of its identified heritage elements for the benefit of present and future generations. The Innisfil Heritage Advisory Committee utilizes guidelines from the Act to advise Council about heritage designation.
Further information on designated properties:
- Town of Innisfil’s Heritage Property Tax Rebate Program
- Learn more about the Cookstown Heritage Conservation District
- Cookstown Heritage District Plan and Design Guidelines
- Heritage Designation – Information for Property Owners (coming soon!)
- Learn more about Innisfil’s Designated Properties (coming soon!)
Non-Designated Properties of Cultural Heritage Value or Interest (‘Listed Properties’)
Under Section 27 of the Act, municipalities are also allowed to include properties of cultural heritage value or interest that have not been designated in its municipal register. Listing is a means to formally identify properties that may have cultural heritage value or interest to the community. It is an important tool in planning for their conservation and provides a measure of interim protection.
Owners of listed properties must give the council of the municipality at least 60 days’ notice of their intention to demolish or remove a building or structure on the property. This allows time for the municipality to decide whether to begin the designation process to give long term protection to the property. No other obligations are placed on the property owner.
Myths of Heritage Designation
A common myth concerning heritage designation is that it has a negative impact on the property owner and restricts the use of the property. This is not the case. For example, a heritage designation does not:
- Impose restrictions, obligations, or expenses beyond those of any property owner.
- Prevent alterations or expansions to a building as long as they complement the heritage attributes.
- Include interior spaces.
- Adversely affect property values
- Result in a higher insurance premium
- Restrict the use of the property.
- Require an owner to restore lost or damaged features or a property.