Preserving Lethbridge’s history was emphasized Monday as City Councillors reviewed the process for preserving historic buildings and gave approval for three residential sites to work towards a Municipal Historic Resource Designation. This designation is given to buildings, sites, and cultural landscapes that have historic significance and ensures they are protected by the City of Lethbridge.
The Buchanan residence (1404 4 Ave. S), Collier’s House (704-13 St. S) and the Watson residence (323-14 St. S) all hold significance in the city’s history and as such, are slated to move through the process of becoming a Municipal Historic Resource.
“Without a concentrated effort to protect and preserve our historic resources, we’re in danger of losing the important stories and valuable piece of our city’s identity,” says Mayor Chris Spearman.
The Historic Places Advisory Committee (HPAC) presented Council with an overview of the municipal designation process. HPAC was created in 2007 and advises council on potential historic resources, provides feedback on related bylaws and works to develop a proactive heritage presence in the community.
Once a site is designated, HPAC works with the property owner to install a plaque. Any future work owners wish to complete on their home must be approved in order to meet conservation standards and guidelines. Once designated, they may also be able to access grant funding for the preservation of their property.
“We recognize how important this initiative is and that we couldn’t do it without the cooperation of the property owners,” says Deputy Mayor Bridget Mearns. “Although there is a process to get through yet, we are thankful that these individuals are willing to work with us to conserve and maintain their magnificent homes.”
The City of Lethbridge currently has 16 Municipally Designated Historic Sites and 14 Provincially Designated Historic Site. For more information and to view Lethbridge’s historic sites visit: http://www.lethbridge.ca/historicbuildings.