April 30th, 2014 ~ Vol. 84 No. 17
Heritage Inventory Project moves ahead
Mayor Blair Painter
Robert Thomas photo
Mayor Blair Painter, makes his dot count. ‘Dotmocracy’ was the term used for people placing their votes on which sites should be considered important to the community.
Pass Herald Reporter
As the saying goes, “you don’t know what you got until it’s gone.” The Municipality of Crowsnest Pass and Community Design Strategies (CDS), are working together to determine which sites should be considered for formal municipal designation as historically significant.
Last Wednesday, April 23, in the Elks Hall in Blairmore, an open house was held to gather support from the community to better understand which properties should be considered.
This was the second stage of the Heritage Inventory Project, phase one was completed in 2013, and included buildings from the B.C border to Coleman. Phase two includes Blairmore and Frank, another phase will be conducted in the future for Hillcrest and Bellevue.
Merinda Conley, Principal of CDS, said the community needs historic buildings to be saved from integrity damaging alterations or developments.
“The Municipal Heritage Advisory Board has identified a number of places of interest that they feel could very well have great significance to this community. Therefore they should be considered for placement on the heritage inventory.”
Both groups have identified 64 commercial and residential properties for further research and examination. The open house was planned to gather more information on the buildings and assist with creating a short list of properties.
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“We are asking the public to come in and help provide us with information on these sites. They might know who lived there, who the architect was, or the craftsman involved and then share with us why they feel a building is valued, why should it be protected,” said Conley.
Every site had a photo and an area for people to write down information relating to the structure. There were also red dots that people could place on the posters to ‘vote’ on the addition of that site to the short list.
“If people feel strongly about the site, they could then take these red dots, it’s called ‘dotmocracy’ and identify on the individual posters which sites they feel need to be protected and eventually included in this inventory. This is step one,” said Conley.
Rebecca Goodenough, Municipal Heritage Service Officer, said it is up to the community to decide how many sites will be designated.
“It is the communities’ decision, typically an inventory project like this can bite off about 30 to 35 sites. I know that the Crowsnest Pass, because of how large it is, they are doing it in three phases. We completed phase one last year, and they had about thirtyish sites in that one,” said Goodenough.
There are still five more processes to go through before any sites become designated as Heritage Sites.
A Statement of Significance has to be written, Council has to consider designation, then issue the property owner a Notice of Intention(NOI). Council then advertises the NOI, and then a 60 day waiting period allowing the owner to review all paperwork.
April 30th ~ Vol. 84 No. 17
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