Report: Village Square Unique

An independent study of Village Square has concluded that while the entire site isn’t worthy of heritage designation, there are aspects of the square that should be preserved if the site is redeveloped.

These include:

  • Retain the tower building in situ (LCBO);
  • Retain the Village Square signage currently on the tower building;
  • Accommodate for mid-block pedestrian routes through any new development;
  • Retain and support fine grain retail presence on Elizabeth, Pine and Pearl Streets;
  • Retain existing heritage properties at 416 Pearl Street, 415-417 Elizabeth Street and 423 Elizabeth Street; and
  • Introduce infill development on subject block that is complementary to the character of heritage buildings identified above.

The consultant further recommended exploring the possibility of designating the buildings at 416 Pearl St, 415-417 and 423 Elizabeth Street under Part IV of theOntario Heritage Act to ensure any significant alterations and/or proposed demolition of structures at Village Square would go through a heritage permit process.

Any development on the site, said the consultant, should be required to demonstrate that the overall impact should not significantly impact the heritage value of Village Square, and should respect the overall form and massing of the listed heritage buildings, with compatible materials, detailing, and residential character.

Staff agrees with the opinion of the heritage consultant that there are elements of the Village Square development that could be considered significant to the character of the site, but that the Square as a whole doesn’t warrant heritage designation.

The report is simply for information; a copy will also be circulated to the property owners.

Read the report here:

My Take: I welcome the detail in the consultants report on the aspects of the Square that should be preserved during any redevelopment. This is a special site to residents of the entire city, and I’ll work to preserve it as a unique gem in the heart of Burlington.

Written by Marianne Meed Ward

A Better Burlington began in 2006 after my neighbours said they felt left out of city decisions, learning about them only after they’d been made.

As journalist for 22 years, I thought “I can do something about that” and a website and newsletter were born. They’ve taken various forms and names over the years, but the intent remains: To let you know what’s happening at City Hall before decisions are made, so you can influence outcomes for A Better Burlington.

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