Character Houses Get Reprieve from the Bulldozer

June 11, 2014

The City of Vancouver has introduced a plan to protect pre-1940s houses with heritage value. The proposed rules will replace old rules that allow for new structures that take up a larger percentage of the property.

In some areas of Vancouver's west side, a Sold sign almost inevitably means a demolition, followed by a much larger house on the lot. As a result, these areas are losing the older homes that give them their character.

So far this year there have been nearly 1,000 applications to demolish existing single-family houses in Vancouver.

The new rules apply to Shaughnessy, Kerrisdale, Dunbar, MacKenzie Heights, Arbutus Ridge and some parts of Kitsilano. They encourage home owners to retain older homes by allowing additions and making upgrades easier. They also discourage teardowns by requiring increased reuse and recycling of the materials, and by limiting the size of the new structure.

Read more:

Globe and Mail: Vancouver Aims to Slow Rate of Heritage House Demolitions

Vancouver Sun: Vancouver Moves to Slow Down Demolition of Character Homes