What is the Streetsville Heritage Conservation District (HCD) Feasibility Study Project?
The purpose of the Streetsville HCD Feasibility Study is to determine whether or not the community of Streetsville (as per the study area boundary) meets the legislated criteria for designation under the Ontario Heritage Act. The project will be carried out in two phases. The first phase of the project undertakes background research and determines whether or not the area is a good candidate for designation as a Heritage Conservation District under Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act. If the City of Mississauga Council proceeds to the second phase of the project, a draft Heritage Conservation District Plan would be drafted which provides policies and guidelines for change management.
What is a Heritage Conservation District (HCD)?
A Heritage Conservation District is a defined geographical area within a municipality protected through a By-law registered on the title of every property within the boundary. The purpose of an HCD is to ensure that the community's character and sense of place are conserved and enhanced. The character of an area can be defined by factors, including (but not limited to) natural features such as mature trees and landforms, streets and boulevards, land use patterns, setbacks, architectural character, etc. The designation of an area as an HCD does not prohibit change. Instead, the area is managed through an HCD Plan which includes policies and guidelines for change management.
What is a Heritage Conservation District Plan?
The Ontario Heritage Act identifies that all Heritage Conservation Districts (HCDs) must be managed through a Heritage Conservation District Plan. A district plan includes a description and rationale for the identified geographical boundaries of an HCD, its overall character, heritage attributes as well as its relationship with current municipal land-use planning policies. A district plan describes why the HCD is of Cultural Heritage Value or Interest. It also provides guidelines on how best to conserve and protect identified cultural heritage attributes, and to guide future changes in the district. For example, a district plan provides policies and guidelines for appropriate alterations to heritage properties as well as compatible new development. Overall, the policies and guidelines contained in a district plan will help to protect and enhance the area’s special character. Each HCD Plan is different. It is able to adopt policies and guidelines which are tailored to an area’s needs. HCD Plans can be more or less restrictive, depending on the needs of the community and the overall approach to conservation.
Are there other Heritage Conservation Districts (HCDs) in Ontario and Mississauga?
Yes. The Ontario Heritage Trust maintains an active Register of Heritage Conservation Districts which is in force and effect in Ontario: https://www.heritagetrust.on.ca/pages/tools/ontario-heritage-act-register
Currently, two designated Heritage Conservation Districts exist in the City of Mississauga. The Meadowvale Village Heritage Conservation District was designated in 1980, and updated in 2014. The Old Port Credit Village Heritage Conservation District was designated in 2004, and updated in 2018.
What is the role of Municipal Official Plans in relation to Heritage Conservation Districts?
The City of Mississauga Official Plan provides the land-use planning policy framework for the entire municipality. The Official Plan provides the municipality with authority to protect cultural heritage resources. Official Plans are accompanied by a Zoning By-law which controls the use of land in a community, where buildings can be located, and how they can be used. The City of Mississauga Official Plan and Zoning By-law does not include policies that are intended to manage the conservation of cultural heritage resources and a unique sense of place in Streetsville. If designated, the Streetsville HCD Plan would serve as a document that works in cooperation with the Official Plan and Zoning By-law. An HCD Plan can also recommend amendments to the Official Plan and Zoning By-law.
My property is already designated under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act. Can it be designated again?
Yes. If your property is designated under Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act, it can also be designated under Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act as part of a Heritage Conservation District as well. The HCD Plan as well as the Part IV designation By-law guide changes to these designated properties.
What are some Incentives of Designation offered by the City of Mississauga?
Municipal incentive programs vary across the Province of Ontario. Depending on the municipality, there may be grants, loans, and/or tax relief available that function as incentives to encourage property owners to designate their buildings and sites. Currently, the City of Mississauga offers the Designated Heritage Property Grant Program. To be eligible for the program, properties must be designated under the Ontario Heritage Act. Applicants can request a maximum of $5,000.00 for general conservation work, $10,000 for structural work, and $25,000 for special projects. For program details, visit here.
Does designation under the Ontario Heritage Act affect Property Values?
Heritage Conservation Districts have been successfully operating in Ontario since 1980. Designation under the Ontario Heritage Act has not been shown to adversely affect property values either individually, or collectively as a District. Studies conducted by the Heritage Resources Centre at the University of Waterloo have identified that designation does not cause property values to decline. Instead, property values are either unaffected or rise. This is often attributed to the fact that the conservation of the character of the area means these areas are more attractive and stable.
Will Designation under the Ontario Heritage Act mean that I have to change my Property?
No. The designation does not force any property owner to make changes to their property. However, when certain levels of change are proposed, an owner may require approval by way of the Heritage Permit Approval Process. This includes the construction of new buildings and additions (for example) to ensure that they do not result in adverse impacts to the character of the area.
Does Designation under the Ontario Heritage Act prohibit or restrict the changes I can make to my Property?
Designation under the Ontario Heritage Act does not prohibit change. The intent is to conserve the character of the area which is visible from the public realm. Heritage Conservation District (HCD) designation does not restrict changes a property owner can make to the interior of buildings. Certain levels of change that have the ability to adversely impact the character of the area require approval by way of the Heritage Permit Application Process. Heritage Permit Applications are free and are reviewed by Heritage Planning Staff at the City of Mississauga to ensure that the proposed change is consistent with the policies of the HCD Plan. The Permit is considered by the Municipal Heritage Advisory Committee, which makes a recommendation to Council on whether or not the Permit should be approved. It takes approximately 6 weeks for a permit to go through the process within the City of Mississauga and 9 weeks when there is an optional local review subcommittee. Permits for new construction take slightly longer as Council approval is required.
My House isn’t Old. Does this mean my property would still be part of the HCD?
An HCD designates all properties within its boundaries under the Ontario Heritage Act through a By-law which is registered on-title, including those which are not considered “heritage”. The HCD Plan identifies which properties are considered “heritage”, and which are “non-heritage”. The HCD Plan would provide a different set of policies for each type of property. The purpose of designating non-heritage properties is to ensure that changes to these properties are sensitive to, and compatible with the identified character of the area and do not have an adverse impact on the reasons for which the area is of cultural heritage value.
Does Designation Stop or Restrict the Selling of Property?
No. The designation does not prohibit the sale or transactions of property in the current manner.
Does Designation under the Ontario Heritage Act affect my Insurance Rates?
Heritage designation does not place any additional requirements on the insurer/insured and should not cause an increase in insurance premiums. However, other reasons may cause insurance companies to increase premiums on older properties due to things such as the level of risk (such as outdated wiring/electrical, for example). The Ministry of Multiculturalism and the Insurance Bureau of Canada have confirmed that insurance premiums should not go up as a result of designation under the Ontario Heritage Act. The Government of Ontario offers information on insurance premiums online at https://www.ontario.ca/page/heritage-properties-and-insurance
Who do I contact to get more information? How can I have my say?
Please email the City of Mississauga, at email@example.com for additional information.
Public Engagement is an important part of the HCD Process. Updates regarding the status of the project and upcoming Public Meetings will be posted on this website at yoursay.mississauga.ca/streetsville. The website also provides surveys and information sheets with resources for your information.