Ward 14 - 2018 London Municipal Election Candidate Survey

ACO Heritage Matters.jpg

Architectural Conservancy Ontario - London Region (ACO London) sent an online survey on heritage issues to candidates running for City Council in the upcoming municipal election. The survey asked candidates about their thoughts on issues such as heritage conservation, ‘demolition by neglect’, and adaptive re-use of older buildings. This is the second time ACO London has surveyed local municipal election candidates, the first was for the 2014 election.

Responses received: Allan Tipping, Jared Zaifman
No response received: Steven Hillier, Annette Swalwell


Allan Tipping

Would you consider designating a property with heritage or cultural value against the owner’s wishes? Do you support municipal property tax breaks for heritage properties? Do you support financial assistance and advice to those who seek to conserve, restore, and maintain their heritage properties? Do you support funding, by-laws, and policies that encourage heritage conservation? Please specify any initiatives that you would propose.

1- yes I would
2- yes I do
3- no I do not, the public is taxed enough
4- policies yes

How would you deal with the issue of ‘demolition by neglect’? Are you in favour of the City enforcing property and building standards for all heritage structures, including allowing city by-law inspectors to legally enter empty buildings on a frequent and regular basis to ensure that property and building standards are being upheld? Would you support issuing fines to property owners and developers who allow buildings to be destroyed by non-accidental fire, illegal demolition, or other acts of negligent destruction? Do you agree London should adopt a Heritage Building Protection Plan initiative such as other municipalities have implemented that would require property owners and developers to submit and implement plans to maintain and secure heritage structures throughout development approval processes?

1- if a property is deemed heritage then it is the property owners responsibility to maintain it.if it is not too code then the city will do it and bill the land owner by taxes
2- yes
3- yes
4- yes

How would you balance development pressures against the community’s desire to conserve heritage structures and neighbourhoods? How would you encourage the adaptive reuse of London’s built heritage when its original uses are no longer feasible? Do you support, in principle, neighbourhood-specific moratoriums on demolitions while an area is being studied as a potential Heritage Conservation District?

1- their is already a path to follow
3- the front must be kept original in design, and they can rebuild the back
4- no

What steps would you champion as a member of Council to ensure that the London Plan’s provisions to protect heritage properties along the BRT routes are implemented?

STOP BRT

Do you plan to incorporate built heritage issues into your campaign platform? How? Please include any additional comments you would like to share.

No


Jared Zaifman

Would you consider designating a property with heritage or cultural value against the owner’s wishes? Do you support municipal property tax breaks for heritage properties? Do you support financial assistance and advice to those who seek to conserve, restore, and maintain their heritage properties? Do you support funding, by-laws, and policies that encourage heritage conservation? Please specify any initiatives that you would propose.

I would and have considered designating a property over the owners wishes but I have also done the opposite. I am generally supportive of financial incentives to assist those looking to restore heritage buildings however I think there has to be a limit as heritage can be incredibly expensive. One quick example is a decision by the provincial body overseeing heritage for us to invest an additional ~$2 million dollars into the Normal School. While the end result has been the repurposing of a great community building, the costs were thrust directly on the taxpayers of London with no help from the Province.

How would you deal with the issue of ‘demolition by neglect’? Are you in favour of the City enforcing property and building standards for all heritage structures, including allowing city by-law inspectors to legally enter empty buildings on a frequent and regular basis to ensure that property and building standards are being upheld? Would you support issuing fines to property owners and developers who allow buildings to be destroyed by non-accidental fire, illegal demolition, or other acts of negligent destruction? Do you agree London should adopt a Heritage Building Protection Plan initiative such as other municipalities have implemented that would require property owners and developers to submit and implement plans to maintain and secure heritage structures throughout development approval processes?

I would support more frequent inspections of empty heritage buildings to have updated assessments of the buildings. It is one thing to designate but if the status is not regularly updated it is likely more buildings will deteriorate.

Fines for allowing buildings to be destroyed by non-accidental fire, illegal demolition, or other acts of negligent destruction may be useful if the funds are specifically directed to a reserve fund to assist with the maintenance or repurposing of other heritage buildings.

I am curious to hear from developers about the idea of heritage building protection plans. While there could certainly be merit in the idea, I wonder if the end result would be scaring off people from purchasing the buildings at all which would then result potentially in more heritage buildings being left to deteriorate. If assistance was provided by the city on this front there could be merit.

How would you balance development pressures against the community’s desire to conserve heritage structures and neighbourhoods? How would you encourage the adaptive reuse of London’s built heritage when its original uses are no longer feasible? Do you support, in principle, neighbourhood-specific moratoriums on demolitions while an area is being studied as a potential Heritage Conservation District?

There have been times over this term of council where I have supported the retaining of a heritage structure which has potentially slowed development and I have also supported demolition of heritage buildings where the arguments supporting its maintenance did not seem strong enough and there was good merit for significant infill.

What steps would you champion as a member of Council to ensure that the London Plan’s provisions to protect heritage properties along the BRT routes are implemented?

Every heritage property is different and would need to be individually assessed and addressed.

Do you plan to incorporate built heritage issues into your campaign platform? How? Please include any additional comments you would like to share.

No.


Thank you to those candidates who took the time to complete our survey. For those who did not respond before the survey closed, we welcome your comments.

We encourage all Londoners to attend candidates’ meetings and debates to learn more about their ideas and suggestions on built heritage and other issues. To find out more information about when and where to vote, and the candidates running for Mayor or Councillor visit the City of London’s Elections webpage.

Shawn Adamsson