Letter to culture minister Aileen Carroll


Aileen Carroll

Aileen Carroll

As I watched question period,you rose and spoke about the Ontario Heritage Trust,in response to
another members question,regarding former premiers.You stated that you value the input of the OHT,and that they have been a great asset to the ministry of culture.I have to ask why you did not value their opinion with regards to Alma College.The OHT reported to the culture ministry,that Alma College was indeed eligible for provincial designation,but you ignored the report,and the end result was,the college being set ablaze,and lost forever. I’m not sure of the all the rules & regulations in your ministry,but I find it very suspicious that you ignored Alma College,when it was listed as the number one endangered building in Canada,you hid the OHT report,as thousands of Alma College supporters were gathering petition signatures,and even though 2 buildings survived the inferno,at 96 Moore Street,you have failed to designate the property.The Alma supporters thought for sure,that once you had seen the devastation that was brought to this property,you would move immediately to protect what remained,but again we were mistaken.The Ministry of Culture seems to be unaware,of the “demolition by neglect” that is spreading across this beautiful province.Owners of historic buildings now know,if they simply let enough time go by,the culture ministry will never step in,and city’s cannot help protect these historic buildings,without government assistance,so its a waiting game,of which the owner will win every time.It’s very sad to see so many buildings abandoned and neglected.It’s true they built these structures to last,and in most cases they withstood the hands of time,what they couldn’t withstand,was the hand of Aileen Carroll…

Robert F.Foster
Brampton,Ont

Accountability at city hall … $30,000 worth


Ian McCallum

Ian McCallum

It’s difficult to preach accountability at city hall when $30,000 of operational equipment, formerly housed at Northside Arena, has been destroyed or gone missing.
A year ago, council requested information on the whereabouts of equipment that had been earmarked for other city facilities and where the accountability lies for the disappearance of these items when Northside was decommissioned in 2005.
This past Monday, city director of parks and recreation Kent McVittie delivered his status report to council which suggests the city dropped the puck entirely on this one.
It appears there was a defined time-limit established for the city to retrieve items from the arena and once that expired, the contents of Northside reverted to the purchaser of the building.
“The time limit expired prior to the city retrieving all of the items that had been originally specified,” notes McVittie in his report, “and the building’s purchaser assumed ownership of all the contents.”
So, there you have it … city staff lose track of time and $30,000 flies out the window.
Continue reading

Speech from the Throne sets the stage for heritage tax credit, says the Heritage Canada Foundation


Ottawa, ON November 21, 2008 – This week’s Speech from the
Throne contained no direct references to heritage buildings. But
the emphasis on stimulating the economy, meeting pressing social
needs and tackling climate change is a perfect fit with the
Heritage Canada Foundation’s call for a federal tax credit to
stimulate investment in the rehabilitation of older buildings.
“Affordable housing, green building, economic renewal—old
buildings hold solutions for these big challenges,” said Natalie
Bull, executive director, speaking from HCF’s headquarters in
Ottawa. “The rehabilitation and re-use of old buildings reduces
waste, generates less carbon, creates more jobs than new
construction, revitalizes communities and attracts tourist dollars.”
The Heritage Canada Foundation has long promoted the introduction
of federal tax measures that would attract developers to invest in
existing buildings, and encourage homeowners to upgrade older
homes. In the United States, The Economic Recovery Tax Act of 1981
introduced heritage-friendly changes to the federal tax system
designed to stimulate the economy. The results are impressive: over
$25 billion in private investment in historic buildings—much of it
in urban neighbourhoods and commercial districts; over 60,000 units
of low and moderate income housing created; and an average of 45
new jobs per rehab project.
Created in 1973 as the National Trust for Canada, the Heritage
Canada Foundation is a national, membership-based, non profit
organization with a mandate to promote the preservation of
Canada’s historic buildings and places. Visit http://www.heritagecanada.org
For further information:
Carolyn Quinn, Director of Communications, cquinn@heritagecanada.org
Telephone: 613-237-1066 ext. 229; Cell: 613-797-7206