Heritage home leave carving detail

If you want to make changes to a designated property, you will be required to submit a Heritage Approvals Application under the Ontario Heritage Act. A property can be designated individually as part of the heritage registry or as part of a heritage conservation district.

Heritage Approvals Application General Information

Why do I need a Heritage Approvals Application?

Heritage Approval is required to undertake changes to designated properties because of their historic or architectural significance under the Ontario Heritage Act. Properties are either designated individually under Part IV of the Act or are designated within a Heritage Conservation District under Part V of the Act.

A designated property is defined in the Act as real property and includes all buildings and structures on the real property not just the building façade. The Ontario Heritage Act outlines the process by which it is ensured, that any changes to a designated property do not alter the property in such a way that the reasons for designation are diminished.

Internal changes to a building on a designated property do not normally require a Heritage Approval if the alterations do not affect the external appearance of the designated property. An exception to this is individually designated properties whose designation By-law outlines specific interior or exterior elements to be preserved.

This process is not designed to prevent alterations to heritage buildings, but to guide change in the best way possible, considering heritage attributes that might be impacted.

When is a Heritage Approvals Application required?

There are two types of Heritage Approvals Applications:
  1. Heritage Structure Approval - construction, additions, alterations, demolition, new colours, new windows, doors, lighting, brick work and all applicable exteriors including roofs.
  2. Heritage Sign Approval - construction, location, alteration, dimensions, colours, lighting and fonts of signs and lettering.

Heritage Approvals Application

Is there a fee for the Heritage Approvals Application?

There is no fee for a Heritage Approvals Application.

Heritage Advisory Committee

The Heritage Advisory Committee meets every third Monday of the month, unless there is a holiday in which then the meeting gets pushed to the following Monday.

Chair: Karen O’Hara

Vice Chair: Marie Jones

Treasurer: Gord Thompson

Part IV Chair: Patricia Doney

Part V Chair: Marie Jones

Staff Reps: Tom Dodds, Director of Community Development and Sonia Tam, Heritage Planner

Council Rep: Les Andrews

Recording Secretary: Rebecca Dahle

Do all Heritage Approvals Applications need to be reviewed by the Heritage Advisory Committee?

On November 19, 2019, the Council of the Corporation of the Municipality of Port Hope passed By-law 75/2019 delegating certain powers and duties to various departments and committees. In the case of the Heritage Alterations Applications, Council delegated to the Planning Manager and registered Professional Planner and/or Delegate the following classes of alterations to designated heritage properties pursuant to sec. 33 and 42 of the Ontario Heritage Act:
  • Paint colours
  • Signs
  • Awnings
  • Brick Repair/ Repointing

All other alterations to designated heritage properties require consultation with the Heritage Advisory Committee.

Do I need to apply for a Building Permit after receiving approval for my proposed alteration?

Applicants are requested to confirm their plans with Building Services to determine if a Building Permit is required. Building or Sign Permits will not be issued by the Building Division for designated properties before Heritage Approval is obtained.

Please note that a Heritage Approvals Application does not supersede the requirements of the Ontario Building Code, the Municipal Act, or the Planning Act and all other applicable law.

Heritage Approvals Application Process

Step 1: Consult with the Planning Division

It is recommended that the applicant consult with the Planning Division prior to submitting an application. The Heritage Advisory Committee members, through staff, can be available to advise and make site visits prior to the submission of an application.

Step 2: Submit Application

Please complete the Heritage Approvals Application and submit it to the Planning Division.

All applications must be submitted by 4:30 p.m. on the second Monday of the month (one week prior to the meeting) in order to be reviewed by the Heritage Advisory Committee.

Heritage Approvals Application

Step 3: Application Review

Applications will be reviewed by the Planner to ensure it is complete. If the application is incomplete, it will be returned to the applicant with notes. Once an application is deemed complete, it will be reviewed by the Heritage Advisory Committee at the monthly meeting.

Step 4: Attend Heritage Advisory Committee Meeting

At the earliest meeting of the Heritage Advisory Committee, the Committee will either recommend approval or refusal of the application. The meetings are held every third Monday of the month unless there is a holiday in which case it gets pushed to the following Monday.

Applicants are strongly recommended to attend the Committee meeting to take part in the review process and address questions and/ or concerns of the Committee.

Step 5: Application is Approved/Denied

Once an application is recommended for approval, the applicant may proceed with their proposal and if applicable, apply for a Building Permit.

If the Committee recommends denial, the applicant can elect to appeal the Committee’s decision to Council. Planning staff will assist with the appeal process of an application recommended for denial.