A few changes to Salmon Arm’s Community Heritage Register prompted a discussion of what owning a home on the city’s register means regarding future development.
At the city’s Feb. 20 planning meeting, Coun. Debbie Cannon, council’s representative on the Community Heritage Commission, said the work done was mainly housekeeping – but she made note of a couple of items.
One change was to Salmon Arm Elementary, now the Downtown Activity Centre, which is included on the list. Cannon said Deborah Chapman, curator at the Salmon Arm Museum, pointed out the school was actually named the Salmon Arm Consolidated High School when it was built.
The commission also looked at homes on the registry. It was decided the name that would follow the home is the name of the person who built and first lived in it.
Cannon said Hanna and Hanna Orchards was changed to Dodd/Hanna Orchards on the register. She said the Dodd family owned the property and, when the daughter married a Hanna, it continued as Hanna.
“Technically it wasn’t Hanna/Hanna Orchards,” she explained.
Coun. Chad Eliason said he wanted to ensure the difference between the provincial heritage designation and Salmon Arm’s heritage registry is clear to homeowners.
Staff said just three properties in Salmon Arm have a provincial heritage designation: the art gallery, the former seniors centre (which was the original city hall) across from the art gallery on Hudson, and Haney Heritage House in R.J. Haney Heritage Village & Museum. Those three are protected by bylaw, which properties on the city’s register are not.
The city’s heritage registry was described as an information list or guide, although council can delay demolition of a property on the list or, if council values the property, could potentially compensate the owner for it. However, it was pointed out the city has no money for purchasing properties so that was never the intent of the registry.
Eliason spoke about the formation of the registry after the McGuire house was demolished. He said he thinks the community reacted because people wanted to go in and document what was there and possibly make an arrangement with Haney to take artifacts if available “because it was a prominent house in a prominent location in Salmon Arm.”
He said “a quick sober second thought about it” to see what could have been done would have been useful.
Kevin Pearson, the city’s director of development services, explained the current process if an owner of a house on the city’s registry wanted a demolition permit.
“As soon as a demolition permit comes into city hall, we make an attempt to get it on the next regular council meeting. City council has various options. They can attempt to delay the demolition, attempt to designate with heritage status with the bylaw – doing that would require compensation to the owner, or they can let the demolition proceed,” Pearson said.
Eliason, a former owner of a house on the city’s registry, said he wanted to make sure it was clear to everyone the intent of the registry was and is not to encumber development.
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