Notable early 1900s buildings, such as at 58 Wheatfield Road in Mimico, are ideal candidates for designation under the Ontario Heritage Act

A previous post is entitled:

Please send a letter of support before Wednesday, Feb. 27, 2019 meeting re: 58 Wheatfield Road, Mimico – Intent to Designate under Ontario Heritage Act

In a subsequent post, when I have time to complete it, I will speak about the history of land-use decision making in Mimico and other waterfront communities in more general terms.

My brief initial overview, developed in the context of a community-based project in support of designation of 58 Wheatfield Road as a heritage building, goes as follows:

I support the designation of 58 Wheatfield Road under the Ontario Heritage Act.

The City of Toronto staff report in favour of the designation is a valuable resource, which documents the heritage value of the property in question.

Mimico 20/20 Revitalization – Cultural Heritage Resource Assessment

An additional excellent source, which offers impressive evidence in support of the designation, is a May 25, 2012 document entitled Mimico 20/20 Revitalization – Cultural Heritage Resource Assessment prepared by URS Canada for Heritage Preservation Services at the City of Toronto planning department.

The above-noted document refers to the heritage attributes of 58 Wheatfield Road among other heritage properties in Mimico. The sources listed on pages 88-89 appear to be generally authoritative and solid.

It may be noted that multiple sources – such as architectural records, historical maps, and fire insurance plans – have been consulted. The documentation does not rely, by way of example, exclusively on the work of one or another amateur historian, whose capacity to verify and corroborate data (such as dates) may, on occasion, be limited.

I wish to refer, as well, to a document recently published by Heritage Toronto, entitled Changing the Narrative – State of Heritage Report 2019.

The above-noted document underlines three key points, that are directly relevant with regard to the solidly documented heritage properties related to 58 Wheatfield Road.

Social heritage is key element related to preservation of heritage buildings

First, the report emphasizes that heritage has to do with social heritage as well as building heritage. We are, that is, talking about people – the people who live in Mimico and in Toronto  – as well as about the buildings themselves. The Mimico 20/20 cultural heritage resource assessment, referred to above, positions 58 Wheatfield Road within a history involving human beings of a previous generation.

The narrative does not relate solely to physical structures. Buildings, such as the one at 58 Wheatfield Road, have served previous generations of Mimico residents. Such heritage buildings warrant being preserved, in the interests of residents – that is, in the interests of the adjacent and surrounding communities, now and in the future.

Outlying parts of Toronto also warrant heritage protection

Secondly, the Heritage Toronto Sate of Heritage Report 2019, published by Heritage Toronto, emphasizes that heritage resources in outlying parts of Toronto – that is, in communities such as Mimico at some distance from downtown Toronto – need to be preserved, as much as downtown heritage resources warrant preservation.

Heritage preservation strongly benefits economic life of communities

Thirdly, the above-noted document underlines that extensive research supports the observation that heritage preservation strongly enhances the economic life of communities, where such preservation has occurred. This is a point that warrants emphasis: There is strong, measurable economic value, in ensuring that buildings such as 58 Wheatfield Road are preserved.

 

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