Working group formed to guide Oak Bay’s first proposed Heritage Conservation Area

‘This will be the first time … the District of Oak Bay will formally consider establishing an HCA’

Oak Bay’s first proposed heritage conservation area is well underway with an official working group.

The Heritage Conservation Area Working Group is set to help inform and guide community discussions to explore options, policies and regulations for formal heritage designation in Oak Bay. The group will inform and engage on thecommunity-led initiative to consider a proposed HCA bordered by Oak Bay Avenue, Beach Drive, Prospect Place, San Carlos Place and York Place.

“While the current and past official community plans have long supported the idea of a Heritage Conservation Area in principle, this will be the first time I know of that the District of Oak Bay will formally consider establishing an HCA,” said Coun. Kevin Murdoch who will serve as chair of the working group. “Council identified this initiative – and the establishing of a process for future applications – as one of our priorities for 2017-2018. ‘Protecting and preserving the unique character of Oak Bay’ is a statement that is widely used; through this working group, and with community input, we hope to create something more concrete from that aspirational statement including recommendations on this application, with recommended policies and regulations related to the creation of a Heritage Conservation Area.”

HCA Working Group members include: Murdoch; Heather Cochrane of the Heritage Commission; Will King, Advisory Design Panel; Patrick Frey, Advisory Planning Commission; Matt Fairbarns, Parks, Recreation and Culture and resident representatives Barb Grant, Robert Longe and Michael Prince of the proposed area, alongside community-at-large representatives Jean Sparks and Andrew Stinson.

The proposed HCA is bordered by York Place, San Carlos Avenue, a portion of Beach Drive and Oak Bay Avenue, and includes both Prospect Place and Broom Road. It also includes the shoreline of Rattenbury’s Beach and Haynes Park. Municipal and regional governments can create a Heritage Conservation Area that establishes regulatory guidelines and may list individual properties for protection. It would be Oak Bay’s first HCA, but there are about 60 in B.C. with several in Victoria.


 

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