Council has endorsed a number of initiatives, grant programs and policies in order to support the conservation of residential, commercial and institutional heritage buildings in the City of Vernon.
As part of the City’s heritage conservation efforts Council adopted a Heritage Register. The Heritage Register provides a comprehensive list of identified heritage sites, as well as Statements of Significance and an illustration for those sites with heritage plaques. The register identifies properties, which have been designated by bylaw as a municipal site, as well as, properties for which a Heritage Revitalization Agreement (HRA) Bylaw has been adopted and an associated heritage conservation covenant has been registered. The designated municipal heritage sites and those governed by a HRA are considered “protected heritage properties” as per provincial legislation.
The program offers owners of properties listed on the Vernon Heritage Register the opportunity to annually apply for a grant for up to 50% of the value of works completed on the property the previous year, with the grant amount not exceeding $5,000.
This program applies to properties listed on the Vernon Heritage Register in order to assist owners with the cost of restoring the exterior, foundations and roof structures of heritage buildings. Grant applications are accepted throughout the year. Restoration work is not to commence until the grant application has been approved.
These are legally binding agreements negotiated by the City and an owner of heritage property. HRAs are powerful and flexible tools specifically written to suit unique properties and situations. The terms of the agreement supersede land use regulations and may vary use, density and siting regulations.
A Heritage Alteration Permit (HAP) is required to in order to construct works to the exterior of heritage sites included in the register and governed by a Heritage Designation Bylaw, or a Heritage Revitalization Agreement Bylaw and covenant require a HAP.
The City’s heritage goals and supporting policies are outlined in Section 19 of the Official Community Plan (OCP).
OCP Sec.19 - Heritage Goals
Enhance the historic identity of the community by seeking to reflect Vernon’s heritage in new development.
Enhance and promote the city’s heritage in two key areas of the community, Lower East Hill and Downtown.
Enhance heritage properties though the development of policy provisions that ensure adjacent development is compatible with, and complementary to, the features of heritage properties.
Identify, inventory, protect and replace significant heritage trees in the city.
Increase community awareness of Vernon’s heritage.
For more information on the City’s Heritage policy please refer to Official Community Plan, Section 19 Heritage.