Most of the structures featured in the ‘authentic’ section of Ottawa Condo Network site have a ‘heritage’ property status.This article will discuss what makes a structure special once it has been designated a ‘heritage’ building.
A property becomes ‘heritage’ through the passing of a bylaw within the municipality, and once designated, major restrictions are placed on the property. These restrictions are what makes the property unique. The purpose of these restrictions is to maintain the originality of the structure and to preserve its historical significance and unique architectural design. The terms of the heritage designation is unique to each property and can place restrictions on particular sections of the structure. For example, many of Ottawa Condo Network’s authentic loft heritage designations apply only to the exterior portions of the structure, allowing for interior alterations. This allows developers the opportunity to convert the interiors from their former use, into residential loft spaces.
Many developers of loft conversion projects in Ottawa were successful in preserving original interior features. Examples include: original schoolhouse staircases, original windows, original flooring, original stamped metal ceilings.
The heritage status goes beyond the understanding that the building’s exterior cannot be altered. The historical studies required and the rigorous municipal process involved in claiming a property as ‘heritage’ shows the significance of the buildings’ history and architectural importance. Authentic loft owners take pride in ownership with its original space and protected piece of history.