Ongoing Work in the Queen's Park Heritage Conservation Area

Following adoption of the Queen’s Park Heritage Conservation Area in June 2017, Council endorsed a two year Implementation Program Work Plan. Implementation projects include the development of an Incentives Program and completion of the Special Limited Category Study.

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  • Through the Heritage Conservation Area policy development process, approximately 80 properties were identified for further study. An additional 12 protected properties were added to this Study through the Expanded Special Limited application period. Through the Study, these properties will be reclassified as either protected or non-protected, based on detailed analysis of their heritage merit and development options. 

    You can find out if a property is part of the Study by reviewing the Map or Table of HCA Properties by Category, or by contacting the Planning Division.

    Phase One: Assessing Heritage Value

    The first phase of the study is now complete.

    The City hired heritage professionals to assess the heritage value of each of the properties in the Special Limited Category. To view the consultants' report, and all the heritage value assessments, click here.

    Based on the results of this work Council removed Heritage Conservation Area protection from the following 33 properties on June 19, 2018:

    228 Fifth Avenue

    223 Manitoba Street

    220 Second Street

    116 St. Patrick Street


    408 Fifth Street


    425 Oak Street


    402/404 Second Street


    232 Third Avenue


    506 First Street


    321 Oliver Street


    436 Second Street


    310 Third Avenue

    226 Fourth Avenue


    112 Regina Street


    523 Second Street


    230 Third Street

    229 Fourth Avenue


    114 Regina Street


    525 Second Street


    233 Third Street


    312 Fourth Street


    210 Regina Street


    122 Sixth Avenue


    312 Third Street


    326 Fourth Street


    323 Regina Street


    124 Sixth Avenue



    413 Fourth Street


    212 Second Street


    202 Sixth Avenue



    116 Granville Street


    215 Second Street


    216 Sixth Avenue



    The remaining approximately 50 properties are proceeding to phase two of the Study.

    Heritage Assessments were also completed for the 12 protected properties added to the Study through the Expanded Special Limited program in the fall of 2018. Six properties will be recommended to Council for consideration of having their protection removed. The remaining six properties will continue to Phase Two of the Study.

    Click here to read the Council report on the completion of Phase One of the Expanded Study. This is also where you can access the consultants' reports for these properties.

    Phase Two: Assessing Development Potential

    Phase two of the Study is now complete.

    The City hired an architectural firm to assess the potential of each remaining house to reach the maximum floor space permitted on that site in the Zoning Bylaw. This phase of the Study included properties in the Special Limited category (those that were deemed to have heritage value), and six Expanded application properties.

    To view the consultants' report and all the development potential assessments, click here.

    To read the Council report which launched Phase Two, click here.

    Final Reclassification

    The remaining properties will be evaluated against the Heritage Conservation Area's Evaluation Checklist. If a house receives a score of 60% or less on the Evaluation Checklist, it would be considered reasonable to move the property to the non-protected category. Those properties that receive a score on the checklist that indicates the house should be retained (61%+), would be moved to the protected category. At the end of the Study, the Special Limited category would no longer exist. Leaving only two categories: protected and non-protected.

    Following the completion of their evaluation, staff would bring forward an OCP amendment for the properties where it is demonstrated to be reasonable to remove protection. City staff will recommend to Council that they support the amendment.

    A public hearing is required before Council can make their decision. A single public hearing will be held for all properties. in the Study It is anticipated that this public hearing will be held in spring 2019. Notices will be sent to Queen’s Park residents approximately three weeks beforehand.

    Other Opportunities for Removing Protection 

    At any time, an owner can apply for an Official Community Plan amendment to remove the protection from their property. Owner may also apply for a Heritage Alteration Permit to allow demolition, at any time. Both types of applications are reviewed against the same Evaluation Checklist. 

    For more information about the process for either application type please review the Guide for the Queen's Park Heritage Conservation Area.

  • NEW! Incentives

    A zoning amendment bylaw was adopted by Council on June 19, 2018. The bylaw created a new Single Detached Dwelling District, specific to Queen’s Park, called “RS-4”. Through this new zone, all protected properties now have:

    1. a Floor Space Ratio (FSR) of 0.7; and
    2. the ability to transfer unused density from the principal house to a laneway or carriage house, up to a maximum size of 958 square feet.

    The remaining zoning regulations for both the principal house and the laneway or carriage house (such as height, setbacks, and site coverage) would stay the same.

    Properties within the Heritage Conservation Area which are: 1) already excluded because they are commercial, institutional, or multi-family; OR 2) zoned Single Detached Dwelling Districts (Heritage) (RS-6), were not rezoned as part of this bylaw.

    The new zone does not result in any changes in the existing regulations for non-protected properties. However, the approach of rezoning all properties (rather than just the protected ones) allows flexibility for properties to change protection categories within the Heritage Conservation Area policy.

    The other incentives identified for short term implementation did not require any zoning changes and are already in place. These incentives include: 

    1. Allowing minor relaxations for laneway and carriage house guidelines (similar to those already in place for accessible units and energy efficient design).
    2. Building Code relaxations, at the request of the owner (note: life and safety requirements will not be relaxed).

    Sign up for the mailing list (above) to receive updates on the process.

    More Incentives Coming Soon

    Council also supported moving forward with additional incentives over the medium term. Staff expect to report back to Council about these in the winter of 2018/2019. Additional incentives include:

    • Developing a policy to support additions to buildings that do not conform with the Zoning Bylaw.
    • Allowing multiple unit conversions with up to three rental units in a building on large properties that are already over the permitted density. No laneway house would be permitted on these properties.
    • Developing additional features for the Heritage Conservation Area’s design guidelines, such as suggested renovation options, and further examples of approvable changes.
    • Exploring ways to speed up related permit processes.
    • Developing a system to provide additional services to support owners when they apply to renovate.
    • Refining the Evaluation Checklist for demolition permit applications or applications to remove protection from a property.

    Council also considered allowing the stratification of laneway and carriage houses. Council’s support was mixed, so staff will continue to explore different approaches for this incentive and will report back to Council.

    Some of the other incentives presented during community consultation are not being implemented for protected properties, but will instead continue to be used as incentives for Heritage Revitalization Agreements. These include: larger laneway or carriage houses, stratification of the principal dwelling, and small lot subdivision.


    As part of the implementation of the Heritage Conservation Area, Council directed staff to explore zoning incentives for those properties which would be protected by the policy. 

    To start, three potential incentives were being considered (Increasing Floor Space Ratio, exempting basement floor space and exempting attics from floor space).

    The community and other stakeholders were consulted in December regarding the proposed incentive options. Based on the feedback received, the scope of the incentives program has been expanded to include a wider range of zoning incentives (including the incentives being considered by the City of Vancouver) as well as other categories of incentives (such as process-based incentives or financial-based incentives).

    A range of incentives were researched by the City. The results of this research was presented to Council in March and to the community in April. The reports summarizing the findings are included below under "Incentives Program Process."

    A framework for the implementation of incentives was supported by Council in May. The City is now moving forward with implementation.

    Incentives Program Progress 

    June 13, 2017: Council adopts the Queen’s Park Heritage Conservation Area

    July 2017: Working Group Zoning Incentive Recommendations

    October 16, 2017: Council adopts the QPHCA Implementation Work Plan, which includes zoning incentives for protected properties

    December 4, 2017: Report to Council regarding incentive options and consultation plan

    December 5, 2017: Committee Consultation – Community Heritage Commission

    December 6, 2017: Committee Consultation – Advisory Planning Commission

    December 2017: Consultation Round One – Zoning Incentive Open Houses and Survey

    January 17 and 19, 2018: Realtor Consultation

    January 29, 2018: Report to Council regarding results of December public consultation and next steps

    February 7, 2018: Panel Discussion - Learning from Other Perspectives. Panel Discussion Summary Report and boards presented at the Open House prior to the start of the panel.

    March 5, 2018: Report to Council regarding implementation work program update and proposed direction

    March 12 2018: Report to Council on incentive options research findings and Discussion Paper

    March 27, 2018: Committee Consultation – Advisory Planning Commission

    April 4, 2018: Committee Consultation – Community Heritage Commission

    April 2018: Consultation Round Two Open House Boards

    April 16, 2018: Report to Council on Economic Analysis 

    May 7, 2018: Report to Council on consultation findings and recommended incentives

    May 15, 2018: Advisory Planning Commission Consideration of Proposed Short Term Incentives. Agenda package, on table materials, and staff presentation

    May 28, 2018: Report to Council – Proposed Zoning Amendment Bylaw for incentives identified to be implemented in the short term. 

  • After the adoption of the Queen's Park Heritage Conservation Area, the Heritage Properties Maintenance Standards Bylaw was revised to ensure the bylaw reflected the new Heritage Conservation Area, other revisions to City policy, and current best practices in heritage conservation.

    The bylaw was adopted by Council on January 29, 2018.

  • Owners of houses in the non-protected category, whose properties they feel have strong enough heritage merit, could change to the protected category by applying to list the house on the Heritage Register. Once a property is included on the Heritage Register it would also become part of the protected category and would be eligible for any incentives adopted. There is no fee associated with the application.

    Staff will continue to find opportunities to encourage interested owners to take advantage of voluntary protection. 

  • A review of the Heritage Conservation Area would be launched approximately two years from adoption, as is best practice. The review would include an assessment of the impact of the heritage protection provisions, a review of the administrative process and procedures, and analysis of the outcomes of the Heritage Conservation Area’s design guidelines.

    Upon the policy review’s launch, indicators would be developed related to the elements of the policy to be reviewed. Those indicators would then be used to analyze data collected over the two year implementation period. Once the review was completed, staff would bring forward the results to Council, and may propose changes to the policy in order to address any issues which might have arisen from the analysis.

    The full scope of the review, including the indicators to be used, would be determined in consultation with Council.