Residents try to stop demolition of home awaiting heritage status approval

·2 min read

Residents of a west-end Toronto neighbourhood are trying to prevent a historic cottage in the area from getting torn down.

The home, located at 98 Superior Ave., is one of three historic stone cottages in the Mimico area that was recently recognized by city staff as holding "cultural heritage value."

Staff have recommended that the home be added to the city's Heritage Register, but that decision has not yet been approved.

Arwen Hunter, who lives across the street from the home, said residents found out there was a plan to tear the house down in August.

Since then, neighbours who want to preserve the building have rallied against the demolition in the hopes that the city would preserve it for its historical significance.

The home, which has a heritage status application, also has a demolition application. The city had issued a permit for demolition on Nov. 25.

Hunter told CBC Toronto the home should be discussed by the city before the city decides to demolish it.

"We'd like it to at least get to the historic board and then see if it really should be preserved or not," Hunter said.

Keith Burgess/CBC
Keith Burgess/CBC

The home is believed to have been from the early 1900s and is considered unique for its architectural build and stone cladding.

Early Saturday morning, two residents of the area were seen sitting on the porch of the home in effort to prevent the home from being torn down.

"The house, we believe, would have been torn down if it wasn't for their commitment," Hunter said.

Neighbours were hoping the demolition would wait until Monday when the city will vote on whether or not the home will be added to its Heritage Register.

She said the home owner told neighbours that it wouldn't be demolished on Saturday.

"The owner of the house said it wouldn't be demolished today but has put up equipment and has dropped a bin and has refused to talk to the neighbours," she said.

Charlotte Sheasby-Coleman, who has lived in the area for 34 years, said she was concerned when she saw a fence erected around the home.

Sheasby-Coleman said she checked with the city on Friday night and she was told crews were able to begin work at 6 a.m. Then she showed up shortly after around 7 a.m. when crews arrived.

Keith Burgess/CBC
Keith Burgess/CBC

She said the owner called the police and alleged she was trespassing when she refused to leave the property.

"I want to know nothing is going to happen here until at least Wednesday," Sheasby-Coleman said.

"It's people who don't care who come into our neighbourhood and want to destroy it for money."

The city has not yet responded to a request for comment.