Maclean House now historically protected

Research important for designation

The Maclean House was facing destruction and is now a protected heritage structure.

On Jan. 26, city council followed in the footsteps of the Toronto Heritage Board and designated 7 Austin Ter. the Maclean House.

Councillor Joe Mihevc said it would not have happened without residents, heritage advocates and local MPP Eric Hoskins rallying to the cause.

“This is yet another example of the community coming together and saving the story of our city,” he said. “They did a lot of homework that they gave to the city.”

Nearby residents told city officials the century old house was owned by John Maclean, the former publisher of Maclean’s magazine,
and was built by architect John Lyle. Lyle built a series of notable buildings including Union Station.

While Toronto’s Heritage Preservation Services was in the midst of doing its own research back in December, the property owner began removing windows, doors and a gate from the home.

Though it wasn’t illegal, it spurred residents and city into quick action and also prompted provincial Minister of Culture Aileen Carroll to order a 60-day stop work order on Dec. 21.

The designation means the city now has the power to protect aspects of the home although the decision can be appealed.

“They (owners) have to honour the heritage designation and demolition can’t happen,” said Mihevc.

The city can’t force the property owner to restore exterior elements of the house that have already been removed.

“It’s heritage preservation, not restoration,” said Mihevc.

About this article:

By: Kris Scheuer
Posted: Feb 16 2010 3:03 pm
Filed in: NEWS
Edition: Toronto