The owner of 574 Walter Ave. has left the property to Saanich to become a natural park.

Heritage home to become park space in Gorge-Tillicum neighbourhood

Property at 574 Walter Ave. to become natural park

In a rare move the Saanich Heritage Foundation is approving the removal of a registered heritage home.

And for good reason.

The once prominent cottage that Welsh carpenter John Lloyd and wife Margaret built at 574 Walter Ave. in 1914 has been without much needed repair for several decades. Boarded up and vacant, the home will be removed as its owner has bequeathed the property to Saanich to become a natural park.

The new park will be 62 feet by 120 feet, at the corner of Walter Avenue and Dysart Road.

“I grew up with a friend who lived at 574 Walter, and even then it had neglect and maintenance problems,” said Coun. Vic Derman. “It has problems that go back to when I was a kid, I’m not saying how long ago that was.”

Council approved a report from parks and recreation that recommended its removal from the heritage registry.

Despite its derelict state the home will go for sale. The property will be rezoned from residential to P-4N (natural park).

It’s not likely the house will sell, in which case there are heritage elements that could be saved, said architect Brad Shuya, president of the Saanich Heritage Foundation.

“We support deconstruction and would like to support salvage and deconstruction,” said Shuya, who also supports the property’s removal from the heritage registry.

CAO Paul Thorkelsson was quick to remind council and staff the new park must stay within the definition of a natural park.

“If it’s not used as a natural park, the owner left instructions for the property to revert to the United Church, so natural park is an emphasis,” Thorkelsson said.

Rob Wickson, president of the Gorge Tillicum Community Association, is familiar with the home and property.

“Ideally we will install a path that cuts through the corner of the property, as a park, for pedestrians,” Wickson said. “There’s some nice trees and one that’s not in good shape, I expect it may come down.”

The home was part of Saanich’s heritage walking tour and is described as a remnant from the tail end of the western boom that preceded the First World War. The dwelling’s original verandah has been enclosed, original bargeboards complete with saw tooth detailing and finials at the gable peaks survive. The house features cedar shingle siding and a picturesque roofline.



Just Posted

Saanich resident leads crusade against cigarettes in B.C. drugstores

Province allows drugstores to sell cigarettes and some feel policy should change, retailers disagree

Saanich councillor fears weed could crowd out food as greenhouses convert

Head of provincial association representing greenhouse vegetable farmers not worried about issue

PHOTOS: India Mela celebrates culture, dance and food

The annual downtown event brought culture and fun together

Residential construction activity slows across Greater Victoria

Vancouver Island Construction Association warns of ‘mixed outlook’

VICTORIA FRINGE FEST: There’s always something new to discover on stage

33rd annual live theatre festival has numerous styles and topics to choose from

Bodies of two missing Surrey men found near Ashcroft: RCMP

Ryan Provencher and Richard Scurr have been missing since July 17

Hearings begin as Vancouver Island mom fights for allegedly abducted daughter

Tasha Brown now in Jersey in the British Isles, fundraiser being held in Nanaimo

B.C. manhunt suspects left cellphone video before they died: family

Family member says Kam McLeod, Bryer Schmegelsky recorded final wishes

VIDEO: RCMP unveil new, state-of-the-art forensics lab in Surrey

The laboratory is expected to handle thousands of forensic services from across Canada annually

Scheer promises EI tax credit for new parents if Conservatives form government

The government currently taxes employment insurance benefits for new parents

B.C. seizes 1.5M grams contraband tobacco, down from 5.75M grams the year prior

The 2019-2020 seizures were a sharp drop compared to the 2018-2019 year,

B.C. Speaker tight-lipped about aide’s legislature security tour

B.C. Liberals question Alan Mullen’s drive across Canada, U.S.

B.C. sets rules for ride hailing, same minimum fee as taxis

Larger operating areas seen as threat by cab companies

Most Read