Heritage Designation Project

The Town of Oakville's Heritage Designation Project aims to designate approximately one third of its heritage listed properties before 2025.

About the project

In November 2022, the Government of Ontario passed Bill 23, the More Homes Built Faster Act. The bill included several changes to the Ontario Heritage Act, including a two-year time limit for listed properties to remain on municipal heritage registers. 

Listed properties are properties that have been identified as having cultural heritage value but have not yet been designated. In Oakville, this change means that the existing 294 listed properties will be removed from Oakville’s heritage register as of January 1, 2025. To protect the town’s cultural heritage, the town has a goal of designating approximately one third of these listed properties before 2025.


Throughout 2023 and 2024, Heritage Planning staff will be producing Cultural Heritage Evaluation Reports (CHERs) for many of the town’s listed properties. These documents will provide an overview of the property and an evaluation of its cultural heritage value to determine if it meets the heritage designation criteria of the Ontario Heritage Act

These CHERs will be reviewed at monthly Heritage Oakville Advisory Committee meetings and Planning and Development Council meetings. For each property, Council will decide whether or not to proceed with designation. 

Staff will reach out to property owners of these listed properties throughout the evaluation and designation process.

What heritage designation means

Designation ensures that heritage properties are managed for future generations and that important buildings and landscapes in Oakville are protected. Designation is not meant to prevent change, but to help manage it to protect the town’s character and uniqueness of place. Heritage designation helps reduce waste by re-using and conserving existing structures and employs local crafts and tradespeople who maintain these important sites.

Each individual heritage property has a designation by-law that identifies the property’s heritage features. In most cases, these features are limited to the exterior of the building. Owners of heritage properties need a heritage permit before making changes to these heritage features. Heritage permits are free and most are processed within several business days.

Benefits of heritage designation

As a designated heritage property owner, you will:

  • Be part of a thriving heritage community in Oakville with over 170 individually designated properties and over 700 properties protected through four heritage conservation districts. 
  • Have access to access to the town’s Heritage Grant Program, a matching grant program that helps cover the cost of eligible restoration and repair projects for designated heritage properties.
  • Help conserve the cultural heritage of your neighbourhood for future generations. 
  • Receive a bronze plaque to display on the designated heritage building or property.

Examples of heritage designated properties


If you have any questions about the Heritage Designation Project, contact: 

Carolyn Van Sligtenhorst
Supervisor of Heritage Conservation
905-845-6601 ext. 3875