Can I get any rebates or financial assistance for work done to my building?

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The Province of Nova Scotia has three programs that may allow a property owner of a municipally registered heritage property to recover a portion of their expenses incurred restoring or maintaining the exterior. These programs have specific requirements for eligibility. Contact the Heritage properties Programs, NS Tourism, Culture and Heritage, 1747 Summer Street, Halifax, NS B3H 3A6 or phone (902) 424-5647.

How am I as a property owner affected by this law?

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The success of preservation of exteriors of buildings of Bridgewater is dependent on the cooperation of our property owners. Protection restrictions of registered heritage properties are limited to the exterior of a building only. Changes to the exterior do require the approval of the Bridgewater Heritage Advisory Committee in order to maintain architectural reasons for registration. Registration remains in effect as the property changes ownership.

How do I go about getting my building registered?

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A formal request is made by completing the Registering a Heritage Property Application Form and completing information about your property. An assessment process will be completed. Attached is also a chart depicting the procedures followed by the Bridgewater Heritage Advisory Committee and Council to register the building.

How is a property considered for registration?

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The Bridgewater Heritage Advisory Committee may identify a property of significance and invite a property owner to register their property. Property owners are invited to consider the registration of their property as well.

What is the cost involved?

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There is no cost associated directly with the process of municipally registering a heritage property.

What restrictions does registration place on my property?

The Act provides for control over changes to the exterior of the building only. Approval for changes is required prior to undertaking any work. Generally speaking, land surrounding a building is not included in the registration process. A request for approval for proposed work to the exterior of the building would include the completion of an application to substantially alter a building. This includes surface changes, architectural alterations such as window and doors and paint colors. The Heritage Advisory Committee can suggest alternatives for your consideration which would be more in keeping with the heritage quality of the property.

What’s in it for me?

Your interest demonstrates that you value quality and character. If your register your property, you have taken a leading step in preserving a symbol of pride and character for the community of Bridgewater.

Who is the Authority responsible for this law?

A provincial Act empowers municipal governments to protect properties in local jurisdictions. Bridgewater Town Council appoints a Heritage Advisory Committee who advises Council and helps to administer Bridgewater's bylaw. The Committee also advises Council on what buildings are significant enough to register, the suitability of any alterations to exteriors of registered buildings and implement general promotion of heritage preservation in Bridgewater.

Why a law to protect heritage buildings?

Maintaining the exterior of buildings with character preserves history and enhances neighbourhoods, and your community. Buildings are a tangible reminder of the contributions to quality of life in our community.