Fernie is taking steps to protect its heritage buildings.
The City is using a $35,000 grant from the Columbia Basin Trust, and $10,000 of its own money, to develop a Heritage Master Plan.
The money will be used to hire a consultant who will assist in the development of the plan, but also conduct a series of “kitchen-table” style community engagement sessions from May to August.
Gord Sombrowski is a member of the committee formed in August to initiative this process.
“Of all of Fernie’s many wonders perhaps less understood, and therefore more at risk, is our heritage. Everyday I see people strolling amidst our magnificent architectural heritage looking with pleasure, taking photos, enquiring about our history,” suggests Sombrowski.
The committee is made up of representatives of Heritage Fernie, Tourism Fernie, the City and local business and property owners.
“We all enjoy living with, and benefitting from, our heritage. We have a duty to ensure that it is properly looked after. Our future as a vibrant town will depend upon it!” Sombrowksi declares.
“One of our Official Community Plan goals is development of a heritage inventory and heritage planning toolkit,’ Fernie Mayor Mary Giuliano explains.
“We are pleased to be able to support Heritage Fernie as they spearhead this initiative. It will provide a valuable instrument for the City to make informed decisions on the redevelopment, protection and restoration of heritage buildings and spaces in our community.”
The outcomes of the “kitchen-style” sessions are expected to be shared at a community Open House during the 2018 Chautauqua and Fall Fair.
Heritage Fernie is still encouraging feed back from the public.
(Photo courtesy of Tourism Fernie)