Dynamic Downtowns Workbook: Using Heritage to Build Strong, Vibrant Downtowns

C+S Planning Group

Year: 2013

The Dynamic Downtowns Workbook is a resource for communities that want to know more about how to include heritage buildings as part of their downtown revitalization strategy. The Workbook begins with a ‘Timeline of Heritage Conservation’ to provide a context for communities in British Columbia. The ‘Heritage and Downtown Revitalization’ section identifies the main economic uses of heritage buildings to support downtown revitalization. ‘Planning for Heritage’ highlights a basic approach to heritage recognition, while ‘Heritage and the Environment’ speaks to the environmental benefits of heritage buildings, as well as the barriers developers face.

The five ‘Case Studies’ included in the Workbook illustrate examples of how some British Columbia communities are incorporating heritage buildings into their downtown revitalization. Finally, the ‘Tools in the Toolkit’ section, and the following ‘Checklist for Communities’ bring together an approach for incorporating heritage buildings into a bigger strategy.

The Tools in the Toolkit section is meant to be followed sequentially, with a community first looking at how it is (1) Building Capacity, (2) Planning for heritage buildings in the downtown, (3) Implementing tools that can support the reuse of heritage buildings, and finally (4) Assessing the effectiveness of the approach.

Table of Contents

  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • How to Use this Workbook
  • Timeline: Heritage Conservation in British Columbia
  • Heritage & Downtown Revitalization
  • Planning for Heritage
  • Heritage and the Environment
  • Case Studies in British Columbia
  • A Model of Heritage & Downtown Revitalization: Nelson and the Main Street Program
  • Downtown Revitalization Strategy: Nanaimo
  • Permissive Tax Exemption: Heritage Train Station, Kelowna
  • Financial Incentives: Historic Downtown, Victoria
  • Shaping Growth: Heritage Revitalization Agreement Guidelines
  • Tools in the Toolkit
  • Checklist for Communities