1820 - Yes, date unknown
||Alexander Grant |
||of, Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
||50 Brookside Crescent, Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada
|1857ish stone farm house with summer kitchen |
||50 Brookside Crescent, Kitchener, Ontario
|Eby ID Number
||Yes, date unknown
||22 Apr 2021 |
- Forest Heights farmhouse to get heritage designation
by Catherine Thompson Waterloo Region Record
KITCHENER \emdash It's a typical older subdivision in Kitchener, with tree-shaded, quiet streets lined with modest bungalows. But turn the corner on Brookside Crescent in Forest Heights, and a striking Georgian stone farmhouse that's about 100 years older than any of its neighbours greets the eye.
The 1855 farmhouse, complete with a summer kitchen, stone outbuilding and a front porch that covers its full width, sits on almost two-thirds of an acre in the midst of the 1960s-era subdivision.
Kitchener's heritage planners want to protect the house with a heritage designation, which would prevent any alterations to its heritage and any demolition, without council approval.
"Living in this house is like living on a farm," says current owner Michael Krause, who grew up in a farm village in Germany and whose parents bought and lived on a farm when the family immigrated to Canada 36 years ago. "So living there just feels good, natural, like farm living."
The house is a particularly attractive example of the early stone farmhouses that once dotted the countryside in what is now Kitchener, heritage planners say. It was likely built in 1855 by Alexander Grant, who owned the property until 1857. The house includes original granite fieldstone chimneys and the plastered, whitewashed walls facing the front porch that are typical of many Mennonite homes.
The city decided to protect the home with the designation when Krause came forward with a request to sever a parcel from the lot so that he could build a duplex for his parents and in-laws. It required designation as a condition for him being able to develop the parcel.
It's a strategy that city heritage planners are using more and more, said Victoria Grohn, a heritage planner with the city. Heritage planners spent years determining which properties around the city have heritage merit, listing them on the city's heritage register. When owners of a property on the register come to the city looking for planning approvals, the city can require a more in-depth study to determine the property's heritage value, and ask for designation if the property meets heritage criteria, Grohn said.
That quid pro quo approach balances the interests of property owners with the city's desire to conserve heritage buildings and sites in the city, she said.
The city secured heritage protections recently for other properties in a similar way, such as the old Kaufman mansion (the former Ratz-Bechtel funeral home) at the heart of a major redevelopment proposal and the Huck Glove building on Victoria Street.
Krause said he was supportive of designating the building.
"I bought the house because of its uniqueness, and I could never see myself living in a run-of-the-mill design in suburbia. I fully believe that the house requires and demands designation, as its one of the few original farm houses left in the area."
The city generally tries to work with owners to protect heritage, Grohn said, rather than impose controls on an unwilling owner.
"This is a great example where we're able to achieve a designation with full support of the property owner. I would say it's fair to describe this as a win-win," Grohn said.
Thompson, C. (2019). Forest Heights farmhouse to get heritage designation. TheRecord.com. Retrieved 31 January 2019, from https://www.therecord.com/news-story/9149604-forest-heights-farmhouse-to-get-heritage-designation/?fbclid=iwar0rcfrdgazej8atectrwben1rez6cpsucki_w40wcc-us6rg8hdshsrqww#.XFGx3R52hU8.facebook
|Born - CA 1820 - of, Kitchener, Waterloo Region, Ontario, Canada