The call for the West Annex Heritage Conservation District was initiated by the ARA not long after the approval of the East Annex HCD. Defined as roughly the area west of Bedford to Bathurst and north of Bloor to Dupont, the West Annex was finally approved for study by City Council in 2004. Funding was to come from Section 37 monies set aside as part of the agreement settlement for the construction of One Bedford and consequent loss of heritage homes.
Madison Avenue was chosen as a pilot project for the study. It was carried out by members of the ARA and Cathy Nasmith, a highly respected Toronto heritage architect, under the guidance of the City’s Heritage Preservation Services (now called Heritage Planning). The results of that study were ultimately approved in 2019 and are available in two documents: Phase I Madison Avenue Study and Phase 1 Madison Avenue Plan.
Presently, the ARA is conducting a project to research the heritage values of properties and landscape in the remaining West Annex sector. The West Annex Heritage Project (WAHD project) is being led by the team at ASI, a leading architectural heritage firm in Canada. And under the leadership of ARA Board member Sandra Shaul, a steering committee comprised of Annex residents has been struck to support the project. FAQs about the project are available here.
The first community meeting to introduce and discuss the project was held on September 23. Materials from the presentation explaining the scope of the project are available here. The first community focus group to discuss the project is scheduled for Tuesday October 12 from 7:00 to 9:00 pm.