Calgarians for Heritage Districts is an advocacy group focused on educating government and the public about Calgary’s remarkable Heritage Districts. We advocate for the creation of new ways to identify, manage, protect and celebrate them through policy, legislation and creative new tools and incentives.
Here are just a few of the many ways that Heritage Districts provide value.
- Social/Cultural: The historic environments in Heritage Districts give us roots, a meaningful connection to the past, and a sense of cultural identity. They offer security and stability. With their human scale, their rich, fine-grained, urban fabric and their mature tree canopy and gardens they are some of the most walkable places in the city.
- Environment: Heritage Districts encourage the retention and continued use of existing buildings, rather than their replacement. This has proven environmental benefits of reducing demolition and land fill (25% of Canadian landfill is used construction waste!). Reusing the embodied energy in existing buildings reduces our carbon footprint (the construction sector as a whole is responsible for 54% of global emissions). The greenest buildings are those that are already built!
- Economics: Heritage Districts offer diverse economic benefits to property owners and others. Research shows that property values tend to rise in heritage districts, because they offer stability and predictability that make owners more confident to buy and improve properties there. Employers benefit by being able to offer distinctive and attractive areas for employees to work and live. And citizens throughout the city, as well as tourists, are more likely to visit and patronize areas of the city with distinctive historic character.
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The Calgary Heritage Initiative Society (CHI) and Calgarians for Heritage Districts (CFHD) are independent organizations with no formal legal relationship. Occasionally, the two organizations collaborate on initiatives that advance our respective purposes of heritage preservation and the establishment of heritage districts in Calgary. Neither organization is responsible for the messages and the actions of the other, unless explicitly stated that the message or action is a joint or collaborative effort. CHI hosts the CHFD webpage as an information service to the heritage community.