The board has adopted an extended service bylaw that establishes services relating to heritage conservation. This land use regulation tool can be utilized to allow recognition of the historical value and character of certain sites within the plan area, as seen on Map 12 Heritage Designations in the Regional Harmonized Official Community Plan. Heritage buildings or properties have sufficient historical value or character to justify conservation. Heritage designation is a legal protection and is mainly intended to record, recognize and commemorate , heritage buildings and properties.
Described in the Local Government Act (LGA), heritage designation is a legal protection tool for properties of particular value to a community. Unlike a Community Heritage Register, which can include a wide range of properties exhibiting various heritage values, heritage designation is typically reserved for properties that have outstanding merit and are highly representative of a community’s history and heritage.
The Community Heritage Register was established in 2009.
The Cowichan River is one of only ten designated heritage rivers in the country, and the third one is BC and its estuary is recognized as one of the world’s most biologically important areas for fish, waterfowl and wildlife. Yet land and water-based activities have threatened the estuary and its dependent species such as Chinook salmon, shellfish, water birds and eelgrass. The plan seeks to restore, protect and enhance the Cowichan Estuary so that fish and shellfish can be safely harvested, and the coastal environment can be enjoyed for social, cultural and recreational purposes.