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ICYMI: Balcony proposed to be restored on historic Elora hotel

The building owner has an encroachment agreement for council's consideration as part of restoring the heritage building
A rendering of the proposed restored balcony, left, along with a photograph from 1910 showing the balcony's presence on the West Mill streetscape.

This article was previously published on EloraFergusToday.

ELORA – As part of the restoration of a designated heritage building in Downtown Elora, the owner is looking to bring back a historic balcony.

A heritage permit application for 27-43 West Mill St. in Elora, historically the Commercial Hotel, building owner Kat Florence Canada Company Ltd. is looking to restore a balcony that fronts onto West Mill Street. 

A report said historical photographs have historically documented the presence of a balcony from the 1890s to sometime between 1930 and 1943 when it was removed and not replaced. 

“The proponent indicated a desire to reinstate the balcony as part of the redevelopment in a form similar to a historic balcony on the structure,” a report said. 

The proposed balcony will include five pine columns bolted into the concrete pad with u-shaped galvanized steel brackets. 

This is part of the overall redevelopment of the historic Commercial Hotel to have a ground floor commercial unit and residential on the upper two floors. 

Restoration noted in the heritage application includes: exposure of original stone exterior, reinstating original window openings and inserting new windows and doors, reinstatement of original roofline line and new roof cladding, interior renovations to facilitate both commercial units on the first floor and residential units on the second floor and third floor.

This work requires council to approve the heritage permit application, due to it being a designated heritage building, and an encroachment agreement with the town because it will extend onto municipal property – in this case the sidewalk. 

Should council approve this encroachment agreement, staff have recommended a number of conditions including constructing the columns to be non-structural, providing adequate lighting within the pedestrian area and it gets inspected at a minimum of once every five years.

Council will consider both the heritage application and encroachment agreement at its Monday meeting. 

Reports can be found here and here.

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Keegan Kozolanka

About the Author: Keegan Kozolanka

Keegan Kozolanka is a general assignment reporter for EloraFergusToday, covering Wellington County. Keegan has been working with Village Media for more than two years and helped launch EloraFergusToday in 2021.
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