'Buildings on the Brink' list aims to preserve London's past
LONDON, ONT. -- This year’s list of so-called ‘Buildings on the Brink’ in and around London includes an historic brewery, a century-old medical school, and several other structures that helped lay the foundation for the Forest City as we know it today.
The Architectural Conservancy of Ontario and the Heritage London Foundation has published its latest list of buildings the organizations believe are at risk from the development and the wrecking ball.
“Just like the human body deteriorates when it’s not used, a building deteriorates when it’s not used,” said Kelley McKeating, the president of the London branch of the ACO.
‘Buildings on the Brink’ lists seven buildings, including a double house at 93-95 Dufferin Ave. built in the 1880s. There’s the former Kent Brewery site on Ann St., established in 1859. Just around the corner sits 176 Picadilly St., a wood cottage built in the 1880s. The gatehouse at the Elsie Perrin Williams Estate on Windemere Rd., built around 1895. There’s the century old medical school and War Memorial Children’s hospital on the site of the former South Street Hospital campus on South St.. And an Ontario gothic-revival farmhouse at 1588 Clarke Rd. from the 1860s also makes the list.
“It’s not about saving buildings just for the sake of saving them because they have some sort of significance,” said McKeating. “It’s really about the sort of city we want to live in. You know as you’re traveling on the bus, in your car, on your bicycle, or on foot, you look around and kind of breathe and say ‘this is kind of nice.’”
McKeating said the end goal is to get people talking about these buildings, in hopes of preserving some of London’s past.