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UPDATED: Neighbours have concerns about heritage home move

A restored Edwardian era home now called Centennial House will be moving once again to a new location on Kyle Street.

A restored Edwardian era home now called Centennial House will be moving once again to a new location on Kyle Street.

The move, expected to take place by the end of June, will be the second move for the impressive Foursquare style house that was originally constructed on the south side of Clarke Street and was relocated several years ago to 2714 Clarke St. Most recently it housed the Heritage House Pizza company.

The building will now be part of the city arts centre precinct after the provincial government turned the house over to Port Moody to make way for the Evergreen Line. Centennial House's new home will be a city-owned empty lot, covered with neatly trimmed grass, at the corner of Kyle and St. George streets.

The move is considered good news for Port Moody Station Museum manager Jim Millar, who is pleased to see valuable heritage retained.

"It's nice to see that it's being preserved," Millar said.

However, some PoMo residents aren't so sure about the move to their neighbourhood.


The homeowners living next to the lot on St. George were at Tuesday's council meeting to express concerns about the upcoming addition to their street.

"We just got this notice, we've had no prior information sent to us at all about anything being done on the property next door," said Jennifer Warner. "What is the intent of it, and is there going to be more housing put on the same lot?"

The city's intention was to save the house from being demolished to make way for the Evergreen Line, said Mayor Mike Clay, adding the plan is to use the house for arts centre programs.

Staff have proposed positioning the home at the far north end of the lot, facing Kyle Street, to provide a buffer zone between the back of Centennial House and the neighbour's property.

But some members of council weren't happy with a request from staff that there be a zero-metre setback from Kyle Street, with Clay and Coun. Rick Glumac suggesting the house should be set further back from the street.

"The principle was to enhance the Kyle streetscape and provide compatibility with what's happening on that site and the heritage building at the arts centre as well," said city planner Mary de Paoli.

The staff report also notes Centennial's position on the property, in addition to it linking it with the Arts Centre and providing a privacy buffer for the neighbouring property, will allow for parking to be installed on St. Andrews Street to support future use of the building.

Allowing a zero-metre setback from Kyle Street will also give the house movers more flexibility when it comes time to set the house down, sometime before June 30.

Council granted the necessary development variance permit to relax the setback requirements, with Clay and Coun. Zoe Royer voting against the motion.


Centennial House is one of just a few remaining landmarks of the booming lumber town that became the City of Port Moody in 1913, said the Honourable James Moore, senior minister for British Columbia and Port Moody-Westwood-Port Coquitlam, in a press release.

"I am proud that we have the opportunity to work together as a community to give the Centennial House a new lease on life on Kyle Street," Moore said.

The house is also valued for its association with Frederick Appleyard, who acquired the house by 1914, worked in the lumber industry and served on the Port Moody City Council in 1917. It is currently in the city's heritage register.

Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Blair Lekstrom said Centennial House is an important historic building in the community and the province is pleased to have had a hand in its preservation.

"By conserving and celebrating historic places, we value our communities, our future and ourselves. The Centennial House will be in good hands."

Port Moody Mayor Mike Clay also welcomed the building for city purposes. "Port Moody takes pride in our heritage, and preserving one of the early Port Moody homes is very significant to council, and to our residents. This comes at a particularly significant time as we prepare to celebrate our centennial anniversary in 2013," Clay said in the press release. "We are very pleased to have been able to secure this arrangement with the province and the Evergreen Project team, and thank them for their shared desire to preserve a piece of our history."


Early construction of the Evergreen Line is underway and includes installing underground power lines, removing buildings and widening roads. This work needs to occur before major construction, which will start after the province selects the primary contractor later this summer.

"TransLink would like to thank the province for their decision to donate this important piece of history," stated vice-chair of Mayors' Council on Regional Transportation Peter Fassbender. "Not only will this generous donation allow for an accelerated start on the Evergreen Line project to bring improved transit options to Port Moody more quickly, but it will help maintain a piece of Port Moody's history and further enhance the community."

The Evergreen Line is expected to open in the late summer of 2016 and to create 8,000 jobs during construction.

It is not known how much it will cost to relocate the house from Clarke Street to Kyle Street, however, the city is expected to contract out the move in the next few weeks. "We don't have the capacity (to do the work), said city spokesperson Leslyn Johnson.

- with files from Sarah Payne