Heritage homeowners face flood cleanup challenges
Most historical homes in Calgary can survive flood damage with the right care, says expert
Some of the neighbourhoods hit hardest by Calgary's floods are also some of the oldest, but modern clean-up techniques can do serious damage to flood-damaged heritage homes.
As many residents work to recover and rebuild their damaged homes, those living in heritage homes face the challenge of finding contractors who know how to work on older buildings.
"I was at a site on Friday afternoon," said Calgary's heritage planner Darryl Cariou. "There was a contractor there who was about to power-wash the inside of a basement, sandstone foundation, that would have done serious harm to that sandstone."
According to Cariou, many of the techniques used to clean up modern buildings can permanently damage heritage homes.
Contractors who specialize in restoration can help homeowners decide on the best course of action, he said.
"If they're left to dry, they can recover and they have in the past," he said.
Heritage homes across Calgary have survived multiple floods and with proper care might do the same this time, said Cariou.
Homeowners looking for advice or referrals are advised to get in touch with the Calgary Heritage Initiative.