City council approves demolition of St. George's Church

City council supported a motion Monday night to demolish St. George's Church.

'Once a building is gone you can't get it back,' resident says

Despite several community groups opposing the demolition, Windsor city council voted on Monday to tear down St. George's Church and hall.

The church diocese supports the demolition and has the approval of city council to flatten the historic structure with limitations on its rebuild.

Last month, council approved a residential rezoning for the property. The lots will be as wide as other lots in the neighbourhood. 

The height and character of the new homes must be consistent with the existing look of the Walkerville neighbourhood.

Tecumseh resident Melanie Paul Tanovich presented her plan to purchase the church and to turn it into a music and dance studio. Council voted against the idea.

"It's a great shame," Tanovich said after the vote. "The structure has been confirmed by highly respected professionals. It's beautiful inside. There's an ambience that just can't be appreciated unless you stand in it."

Council also heard from a group known as Save St. George's Church — Olde Walkerville.

"Once a building is gone you can't get it back," said Elaine Weeks, who wanted St. George's Church saved. "The people came forward tonight with clear evidence, with reasons to save the church."

The building was originally constructed in 1921, according to a report from city staff presented to council last month. In 1955, a larger church was constructed.

"Although there is identifiable heritage significance to the property, both buildings would need major work for their long-term future; and such work could reduce their heritage characteristics," the report states.