News release

Sydney Neighbourhood Named Heritage Conservation District

A north-end Sydney area with heritage streetscapes has received provincial designation as Nova Scotia's sixth heritage conservation district.

The North End Sydney Heritage Conservation District was announced at a reception today, Oct.10 at St. Patrick's Church. The new designation, established under the province's Heritage Property Act, comes after a four-year effort by community residents, members of the Old Sydney Society, and staff and officials of the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, in conjunction with the provincial government.

"This is a positive step towards preserving an historic neighbourhood in Cape Breton Regional Municipality," said Bill Dooks, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage. "It will allow the district's heritage to be protected while permitting residents to enjoy the benefits of new development."

The project highlights the value of combining the efforts of community members, heritage organizations and multiple levels of government to preserve Nova Scotia's rich heritage. It reflects one of the strategic directions included in the province's heritage strategy, A Treasured Past, a Precious Future, launched earlier this year.

"The District contains the oldest buildings in Sydney, including several that were built shortly after the community's founding in 1785," said Tom Wilson, chair of the municipality's Heritage Advisory Committee. "It has already become a significant attraction for visitors to the area, especially the thousands of cruise-ship passengers who come to Sydney each year."

Cape Breton Regional Municipality has adopted a heritage conservation district bylaw to reinforce the efforts of north-end Sydney to preserve historic property. Finalized after intensive community consultations, it includes a heritage plan that sets standards for demolition, building and the development of streetscapes. The bylaw allows blending of old and new properties in the designated area, encourages renovation and allows for new development.

The North End Sydney Heritage Conservation District is roughly bounded by Desbarres, George and Nepean streets, and the Esplanade.


An historic streetscape in north-end Sydney has been named a heritage conservation district by the province. The designation was celebrated today (Oct. 10) at St. Patrick's Church.

Cape Breton Regional Municipality created a bylaw to support the designation of the area roughly bounded by Desbarres, George and Nepean streets and the Esplanade.

Residents, members of the Old Sydney Society, Cape Breton Regional Municipality staff and officials, and the provincial government worked together to establish the district.


Media Contacts:

Judith Shiers Milne
Tourism, Culture and Heritage 902-424-7398 E-mail:
Rick McCready
Cape Breton Regional Municipality 902-563-5072 E-mail: