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Redpath Mansion demolition approved by culture minister

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--March 4, 2014.

Maka Kotto says the 128-year-old building does not have sufficient heritage value.

Quebec's culture minister says the Redpath Mansion is not worth saving, saying that after studying the building, the province has determined it does not have national heritage value.​

On February 17 Maka Kotto halted the demolition of the 128-year-old building for 30 days to assess its heritage value.

“I suspended the demolition of the Redpath house to make an informed decision in the interests of Quebec's heritage... I am aware of how symbolic this building is for heritage groups in Montreal,” said Kotto in a statement.

Kotto says he wished action had been taken to maintain the building at 3457 du Musée Street​ ​before it fell into disrepair.

The mansion was built in 1886 by architect Sir Andrew Taylor and, according to Heritage Montrea​l, it is one of the rare remaining examples of Queen Anne architecture in the city.

The home was originally built for a member of the Redpath family, one of the most influential Montreal families of the 19th century.

The building's preservation has been contested since 1986, when Heritage Montreal and Save Montreal obtained an injunction to stop it from being demolished by the owner.

Kotto says the ​Ministry of Culture and Communications​ decided that saving the house could not be justified based on its historical value, because it was not directly associated with John Redpath, the prominent 19th century businessman associated with the development of the Lachine Canal and the founding of Quebec's first sugar refinery.

The Sochaczevski family, which owns the Redpath Mansion, plans to build a four storey, 80-unit student student residence in its place.

"I hope the owner will include historical background on the site or in the new building, with the aim of preserving the memory," wrote Kotto.