Notice of intention to designate: 49 Metcalfe Street

Take notice that the Council of the Corporation of the City of Guelph intends to designate 49 Metcalfe Street as a property of cultural heritage value or interest under section 29, Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act, R.S.O. 1990, Chapter 0.18.

Description of the property

The legal description of the subject property is PLAN 357 LOT 26 PT LOT 24; City of Guelph.

Statement of cultural heritage value or interest

The subject property is worthy of designation under Part IV, Section 29 of the Ontario Heritage Act because it meets five of the prescribed criteria for determining cultural heritage value or interest, according to Ontario Regulation 9/06 as amended by 569/22. The heritage attributes of 49 Metcalfe Street display: design or physical, historical or associative, and contextual value.

The subject property meets Criterion 1 because it exhibits design or physical value as a rare example of the Art Moderne style architecture in the City of Guelph. The Dario Pagani house is the first Art Moderne residence constructed in the city and remains Guelph’s only example of Art Moderne residential architecture.

The subject property meets Criterion 2 because it displays a high degree of artistic merit. Inspired by aerodynamic design, the Art Moderne style emphasized streamlined, curving forms, and long horizontal lines. The Pagani house includes features typical of the Art Moderne, with smooth, rounded stucco walls, a flat roof with a small ledge at roofline, an asymmetrical façade, corner sash window groupings, and metal balustrades.

The subject property meets Criterion 4 because it has direct associations with Dario Pagani, an Italian immigrant that became one of Guelph’s most significant mid-century building contractors, and Dario’s son, Richard Pagani, who was raised at 49 Metcalfe and would become a provincially significant architect.

The subject property meets Criterion 5 because it yields information that contributes to an understanding of the Italian immigrant experience in the first half of the twentieth century. When the Dario Pagani House was constructed, St. George’s neighborhood was occupied primarily by Canadians of Anglo-Celtic descent. The Dario Pagani house represents the social and economic mobility of working-class Italian immigrants in mid-twentieth century Guelph, especially those involved in construction trades.

The subject property meets Criterion 9 because it is a landmark. The property stands out amongst the predominantly brown, yellow, and redbrick revival style residences that ring St. George’s Park on Metcalfe, Grange, and Palmer streets. The stark white stucco walls, situation on a corner lot, prominent visual location across from St George’s Park, and unique Art Modern architectural style make the residence a landmark in the neighborhood.

Description of heritage attributes

The following elements of the property at 49 Metcalfe Street should be considered as heritage attributes in a designation under Part IV, Section 29 of the Ontario Heritage Act:

  • The building form, including o Flat roof o Curved exterior wall
  • Window and door openings including:
  • Stepped 3-unit window on the curved wall
  • Wrap-around corner windows
  • Front door with porthole window
  • Extant original exterior doors
  • Poured concrete walls
  • Metal balustrade and balcony support
  • Stucco cladding
  • Protruding attached garage
  • Original internal roof drainage system (main roof and garage roof)

It is intended that non-original features may be returned to the documented earlier designs or to their documented original without requiring City Council permission for an alteration to the design.

A more detailed description of the property’s cultural heritage value may be found in staff’s report to City Council dated November 21, 2023 and at

Notice of objection

Any person may send a notice of objection to this proposed designation, before 4 p.m. on ­­­Friday December 22, 2023. This notice must be sent by registered mail or delivered to the Clerk of the City of Guelph and must set out the reason for the objection and all relevant facts. If a notice of objection is received, the Council of the City of Guelph shall consider the objection and make a decision whether or not to withdraw the notice of intention to designate the property within 90 days after the end of the 30-day objection period. If Council decides not to withdraw its intention to designate, a heritage designation bylaw must be passed within 120 days after the date of publication of the notice of intention to designate. Council must publish a notice of passing of the designation bylaw which is followed by a 30-day appeal period when appeals of the bylaw may be given to the Ontario Land Tribunal for a hearing and decision.

Stephen O’Brien
City Clerk
City of Guelph
1 Carden Street, Guelph ON N1H 3A1

For more information

Jack Mallon, Heritage Planner
Planning Services 519-822-1260 x 3872
[email protected].
Notice date: November 23, 2023