In 1953 the Historic Sites and Monuments Act established the Historic Sites and Monuments Board of Canada (HSMBC) in law.

Since the Heritage Railway Stations Protection Act came into force in 1990, almost 300 railway stations meeting certain criteria have been evaluated and more than half of them were designated, demonstrating Canada's strong commitment to the preservation of our country's architectural heritage.

Adopted in 2008, the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act was enacted in the spring of 2010 to protect federally owned lighthouses by designating them heritage lighthouses. The Act requires that designated heritage lighthouses be maintained and altered in a manner consistent with established conservation standards.