The article addresses evaluation of cultural built heritage and its contribution to the visual quality of urban landscape, in order to ascertain the level of importance attributed to heritage buildings and identify the physical characteristics of existing buildings on sites of heritage value that are more and less attractive to users, as well as the indication of historical and affective values which possibly influenced the user perceptions with respect to environmental and aesthetic quality.It follows the assumption that the aesthetic quality of the urban landscape is related to physical attributes and associations of morphological and typological elements that make up the urban landscape. Aspects related to the important role urban legislation plays when directed to preservation of urban areas and historic centers were also considered. Historic areas of three cities were selected as case study. Piratini represents cities with preserved historic centers, with a pioneering urban legislation; São José do Norte represents cities where cultural heritage was adulterated due to a lack of legislation that guarantee the preservation of built heritages; Porto Alegre represents cities where cultural heritage was partly preserved. The research was implemented through the use of qualitative and quantitative methods. Mental maps and interviews to users of historic areas allowed the identification of the strongest positive and negative images of public buildings and urban spaces. Questionnaires were administered to evaluate images of urban scenes with different levels of homogeneity, in order to investigate the role built cultural heritage has on the visual quality of urban landscape, measuring the damage to the aesthetics of the city caused by the lack or non-inclusion of issues relating to preservation of cultural heritage in the process of urban planning and subsidize the elaboration of public policies on the preservation and planning issues. Results indicate the relevance of studies focused on the visual quality of the urban landscape as a need to promote actions for qualification of public spaces, and in this context include the recognition that the facades of buildings that make up the urban landscape are collective assets that should be considered for the establishment of guidelines for new interventions and projects that generate positive evaluations. On one hand, results confirm the positive contribution of buildings which constitute the built cultural heritage in the visual quality of the urban landscape, on the other, the adulteration of cultural heritage generate negative evaluations. Accordingly, it is evident the need to curb the actions of distortion, mutilation and even demolition of buildings located in the ancient period of historic centers.