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Dmajackson
Mar 3, 2010, 12:38 PM
Project no longer under wraps
Historic building in central Halifax getting makeover
By BILL POWER Business Reporter
Wed. Mar 3 - 4:53 AM

THE people behind an intriguing renovation of a landmark building at the intersection of Windsor and Almon streets in Halifax are about to take the wraps off a labour of love that began more than six months ago.

A protective enclosure that went up to allow a painstaking reconstruction of the two-storey building at 2810 Windsor St. to continue during winter months is expected to be taken off any day now.

"It’s understandable that many people in the neighbourhood are curious about how the renovation has turned out. The old building has been a landmark for the neighbourhood and for the entire city for decades," Louis Wolfson, president of Peppermint Properties, said Tuesday.

The building is across the street from the parking lot for the Halifax Forum and opposite the Brooklyn Warehouse restaurant. It was built in the 1930s and originally housed a Dominion grocery store and adjacent pharmacy.

Up until renovations started last fall, the location was also home to Almanac Used Furniture and Antiques, a wonderfully eclectic shop that has long been something of a neighbourhood institution in its own right. That business has moved five blocks to 2820 Isleville St.

The completely rebuilt structure is to be called the Windsor & Almon Building. The main floor features about 6,500 square feet of commercial space, mostly with street frontage and four-metre ceilings.

Almon Lofts is the name of a second-floor residential component with eight units of various shapes and sizes, and slightly upscale rents ($1,100 per month for a one bedroom).

There are oversized windows at every turn, and refinished hardwood floors, exposed timber trusses and refinished radiators throughout. There are many stylish touches such as period-design bathrooms and slick-looking kitchens to compliment heritage features.

The exterior brick facade has been completely reappointed with new windows and custom moulding.

The complex will be ready for occupancy in May.

A precursor company to Peppermint Properties, started by Wolfson’s grandfather, has owned the building at Windsor and Almon since the 1950s.

Rapid residential and commercial growth in the neighbourhood prompted the owner to begin considering options for the site.

Wolfson saw potential in the large basement, with its high ceiling and many solid, if dated, original construction features.

"It was very rough, but the basics were there to put together a unique development," he said.

He studied some other reconstructions of old buildings elsewhere in Canada and the United States before deciding to proceed with the conversion of this underutilized building into a heritage-style property.

"It’s always been a focal point in the neighbourhood and we wanted to build on that," he said.

Kassner-Goodspeed Architects Ltd. handled design, while Martin Developments Ltd. is the general contractor. DTZ Barnicke is the leasing agent for the ground-floor commercial component.

Peppermint Properties is managing the Almon Lofts.

Jstaleness
Mar 5, 2010, 4:59 PM
from News957.com

It's been more than two years since it was approved to be built, and today the developer behind the Twisted Sisters development in downtown Halifax says it's still on.

"Actually its one of our most favourite projects that is on our books," says Navid Saberi with United Gulf Developments.

There had been rumours that the land where the Twisted Sisters are destined for, was up for sale.

Saberi says his company has three big projects ongoing, which is delaying the Twisted Sisters project.

And he says he doesn't anticipate anyone offering to take over the project.

"They better have a deep pocket," laughed Saberi. "It's a big project, so the number of the people who can be interested in doing the project is not very many."

He says the plan is to start design drawing in a year and break ground in two years time.

someone123
Mar 5, 2010, 7:46 PM
Good news, but disappointing that it's taking so long for this development to move forward. Part of what is annoying about this is that the site has sat empty for years now, quietly detracting from the downtown.

-Harlington-
Mar 5, 2010, 7:55 PM
i though that project was done and gone considering the amount of time between now and when it was approved.
i like that the developers haven't forgot about us and everything but come on 2 years?
we have to walk by those huge gray holes in the ground for another 2 years.:sly:
oh well at least its something about it.

Wishblade
Mar 5, 2010, 8:57 PM
I just thought I'd mention that Cafe Chianti which burnt down a month or 2 ago is moving to new digs on Barrington st due to repairs being far too slow. This is atleast a little more good news for that street.

Barrington south
Mar 5, 2010, 9:11 PM
the south end of Barrington is doing great...been steadily improving since 02 if not before....it's the "heritage district" that is the hurting unit

worldlyhaligonian
Mar 5, 2010, 10:55 PM
Lol.

This is somewhat good news... I hope that these other projects get finished... one of them being the Waterton.

sdm
Mar 6, 2010, 12:18 AM
from News957.com

It's been more than two years since it was approved to be built, and today the developer behind the Twisted Sisters development in downtown Halifax says it's still on.

"Actually its one of our most favourite projects that is on our books," says Navid Saberi with United Gulf Developments.

There had been rumours that the land where the Twisted Sisters are destined for, was up for sale.

Saberi says his company has three big projects ongoing, which is delaying the Twisted Sisters project.

And he says he doesn't anticipate anyone offering to take over the project.

"They better have a deep pocket," laughed Saberi. "It's a big project, so the number of the people who can be interested in doing the project is not very many."

He says the plan is to start design drawing in a year and break ground in two years time.

Well the development agreement expires next spring, so not sure how he plans to break ground in 2years?

Dmajackson
Mar 6, 2010, 12:39 AM
Good to hear the Texpark Towers are still on the minds of United Gulf.

Other than Waterton does anyone know the other projects they have under construction? All I know i they own a bunch of land here in Bedford but all of it is still proposed and not active.

kph06
Mar 6, 2010, 5:51 AM
Good to hear the Texpark Towers are still on the minds of United Gulf.

Other than Waterton does anyone know the other projects they have under construction? All I know i they own a bunch of land here in Bedford but all of it is still proposed and not active.

One must be his massive house he is slowly building on the Northwest Arm.

Haliguy
Mar 6, 2010, 5:12 PM
Another minor point...when he says the Heitage Trust can't be blammed for the Twisted Sisters not being being built because it was eventually approved. That is BS... the Heritage Trust had lot to do with it. It was held up for two years by then things had changed that made the project uneconomical.

planarchy
Mar 6, 2010, 6:28 PM
Another minor point...when he says the Heitage Trust can't be blammed for the Twisted Sisters not being being built because it was eventually approved. That is BS... the Heritage Trust had lot to do with it. It was held up for two years by then things had changed that made the project uneconomical.

HT certainly had something to do with it, but United Gulf is sketchy at best. They just can't seem to get their act together, perhaps take on much more than they can handle and the results show. Quality of construction on some of there projects is quite poor, Waterton towers doesn't seem to be well planned, and with the MSVU Motherhouse they left a mess and worked hard to cover it up. As much as I like the architect's vision for this project, I really wonder how many corners they could cut in the process of finishing this - especially in regards to exterior finishes. At the same time, I still think the city NEEDS this project to happen. I just wish someone else was in charge!!

Haliguy
Mar 6, 2010, 7:03 PM
HT certainly had something to do with it, but United Gulf is sketchy at best. They just can't seem to get their act together, perhaps take on much more than they can handle and the results show. Quality of construction on some of there projects is quite poor, Waterton towers doesn't seem to be well planned, and with the MSVU Motherhouse they left a mess and worked hard to cover it up. As much as I like the architect's vision for this project, I really wonder how many corners they could cut in the process of finishing this - especially in regards to exterior finishes. At the same time, I still think the city NEEDS this project to happen. I just wish someone else was in charge!!


Vaild points..I'm dissapointed in this company I thought they were better than that..but your right things like Waterton was clearly not well thought out and the Motherhouse was a bit of a disaster.

Dmajackson
Mar 13, 2010, 2:02 PM
Halifax home to too many ‘moonscapes’
Grass over empty lots, business group says
By CLARE MELLOR Business Reporter
Sat. Mar 13 - 4:54 AM

Owners of vacant city lots should be forced to make them green, says Bernard Smith. And the manager of the Spring Garden Road Area Business Association is also floating the idea of a special tax rate on these undeveloped lots.

"There’s not a lot of rubble on Spring Garden, thank God, but generally, throughout the city, I’m suggesting that any vacant lot should be grassed over," he said Friday.

"It is not satisfactory to leave parts of our downtown undeveloped."

One of the most obvious undeveloped sites in downtown Halifax is the old Tex-Park lot, which is the future site of a 27-storey development known as the Twisted Sisters.

"That whole block is just moonscape, isn’t it? And we’ve got bits of moonscape in other spots. Probably all of them are slated for development but they are not slated for development this spring. Anything that is not immediately about to be developed, literally worked on, should be grassed over," Smith said

The head of the company that owns the Tex-Park site said Friday that the site is not vacant, and is being used as a parking lot.

"(Greening) is a very nice thing to do for the properties that are not being used for any purpose . . . but this one is already being used for parking," said Navid Saberi of United Gulf Developments Ltd.

Construction on the site is still a couple of years away, he said.

United Gulf Developments had to move on to other projects because of the length of time it took to get the go-ahead for the downtown development, he said.

"We battled that for five years, and that was brutal and that was very costly," Saberi said.

"We did not know when that property would be ready for development so we had to make other plans. We started other projects, and when you start other projects you have to finish them."

Coun. Dawn Sloane (Halifax Downtown) could not be reached Friday.

Grassing over empty lots "is probably not a bad idea," said Paul MacKinnon, executive director of the Halifax Downtown Business Commission.

"I don’t know whether the city would be able to mandate green space but it certainly would be something that would be interesting to look into," he said Friday.

MacKinnon said there are a number of vacant lots in the downtown area, including one on Granville Street where the old Kelly’s building once stood. There are plans there for a second tower behind the TD Canada Trust tower, he said

Another lot on the corner of Granville and Salter streets, across from Mountain Equipment Co-op, has sat vacant for years, he said.

"That would be a great spot for a little park downtown. Now whether you could force the landlord to do that, I don’t know. In terms of some sort of landscaping requirement, I think that is entirely reasonable," he said.

There is about to be a "big hole" right in the middle of downtown where the former Chronicle Herald building stood, he said.

"Presumably, or hopefully, what is going to happen there is that it is going to quickly be turned into a construction site for a new convention centre. But if, in fact, the province or the city does not fund it, I think there is a great fear that maybe that property will sit for a long, long time as well," MacKinnon said

New development rules recently approved by Halifax Regional Municipality are expected to shorten the amount of time it takes to get new developments approved, he said.

( cmellor@herald.ca )

spaustin
Mar 13, 2010, 3:19 PM
It's not a bad idea. I would prefer though stricter rules regarding demolitions and parking lots so that we would hopefully end up with fewer lots like this in the first place. Sometimes a building is too far gone and needs to come down asap. The Kelly Building was in that situation. In other cases, however, demolition happens a tad early. There was absolutely no good reason to demolish Trinity Church. A big part of the problem is parking lots are so damned attractive. Cheap taxes, no infrastructure and guaranteed income. It's a no brainer for developers who are speculating. We need to change that. We could tax parking lots differently, but I would really like to see requirements that commercial parking lots be paved and landscaped. Paved parking with curbs and grass isn't really a great use for Downtown land and isn't going to win any beauty pageants, but it's way better than the muddy gravel lots that are currently allowed to exist (Trinity Church, TexPark, lot next to the Vic site on Hollis, HRM's own former Infirmary site property, etc). Requiring commercial parking lots be built to certain standards would make them less ugly and less financially attractive. Had there been rules like that, Trinity Church might still be standing, perhaps rented out to community groups, until the tower project for the site is actually ready to go forward.

coolmillion
Mar 13, 2010, 4:48 PM
I agree with you spaustin. In cases where demolition has occurred, an alternative to "grassing over" which, let's face it, doesn't serve much purpose, would be to encourage the temporary use of the space for a community garden. Especially downtown where backyard gardens are in short supply for condo and apartment peeps, growing space could be pretty desirable. This could be a stipulation of a development agreement - from the time agreement is being considered until construction begins, a portion of the site could be set aside for gardening. This would be very cheap too. The developer could put in raised beds and charge people 10 bucks per plot per year... or make free. EAC and other community groups would be all over this. It's been done in Vancouver for a while...

Jonovision
Mar 13, 2010, 7:31 PM
I actually really like that idea coolmillion. I think just grassing them over would be redundant and probably wouldn't look all that great. But if they were turned into little community gardens/gathering spots it would create usable green space that is always changing that could act as a centre for urban community life.

haligonia
Mar 13, 2010, 7:47 PM
:previous: :tup:

-Harlington-
Mar 13, 2010, 8:37 PM
yeah, well pretty much anything will be good with me maybe make a temperary park or garden like coolmillion suggested because something has to be done with those ugly lots, parkings fine but there still ugly aha.

Jstaleness
Mar 13, 2010, 10:30 PM
From The Burnside News

Corporate Knights Magazine has unveiled its fourth-annual Corporate Knights Most Sustainable Cities in Canada list and Halifax has ranked second.

“We’re pleased to continue to rank in the top tier of medium-sized cities with Corporate Knights. Our municipality is committed to being a healthy, sustainable, vibrant community.

Over the last few years we have invested more than $7 million in energy efficiency projects. We continue to work towards a sustainable future for all citizens,” says Mayor Peter Kelly.

At more than 5,600 square kilometers, HRM is geographically one of the largest municipalities in Canada. Halifax was noted as having the best waste diversion levels, but this success was tempered by having the most sprawl, the lowest population density and the least green space of the considered set.

HRMbyDesign is a priority initiative that takes direct aim at these issues. “HRMbyDesign’s densification strategy and Neighbourhood Greenprint will ensure many more people will be living and working sustainably in our urbanized core,” says Andy Fillmore, HRM’s Urban Design Project Manager. “The recently adopted Downtown Plan will mean that a walkable, beautiful, mixed-use downtown in conjunction with a streamlined new development approval process will draw future growth downtown rather than to suburban and rural areas.”

Founded in 2002, Corporate Knights Inc. is an independent Canadian media company focused on promoting and reinforcing sustainable development in Canada. Its comprehensive ranking identifies Canadian cities whose practices leave the smallest environmental footprint possible and create a healthy, thriving population.

Cities are assessed based on five categories: Ecological Integrity; Economic Security; Governance and Empowerment; Infrastructure and Built Environment and Social Well-Being.

fenwick16
Mar 13, 2010, 11:13 PM
From The Burnside News

HRMbyDesign is a priority initiative that takes direct aim at these issues. “HRMbyDesign’s densification strategy and Neighbourhood Greenprint will ensure many more people will be living and working sustainably in our urbanized core,” says Andy Fillmore, HRM’s Urban Design Project Manager. “The recently adopted Downtown Plan will mean that a walkable, beautiful, mixed-use downtown in conjunction with a streamlined new development approval process will draw future growth downtown rather than to suburban and rural areas.”

If the downtown were built as displayed in the HRMby Design documents then it might lead to beautification of the downtown core but I don't see how introducing such severe height controls is going to lead to densification of the downtown core. Such height controls will drive up rents and condo prices and could very well have the opposite effect. This is a question of architectural ideology versus economics. I am afraid that economics will trump architectural ideology. If the aim was to densify the downtown core then higher buildings should have been allowed. Here is a map (page 6 & 7) of height limits in the downtown core: http://www.halifax.ca/capitaldistrict/documents/APPENDIXAMAPS.pdf .

someone123
Mar 13, 2010, 11:49 PM
I really think that taxes are the way to fix this issue. Greenspace or community gardens do not fix the root problem of developers ignoring land and often sites just are not suited for those uses (not enough sunlight, no soil, and so on.

Right now the HRM encourages developers to tear down empty buildings as soon as possible to avoid paying the taxes. If empty lot taxes were higher we'd see developers keeping their buildings and hunting for tenants to keep around until they are ready to develop.

It's also completely true that the glacial pace and randomness of the old approval process was expensive. If there were not such huge delays before construction during the past decade we almost certainly would have seen more development downtown. It's entirely possible that we'd have the brewery tower and the two United Gulf towers by now.

I don't think many people understand this relationship between obstructionism and failed or delayed development, empty lots, and lost tax revenue and economic activity but hopefully HbD will help a little. For me this is the most frustrating thing about Halifax - it has some advantages but can be a deeply closed-minded and conservative city so in the end it is often mediocre. This does seem to be improving, but it's really too bad to look back on a partially lost decade.

someone123
Mar 13, 2010, 11:52 PM
Such height controls will drive up rents and condo prices and could very well have the opposite effect. This is a question of architectural ideology versus economics. I am afraid that economics will trump architectural ideology. If the aim was to densify the downtown core then higher buildings should have been allowed.

Well, a lot of the cost of developing downtown is land prices and part of the conjecture is that these were often inflated for sites that would possibly have supported large highrises.

If it were up to me, HbD would allow for taller buildings in general but I nevertheless believe that clarity and a faster, more efficient process are much, much more important than whether something can be 10 or 30 storeys. If developers know what the constraints are they can develop profitable lowrise buildings.

fenwick16
Mar 14, 2010, 12:08 AM
Well, a lot of the cost of developing downtown is land prices and part of the conjecture is that these were often inflated for sites that would possibly have supported large highrises.

If it were up to me, HbD would allow for taller buildings in general but I nevertheless believe that clarity and a faster, more efficient process are much, much more important than whether something can be 10 or 30 storeys. If developers know what the constraints are they can develop profitable lowrise buildings.

I agree with you on this point, that is, if land prices are driven down because of the height restrictions then this will mitigate some of this effect. Do you have any information on building cost per square foot versus number of floors. I am also assuming that the construction price per square foot decreases with the number of storeys in a building; maybe this is a false assumption on my part.

Either way, I really hope that Dartmouth will continue to allow skyscrapers since I personally like the appearance of a well designed skyscraper. Here is a link to a thread on the top 25 skyscraper proposals: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=179543 . There are some amazing designs. These proposals are nothing like the brutalistic skyscrapers of the 60's and 70's (although it should be noted that there were a lot of well designed skyscrapers built in Toronto and Montreal in the 60's and 70' that were not concrete slabs).

someone123
Mar 14, 2010, 12:39 AM
Mostly I think highrises are economical in terms of land value, transportation costs, amenities shared in large condos, and so on, not in terms of direct construction. Wood frame is cheaper than concrete and once you go up high enough construction costs skyrocket.

Most developers in Halifax seem to like to build 12-30 storey buildings downtown if given the option. This is probably the natural range that is the most profitable.

DigitalNinja
Mar 14, 2010, 9:38 PM
I agree with you when you say 12-30 is most profitable, but it would also depend on how much area the building takes up as well. Something that is a big square 30 story box, with cheap windows, etc... Would be most profitable, but would also look like crap :P

-Harlington-
Mar 16, 2010, 1:57 PM
HRM studies Khyber’s future
Five scenarios up for review before presentation to council

Ryan Taplin/Metro Halifax
Pedestrians walk past the Khyber Building on Barrington Street yesterday.
ALEX BOUTILIER
FOR METRO HALIFAX
March 16, 2010 12:02 a.m.

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The future of one of Halifax’s most iconic arts and music venues is being examined by HRM staff.

A feasibility report on the Khyber, located at 1588 Barrington St., was released by the municipality yesterday. The report outlines five possible operating scenarios for the building, which will be examined by staff over the next four to six weeks. Staff recommendations will then be made to Halifax regional council.

Currently, HRM owns and operates the building while the Khyber Arts Society rents the second floor. Four of the possible scenarios maintain HRM ownership, with different possibilities for the building’s operation. One scenario has KAS taking over ownership and operation.

But KAS chair Garry Kennedy doesn’t think that is possible in the short term.

“That would be too much for us right now,” said Kennedy, noting the report states it would cost approximately $626,000 to bring the building up to code. “We just can’t even dream about something like that.”

Christine Lavoie of HRM’s Culture and Heritage Development acknowledges KAS doesn’t have the capital to take over the building now. But she said the report also mentions “evolution of options” — meaning KAS could work within one scenario with an aim to another.

“We know that financially (KAS) can’t do it right now,” Lavoie said. “But it doesn’t mean that they can’t do it in the future ... Maybe the option isn’t to pick A over B or C or D, maybe it’s over a period of time it moves from a scenario to the next.”

Whichever options are recommended to council, Lavoie stresses the Khyber is integral to the social, cultural and economic revitalization of Barrington Street and the downtown core.

“It’s like a springboard,” she said. “It would have a huge effect. It would be full of ... people who are creative and want to see things moving.”

Keith P.
Mar 16, 2010, 10:36 PM
I remain absolutely befuddled why the KAS seems to be getting such preferential treatment in regard to that building, when they have failed to live up to their obligations in the past and allowed it to fall into disrepair. The comments of the HRM staffer do not give me any confidence that an unbiased report will be presented to council either. Put it up for bids and get it off the backs of taxpayers.

Dmajackson
Mar 17, 2010, 12:27 AM
Boardwalk Construction:

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2730/4439657352_dc478b98b5_b.jpg

Maritime Museum of the Atlantic Renovations:

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2791/4438883077_d165f09b72_b.jpg

Chebucto Mosque:

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2796/4438886429_7c39b8c0bc_b.jpg

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4020/4439665348_eaa8315e39_b.jpg

Windsor @ Almon:

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4072/4438890175_de4c0b8459_b.jpg

Robie St. Frenchy's (demolished following fire last year):

http://farm5.static.flickr.com/4068/4439668710_738d6fa786_b.jpg

coolmillion
Mar 17, 2010, 1:39 AM
Oooh! Windsor at Almon looks great! I've been away several months and only recently found out about this renovation. Any idea of what to expect in terms of retail? Thanks for the updates DJ!

Jstaleness
Mar 17, 2010, 1:47 AM
Windsor and Almon did turn out nice. Now we just need to get rid of those nasty over head wires.

haligonia
Mar 17, 2010, 1:53 AM
Windsor at Almon is looking good! So much crisper and cleaner than it used to be. What's planed for the MMA? At first I thought they were just renovating the Devonian Wing (wooden part facing the water) but now I see the majority of the museum is being worked on.

someone123
Mar 17, 2010, 6:32 AM
Wow, I'm impressed with how much the Windsor and Almon building stands out now.

I'd like to see something new go in across the street. If I remember correctly, it's an abandoned gas station that's been that way for years. Is there any way for the city to go after land owners to make them pay for remediation? Presumably that's the holdup.

Keith P.
Mar 17, 2010, 12:09 PM
Wow, I'm impressed with how much the Windsor and Almon building stands out now.

I'd like to see something new go in across the street. If I remember correctly, it's an abandoned gas station that's been that way for years. Is there any way for the city to go after land owners to make them pay for remediation? Presumably that's the holdup.

Aside from the cosmetic reno of the building at Windsor and Almon (it looks less impressive in person than it does in the pics, unfortunately) the other 3 corners are the very good Brooklyn restaurant, Maritime Home and Garden in the former Irving (who seem to have put down roots and have made the place look not too bad), and the Forum parking lot.

worldlyhaligonian
Mar 17, 2010, 3:00 PM
Aside from the cosmetic reno of the building at Windsor and Almon (it looks less impressive in person than it does in the pics, unfortunately) the other 3 corners are the very good Brooklyn restaurant, Maritime Home and Garden in the former Irving (who seem to have put down roots and have made the place look not too bad), and the Forum parking lot.

I would like to see a development go in on the corner of the Forum parking lot... something 9-10 stories would be great.

halifaxboyns
Mar 19, 2010, 5:57 PM
To who ever posted the 15 proposals - great link and thanks for posting it. The Penny Lane Project (which is number 18) is well underway - but as far as I know is still vacant - no renters. That's a big storey around Calgary. Don't know the status of the other ones; I probably should since I live in Downtown Calgary! LOL

Love the new building at Windsor and North - just wish it was bigger. I'd say 5 to 6 stories on that corner would've been nice.

I think if people are going to want to see taller buildings in HRM - you need to think region wide. HRM is all the old cities and towns of the Halifax Region (Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, Sackville and the county); so I've always believed that downtown HRM should not just be Halifax downtown, but Dartmouth too.

Dartmouth, unfortunately, has viewplanes on it too - which caps building heights yet again. I've never understood the viewplane from the golf course - which is a privately held piece of land; not public. So i'd start asking questions about that and get that one viewplane removed for the Dartmouth side. If you use HRM's GIS map and see what area the brightwood viewplane covers in Dartmouth, it's almost 80% of downtown Dartmouth. If that one viewplane were removed, you could do up an HRM by design project for downtown Dartmouth and allow taller buildings there too. That way, it won't just be about getting more people onto the Peninsula everymorning - you'd have people going to DT Dartmouth too. This would then support the idea of a high speed ferry from places like Bedford or Armdale, like what has been discussed - since people would be going to both "downtown's".

Thoughts?

Also - i'd like to see some office development go up in Burnside, particularly close to the yauct club. This would then create an even broader change in direction of traffic - which could support high speed ferries there too (or BRT).

alps
Mar 19, 2010, 8:16 PM
:previous: Windsor and North is a renovation, not a new construction. Used to house an antique store that I think moved a couple streets nearby. It looks very sharp to me but I'll have to check it out in person sometime soon. Here's a before/after:

http://i174.photobucket.com/albums/w81/Hurland/c9756286.jpg

(photo sources: Bedford_DJ and Google Street View)

I think Toronto tried to implement the sort of thing you're talking about at one point. Consider why everyone heads into the peninsula every morning - wouldn't building taller and bigger in the suburbs make the problem worse? I agree that Dartmouth should see intensification too but moreso the area within the circ than peripheral places like Burnside where you'd still need a car.

Jonovision
Mar 19, 2010, 10:15 PM
A nice positive article from Peter Kelly today in Halifax News Net.

Bright future comes with the spring in downtown Halifax

PETER KELLY (TAKE FIVE WITH THE MAYOR)
Halifax News Net

I’d like to share with you the optimism I feel for the future of downtown Halifax. My confidence stems from the number of major development opportunities on the drawing board as well as the potential for more to come.
From my window here at City Hall, I can see the site of what regional council and I anticipate will eventually be a key driver of the urban core’s rejuvenation — the $300-million Nova Centre.
The developer calls Nova Centre “a tangible expression of confidence in the future of Halifax as the pre-eminent business centre in the Atlantic Region.”
The centre is earmarked for the sites of the former Chronicle-Herald and Midtown buildings. Demolition crews are clearing the area in anticipation of the new centre proceeding, once all necessary financing and permits are in place.
The developer’s design includes commercial, retail and residential components, plus office and hotel towers. Anchoring the 1.25-million sq. ft. proposal is a trade/convention centre. It would be a huge incentive in attracting events from HRM, across Canada and abroad.
While the proposed Nova Centre is a key component in the downtown’s future prosperity, it’s by no means the only one. There are a number of other major proposals in the offing which add to my optimism. For example, the owner of the 18-storey TD building is planning to double the size of the complex to meet a growing demand for Class A office space.
Large towers are also proposed for the site of the Discovery Centre and the Roy Building while new futures are being discussed for locations like the former home of Sam the Record Man and the Carsand-Mosher location. Also last week, council sent for public hearing a proposed five-storey addition at the City Centre Atlantic site, a block from busy Spring Garden Road.
Council’s initiatives are incentives for making the urban core a good place to live and work, initiatives like HRMbyDesign, our landmark urban design plan, and the Barrington Street Heritage Conservation District Revitalization Plan, which encourages conservation, restoration and commercial revitalization of historic buildings, streetscapes and public spaces.
When these projects and proposals become realities, they will add to the liveliness and prosperity of the downtown, causing spinoff benefits for the entire municipality.

Keith P.
Mar 19, 2010, 10:39 PM
Don't believe a word of it. This is the same person who voted against the United Gulf proposal.

Wishblade
Mar 19, 2010, 11:55 PM
Don't believe a word of it. This is the same person who voted against the United Gulf proposal.

I think we can cut him some slack. Its been a long time since that happened and perhaps he has changed a lot and is more educated on the subject now.

Empire
Mar 20, 2010, 2:15 AM
I think we can cut him some slack. Its been a long time since that happened and perhaps he has changed a lot and is more educated on the subject now.

A leopard never changes it's spots.

fenwick16
Mar 20, 2010, 4:42 AM
I would like to give Mayor Kelly the benefit of the doubt on this one. I don't see why he would go on the record by supporting the convention centre ( http://www.halifaxnewsnet.ca/index.cfm?sid=332890&sc=611 ) when he is sure to annoy the Save our View and Heritage Trust groups (with proponents of these groups in his own council).

On the plus side, Mayor Kelly was able to push the Harbour Solutions project through. If Mayor Kelly comes up with a stadium project in the near future then I will start to think that Halifax has a great Mayor.

I have to wonder how any politician can survive in the Halifax area when they have to deal with the Heritage Trust and Save our View groups and also promote the city to developers. It sounds like a real juggling act. Maybe I am being unduly optimistic, but I have to place my hopes on some politician in the Halifax area.

someone123
Mar 22, 2010, 2:45 AM
There was some discussion in Allnovascotia today about the redevelopment of the NFB and Venus Pizza buildings along Barrington. Apparently there's a $12M project being considered with 52 apartments, but the developer is looking for $800,000 in incentives from the HRM instead of the $680,000 they are offering.

Kind of weird because the difference in incentives is only equivalent to 1% of the project's budget. I doubt that cost estimates are that accurate. Another issue in the article is that Venus Pizza isn't next to the NFB building as they state.

Either way, this is another development that I really hope moves forward. I dislike the idea of the city making special deals with individual developers but this is a huge scar downtown right now and it is totally worth a few hundred thousand dollars to fix. Barrington desperately needs new investment right now.

fenwick16
Mar 22, 2010, 3:35 AM
There was some discussion in Allnovascotia today about the redevelopment of the NFB and Venus Pizza buildings along Barrington. Apparently there's a $12M project being considered with 52 apartments, but the developer is looking for $800,000 in incentives from the HRM instead of the $680,000 they are offering.

Kind of weird because the difference in incentives is only equivalent to 1% of the project's budget. I doubt that cost estimates are that accurate. Another issue in the article is that Venus Pizza isn't next to the NFB building as they state.

Either way, this is another development that I really hope moves forward. I dislike the idea of the city making special deals with individual developers but this is a huge scar downtown right now and it is totally worth a few hundred thousand dollars to fix. Barrington desperately needs new investment right now.

I just read the article, the developer is stating that since the NFB buildinng has been exposed to the elements for 20 years that it will require more expense to preserve the facade. At $12 million, this is a significant project which will create more residential units downtown. I hope that it will go ahead.

Jstaleness
Mar 22, 2010, 12:09 PM
Mayor Kelly is on Maritime Morning as we speak talking about new trade centre.

fenwick16
Mar 22, 2010, 12:55 PM
Mayor Kelly is on Maritime Morning as we speak talking about new trade centre.

Could you listen to (watch?) this and provide updates later? I am very interested in this but I don't have access to it up here in Ontario.

DigitalNinja
Mar 22, 2010, 1:05 PM
You can listen to it online http://www.news957.com/

Jstaleness
Mar 22, 2010, 1:20 PM
His portion has wrapped up for the most part. He seems to really keen on pushing this through! He knows that this will be a huge money maker for the city and province. He made references to the view planes and how the new trade will not impede them. He was excited that up to 10,000 people could be in the complex at its busiest points.
He also spoke about the other developments downtown that are currently parking lots. He wants the developers to begin work asap etc. He is fine for grassing them over for now of course but doesn't want to be a long term fix.
The CFL was brought up by one of callers and here is a basic summary of what Kelly explained. He is for a Stadium. He understands this city needs one. The issue seems to be is can the city make profit off of it. The numbers are being crunched I guess. He said 4 of the eight current CFL teams make money, 2 losing and 2 breaking even. Where would Halifax fit in is another question. I think he agrees that the commons isn't the place for concerts. If a group (I believe the city is working with 2 now) can prove that a Stadium in Halifax used for Football, Soccer and Concerts etc. would make money then its just a matter of where to build.

I enjoyed it this morning. I hope his attitude toward downtown development is for real and it wasn't all talk. If he's for real than he has the ability to get this city to where it could be.

Finally, If anyone else listened and can remember more key points than I have recalled please feel free to add as I'm sure there are a few that I missed.

planarchy
Mar 22, 2010, 2:16 PM
I would like to give Mayor Kelly the benefit of the doubt on this one. I don't see why he would go on the record by supporting the convention centre ( http://www.halifaxnewsnet.ca/index.cfm?sid=332890&sc=611 ) when he is sure to annoy the Save our View and Heritage Trust groups (with proponents of these groups in his own council).

On the plus side, Mayor Kelly was able to push the Harbour Solutions project through. If Mayor Kelly comes up with a stadium project in the near future then I will start to think that Halifax has a great Mayor.

I hope his attitude toward downtown development is for real and it wasn't all talk. If he's for real than he has the ability to get this city to where it could be.

I have to disagree with all of this - Peter Kelly has been in since 2000. After 10 years, maybe he is starting to get it, but so what? It has been 10 years! If it takes this long to get control and provide some leadership, why would anyone think that he is actually capable of forming a progressive vision for the future of the HRM? I would argue that he is actually only now comfortable with ideas that are already a decade old! Is this really a good way to manage a city?

planarchy
Mar 22, 2010, 2:20 PM
I also have to wonder if he is thinking this is his last chance to leave some mark on the city after 2 terms of nothingness. He's halfway through his third term, and perhaps has decided he will not try for a fourth. Why else would be suddenly develop opinions when he hasn't has any on anything in 10 years.

Jstaleness
Mar 22, 2010, 2:46 PM
I understand that the last 10 years have been very dim as far as new developments in the downtown. I can't use the term "stirring the pot" because it's a bit too strong but he's at least speaking publicly about how he wants the new Trade Centre and he wants change in Halifax. People are really talking about this out there!
There are a lot of old fashion people who still believe that if the Mayor likes it than it must be good enough. Maybe these people won't be so against development if they see their leader heading in that direction. Again, I hope its for real and he truly uses his powers to convince the other counselors that this is the right move. A new building of any size in any of those vacant lots will generate more revenue than 15-20 cars parking there all day and I think he's finally seeing that.
He is the one that's either going to prove my statements true or false.

sdm
Mar 22, 2010, 3:38 PM
Peter Kelly is making it sound like the developers that have approved projects are just sitting there wasting time.

Problem is they aren't, its the market conditions and the restrictions place on projects with regards to lending that is hurting progress.

someone123
Mar 22, 2010, 9:11 PM
Problem is they aren't, its the market conditions and the restrictions place on projects with regards to lending that is hurting progress.

It's sad, because lending conditions were a great a few years ago, back when everything was in limbo waiting for URB decisions and so on. It was easy to see this coming a mile away.

Keith P.
Mar 22, 2010, 9:27 PM
His portion has wrapped up for the most part. He seems to really keen on pushing this through! He knows that this will be a huge money maker for the city and province.

I didn't hear it, but just heard a news report that he was touting that a 2500 seat performing arts center be included in the development. I don't think that has been on the table before, and as I recall, buried somewhere in this thread is a news story from a year or two ago saying that the previous govt told him that was not going to happen, and to get with their program. He then signed on.

He better not end up scuttling this project because of his desire to have a new concert hall included. Kelly needs to learn how to keep his mouth shut sometimes.

1ajs
Mar 22, 2010, 10:19 PM
stubled across this bunch of construction pics that might be interesting to u guys from one of the urbn explorers in halifax http://cpharmon.blogspot.com/2010/03/downtown-halifax-photos.html

sdm
Mar 22, 2010, 10:44 PM
I didn't hear it, but just heard a news report that he was touting that a 2500 seat performing arts center be included in the development. I don't think that has been on the table before, and as I recall, buried somewhere in this thread is a news story from a year or two ago saying that the previous govt told him that was not going to happen, and to get with their program. He then signed on.

He better not end up scuttling this project because of his desire to have a new concert hall included. Kelly needs to learn how to keep his mouth shut sometimes.

Bingo, Kellys way out of it i bet.

sdm
Mar 22, 2010, 10:45 PM
It's sad, because lending conditions were a great a few years ago, back when everything was in limbo waiting for URB decisions and so on. It was easy to see this coming a mile away.

Yes, and it appears what everyone saw as happening did.

Kelly was just so wrong in his approach today in claiming developers are not living up to their end of the bargin.

Funny, i remember Kelly voting no on a lot of projects.

someone123
Mar 22, 2010, 10:52 PM
I didn't hear it, but just heard a news report that he was touting that a 2500 seat performing arts center be included in the development. I don't think that has been on the table before, and as I recall, buried somewhere in this thread is a news story from a year or two ago saying that the previous govt told him that was not going to happen, and to get with their program. He then signed on.

Even when they're successful in bundling things they usually get a useless watered-down version of whatever they wanted. Halifax has all kinds of middling concert halls and theatres. There's no point in building another one unless it is a high quality venue and that would require its own multi-year planning and funding process.

One also has to wonder where they'd put the thing in this development. The site is not that large and the development is already at the upper end of what it could support.

Love the idea of a new performing arts centre for Halifax but to bring it up at this stage for the convention centre seems asinine.

someone123
Mar 22, 2010, 10:55 PM
Funny, i remember Kelly voting no on a lot of projects.

Anybody in the media holding him accountable for past actions?

My guess would be no.

sdm
Mar 23, 2010, 1:12 AM
Anybody in the media holding him accountable for past actions?

My guess would be no.

No that would be too easy. In recent memory he voted nay on Halkirk, UG. He calimed he would have voted nay on Waterside if he had of been present to vote, and i believe Hollis and Morris (not sure). Those are just the ones that come first into my head.

Jstaleness
Mar 23, 2010, 11:14 AM
Love the idea of a new performing arts centre for Halifax but to bring it up at this stage for the convention centre seems asinine.
Couldn't the old trade be converted into some kind of performing arts centre? Is there already plans for the old center?

fenwick16
Mar 23, 2010, 11:56 AM
Couldn't the old trade be converted into some kind of performing arts centre? Is there already plans for the old center?

I think that the main exhibition space in the current convention centre is the Metro Centre rink which can be converted to exhibition space by removing some seating sections. I don't think that there would be enough room in the meetings room building (this might be converted to offices).

In my opinion, the HRM would do far better by putting money towards a stadium as opposed to a 2500 seat performing arts centre since the HRM already has the Neptune Theater and Rebecca Cohn Auditorium.

Is there some way to access the interview with Mayor Kelly? (Is it in some archive?)

fenwick16
Mar 23, 2010, 12:35 PM
The following story was in the National Post (copied below) http://www.financialpost.com/news-sectors/story.html?id=2715420#ixzz0j0CEIYxq . The story makes the following statemnet about the HRM office market: Halifax was the only major market to show improvement in the first quarter, a fact chalked up to its broad-based economy, including everything tom the military to government to education. The city's vacancy rate actually declined from 9.6% a year ago to 9.4% in the current quarter.


Pace of office vacancy increases slows

Garry Marr, National Post Published: Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Office vacancy rates across the country continued to rise during the first quarter but the pace is slowing down, indicating that some stability may be returning to Canada's commercial real estate markets, according to CB Richard Ellis Ltd.

The real estate company said the national office vacancy rate rose to 10.1% in the first quarter this year, up from 7.5% a year ago.

However, vacancy rates were only up slightly from the 9.9% at the end of the fourth quarter of 2009.

John O'Bryan, vice-chairman, CB Richard Ellis, said the small increase from the fourth quarter is an indication the commercial real estate market in Canada may be through the worst of the recession.

"A more promising employment picture, slowly improving leasing activity and the residual impact those factors have had on the country's commercial real estate market is a welcome change from 2009 conditions," said Mr. O'Bryan. "Expect to see a slow recovery progressively in 2010. With a few notable exceptions, the majority of Canada's markets appear to be over the hump."

Sublet space flooding the market continues to be a problem but is no longer growing rapidly. The percentage of vacant office space that was sublet space was 21.9% in the first quarter, up from 20.8% a year earlier.

Across the country, vacancy rates rose in most of the major markets.

In Vancouver. the overall vacancy rate rose to 10.2% in the first quarter from 7.2% a year ago. The city's suburban area has added most of the new vacant space, said CB Richard Ellis. The vacancy rate in the city's downtown core rose to 6% from 4.2% a year ago but suburban

Vancouver's vacancy rate has risen to 14.7% from 10.7% during the same period.

Commercial property in Alberta's two largest city continue to be hit hard by weakness in the national gas sector. In Edmonton the overall vacancy rate has risen to 10.6% in the first quarter from 6.5% a year earlier.

Calgary has faced the additional problem of a huge bump in the supply of office space with 2.7 million square feet to hit the market in the next 18 months. Already the vacancy rate in the city has climbed to 14.9% in the first quarter from 7.9% a year earlier.

Sublet space in Calgary continues to be a major problem with 38.1% of all vacant space sublets, the highest such percentage in the country.

In the largest office market in the country, CB Richard said market conditions are going to turn in favour of tenants over the next few years. The overall vacancy rate in Toronto climbed to 9.6% in the first quarter, up from 7.7% a year earlier.

In Montreal, the market has benefited from the fact there has been no significant office towers built in the downtown core over the last five years. Despite that fact, the vacancy rate in the city still rose to 10.7% in the first quarter from 8.8% a year earlier.

The nation's capital continues to benefit from the steady nature of government tenancies. The vacancy rate in Ottawa was a relatively low 5.4% in the first quarter, up from 5.1% a year earlier, but is expected to soften in the coming months with public sector cutbacks.

Halifax was the only major market to show improvement in the first quarter, a fact chalked up to its broad-based economy, including everything tom the military to government to education. The city's vacancy rate actually declined from 9.6% a year ago to 9.4% in the current quarter.

Read more: http://www.financialpost.com/news-sectors/story.html?id=2715420#ixzz0j0CEIYxq
The Financial Post is now on Facebook. Join our fan community today.

planarchy
Mar 23, 2010, 10:01 PM
Not sure if any one here has viewed this yet (or posted it), but I think most of you will find it amusing -

Hitler reacts to the Heritage Trust:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ybZJU94IVIA

This thing has been flying around in the last 24 hours.

someone123
Mar 23, 2010, 10:14 PM
Hah, that's great - I posted it in the Canada section, although it might not be interesting to people who don't understand the references.

By the way, there's a relatively new youtube tag you can put around your videos to embed them:

ybZJU94IVIA

It is a standard closed tag like image. Inside you put the alphanumeric code from the end of the YouTube url.

Keith P.
Mar 23, 2010, 10:56 PM
Hah, that's great - I posted it in the Canada section, although it might not be interesting to people who don't understand the references.

By the way, there's a relatively new youtube tag you can put around your videos to embed them:

ybZJU94IVIA

It is a standard closed tag like image. Inside you put the alphanumeric code from the end of the YouTube url.

Priceless! Thanks for the link.

cormiermax
Mar 24, 2010, 12:37 AM
Great video, really gave me a laugh :tup:

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 12:39 AM
Looks very professional in quality. Who would go to such an extreme to put this together? What bothers me is that the crazed man (Hittler) is for the convention centre and is verbally attacking the Heritage people. Although it is funny, there is a subliminal message; they are saying that Hittler and the Nazis are convention centre supporters and the heritage people are being attacked. So it is time for convention centre supporters to give up and move to Toronto. Sounds like it was made by people associated with the Heritage Trust (i.e. Halifax isn't Toronto).

Here are the tags for the video (sounds kind of fishy, also the person who made this video only has this one video on YouTube, so there is no way to know what other causes he is affiliated with):
Hitler reacts to Halifax Nova Scotia Heritage Trust Coalition to save the view Convention centre NDP politics Dexter Rodney MacDonald

Haven't these people set Halifax back far enough? I think we all need to catch on to their tricks so Halifax and Nova Scotia can have a more prosperous future.

PS: This isn't even original, somebody took a video from YouTube and just changed the words. I take back what I said, it isn't professional, it is just someone with the Heritage Trust stealing someone else's idea. Here's another form of the video that was uploaded September 19, 2009. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GuGqPKP3xw&feature=related

planarchy
Mar 24, 2010, 1:36 AM
Looks very professional in quality. Who would go to such an extreme to put this together? What bothers me is that the crazed man (Hittler) is for the convention centre and is verbally attacking the Heritage people. Although it is funny, there is a subliminal message; they are saying that Hittler and the Nazis are convention centre supporters and the heritage people are being attacked. So it is time for convention centre supporters to give up and move to Toronto. Sounds like it was made by people associated with the Heritage Trust (i.e. Halifax isn't Toronto).

Here are the tags for the video (sounds kind of fishy, also the person who made this video only has this one video on YouTube, so there is no way to know what other causes he is affiliated with):
Hitler reacts to Halifax Nova Scotia Heritage Trust Coalition to save the view Convention centre NDP politics Dexter Rodney MacDonald

Haven't these people set Halifax back far enough? I think we all need to catch on to their tricks so Halifax and Nova Scotia can have a more prosperous future.

PS: This isn't even original, somebody took a video from YouTube and just changed the words. I take back what I said, it isn't professional, it is just someone with the Heritage Trust stealing someone else's idea. Here's another form of the video that was uploaded September 19, 2009. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GuGqPKP3xw&feature=related

Geez Fenwick. Talk about over analyzing. And yes it isn't original - but I don't think it is someone from HT stealing ideas. This clip has been used for a large number of "re-dubs". You really are a conspiracy theorist.:yuck:

You may find it hard to believe, but HT are not a bunch of people trying to squash all your dreams. They actually do believe in what they fight for - and while I don't agree with much of their rhetoric, much of the "pro-development" arguments are just as simplistic and miss the core of the arguments on both sides. There is a major problem in Halifax with an adversarial approach to development issues, with neither side even attempting to understand the concerns of the other.

kph06
Mar 24, 2010, 1:54 AM
Haha, that's a great video, I've been forwarding it around.

Looks very professional in quality. Who would go to such an extreme to put this together? What bothers me is that the crazed man (Hittler) is for the convention centre and is verbally attacking the Heritage people. Although it is funny, there is a subliminal message; they are saying that Hittler and the Nazis are convention centre supporters and the heritage people are being attacked. So it is time for convention centre supporters to give up and move to Toronto. Sounds like it was made by people associated with the Heritage Trust (i.e. Halifax isn't Toronto).

Here are the tags for the video (sounds kind of fishy, also the person who made this video only has this one video on YouTube, so there is no way to know what other causes he is affiliated with):
Hitler reacts to Halifax Nova Scotia Heritage Trust Coalition to save the view Convention centre NDP politics Dexter Rodney MacDonald

Haven't these people set Halifax back far enough? I think we all need to catch on to their tricks so Halifax and Nova Scotia can have a more prosperous future.

PS: This isn't even original, somebody took a video from YouTube and just changed the words. I take back what I said, it isn't professional, it is just someone with the Heritage Trust stealing someone else's idea. Here's another form of the video that was uploaded September 19, 2009. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GuGqPKP3xw&feature=related

I'm pretty sure if the Heritage Trust put it out they wouldn't make a mockery of Epstein or Pacey along with their fundamental principle of protecting the view from Citadel Hill. Take a breath and enjoy it for what I believe it was meant to be, a funny snapshot of the insanity that is suppose to be progress in Halifax.

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 1:56 AM
Geez Fenwick. Talk about over analyzing. And yes it isn't original - but I don't think it is someone from HT stealing ideas. This clip has been used for a large number of "re-dubs". You really are a conspiracy theorist.:yuck:

You may find it hard to believe, but HT are not a bunch of people trying to squash all your dreams. They actually do believe in what they fight for - and while I don't agree with much of their rhetoric, much of the "pro-development" arguments are just as simplistic and miss the core of the arguments on both sides. There is a major problem in Halifax with an adversarial approach to development issues, with neither side even attempting to understand the concerns of the other.

I actually do understand the aims of the Heritage - mainly to preserve heritage, partly to preserve the neigbourhoods of tenured Dalhousie professors and medical Doctors with no fear of losing their jobs. Most people need jobs, otherwise they will have to move to a different province or country to find work. I would respect the Hertitage Trust a lot more if they would preserve significant heritage and work at producing jobs for everyday Nova Scotians.

Obviously, from your posts you are intelligent planarchy, but those of us who have been following the Halifax area news for the past few decades know all the Heritage Trust tricks.

hfx_chris
Mar 24, 2010, 1:57 AM
Looks very professional in quality. Who would go to such an extreme to put this together? What bothers me is that the crazed man (Hittler) is for the convention centre and is verbally attacking the Heritage people. Although it is funny, there is a subliminal message; they are saying that Hittler and the Nazis are convention centre supporters and the heritage people are being attacked. So it is time for convention centre supporters to give up and move to Toronto. Sounds like it was made by people associated with the Heritage Trust (i.e. Halifax isn't Toronto).

Here are the tags for the video (sounds kind of fishy, also the person who made this video only has this one video on YouTube, so there is no way to know what other causes he is affiliated with):
Hitler reacts to Halifax Nova Scotia Heritage Trust Coalition to save the view Convention centre NDP politics Dexter Rodney MacDonald

Haven't these people set Halifax back far enough? I think we all need to catch on to their tricks so Halifax and Nova Scotia can have a more prosperous future.

PS: This isn't even original, somebody took a video from YouTube and just changed the words. I take back what I said, it isn't professional, it is just someone with the Heritage Trust stealing someone else's idea. Here's another form of the video that was uploaded September 19, 2009. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8GuGqPKP3xw&feature=related

:duh

Welcome to the internet :)

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 1:58 AM
Haha, that's a great video, I've been forwarding it around.



I'm pretty sure if the Heritage Trust put it out they wouldn't make a mockery of Epstein or Pacey along with their fundamental principle of protecting the view from Citadel Hill. Take a breath and enjoy it for what I believe it was meant to be, a funny snapshot of the insanity that is suppose to be progress in Halifax.

If you check the tags for the video you might think otherwise. If this video is followed within a few days with another video promoting the cause of the Save our View group then you will know that it was planned.

Here is another version that was uploaded 3 years ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfkDxF2kn1I&feature=related

hfx_chris
Mar 24, 2010, 1:59 AM
I don't see anything in there that would make me think this is from the HT...

I will however point out that this is awesome:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9i9N-Ez5Y8

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 2:06 AM
I don't see anything in there that would make me think this is from the HT...

I will however point out that this is awesome:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j9i9N-Ez5Y8

I hope that you are right, however, the tags include Save our View and Heritage Trust. It seems like they are planning to have another video come out with the same tags. Wait and see. If not, then I will admit that I am taking this too seriously.

kph06
Mar 24, 2010, 2:18 AM
If you check the tags for the video you might think otherwise. If this video is followed within a few days with another video promoting the cause of the Save our View group then you will know that it was planned.

Here is another version that was uploaded 3 years ago: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfkDxF2kn1I&feature=related

I hardly believe video editing and YouTube are on the Heritage Trusts radar. A friend of mine was behind a lady at Staples who was baffled by the photocopier, turns out she was making copies of Heritage Trust registration forms. So for them to put this together would be the equivalent to putting a man on Mars, so by that time frame, in 2030 Phil Pacey might make his YouTube debut with the "Evolution of Dance" remake.

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 2:52 AM
I hardly believe video editing and YouTube are on the Heritage Trusts radar. A friend of mine was behind a lady at Staples who was baffled by the photocopier, turns out she was making copies of Heritage Trust registration forms. So for them to put this together would be the equivalent to putting a man on Mars, so by that time frame, in 2030 Phil Pacey might make his YouTube debut with the "Evolution of Dance" remake.

Yes, I am taking this much too seriously. However, don't underestimate the Heritage Trust. There are some very intelligent people in the Heritage Trust and they use all sorts of propaganda to trick people like the lady who was baffled by the photocopier.

My pro-development views might be somewhat simplistic. However, having watching the Maritimes as a depressed area for so long, it would be good to see some prosperity which has never been a goal of the Heritage Trust (in my opinion).

PS: Let's see if they link this video to their Save our View Petition?

DigitalNinja
Mar 24, 2010, 3:45 AM
Yes, I am taking this much too seriously. However, don't underestimate the Communists. There are some very intelligent people in the USSR and they use all sorts of propaganda to trick people like the lady who was baffled by the photocopier.

My pro-development views might be somewhat simplistic. However, having watching the USSR as a depressed area for so long, it would be good to see some prosperity which has never been a goal of the USSR (in my opinion).

PS: Let's see if they link this video to their Save our View Petition?

I think we have a general McCarthy on our hands here :P
Seriously you are taking it way to seriously, the clip is from a German movie from about 2003 or so, there have been subs of this since like 2004 or 2005. The HT is not that evil, in fact they can be comparable to you and your want for a stadium so badly. They want to resist change as much as you want a stadium in Halifax. Mind you I'd like a stadium to, but it's not the point, you wont see another video up unless the creator reads your posts here and puts one up for the laughs.
(By the way, I edited your post just for fun :P )

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 4:23 PM
I think we have a general McCarthy on our hands here :P

(By the way, I edited your post just for fun :P )

OK. :haha: Maybe, I was wrong. Or otherwise, if this is Heritage Trust propaganda, then it has backfired since most of the comments seem to think that it is making fun of the wacky views of the Heritage Trust and Save our View :tup: I think that there is hope for a brighter future for Halifax after all; with heritage buildings and modern architecture side by side.

PS: I am an unapologetic pro-development modern architecture lover. So if the Heritage trust is going to try to stop another great development in Halifax then they won't get any praise from me!

Phalanx
Mar 24, 2010, 4:40 PM
Just some quick reading for fenwick16:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_meme

http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/downfall-hitler-meme

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 5:02 PM
Just some quick reading for fenwick16:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_meme

http://knowyourmeme.com/memes/downfall-hitler-meme

I read both links. Very interesting. I actually saw this movie in German with English subtitles. I had no idea that it had become such a popular "Internet Meme"

However, I still think that "Save our View" and the Heritage Trust will do all that they can to scuttle the convention centre project as they have done so many times before with various other projects. This is evident from the number of "Save our View" and anti-convention centre articles that are being published in the Chronicle Herald. As the April 19 deadline approaches, I expect to see a lot more. You will most likely see lots of comments supporting these anti-development views. Look at today's article and read the comments: http://thechronicleherald.ca/Editorials/1173820.html . These people come out of the woodwork every time progress is mentioned.

Examples:
Bruce DeVenne wrote:
Ask the people of the province in a plebiscite. After all they are the ones who will be paying for it year in and year out with subsidies same as the one we have now, only bigger. This should really be a non-issue with the mess the province and city are in financially. The answer is NO!

sturret wrote:
Yes it is the views that are to be lost not the legislated viewplanes from the ramparts. But the ramparts are not were the most people go, it is around the roadway. The build it people always say protect only the important heritage everytime they want to destroy some. They never give a list of what is important. There is lots of room for development around the harbour not everything has to be on their land in the downtown. As to the developer he had to clear the old herald building down as it had no salvage value. The other block was mostly cleared parking lot. He can still build office space if there is a demand. Retail, parking etc can still be done with residential at the top if need be. However he will not be able to build the mini-me Scotia Square covered in blue glass that would pull businesses from other buildings. If I was coming from inland I would want to see lots of water, not buildings looking at building walls. Let's keep the unique. Very few urban areas have public viewing in their downtowns that let you feel so open with sky and sea and green.

I started reading newspapers when I was 10 - 11 years old when I started delivering the Chronicle Herald (in Bridgetown) and Mail Star (in the Dartmouth area). It has been 40 years now, that I have followed the Halifax area and Nova Scotia news. Hence my distrust for these people and the way they twist the truth.

planarchy
Mar 24, 2010, 8:04 PM
PS: I am an unapologetic pro-development modern architecture lover.

The proposed design is anything but modern - in any sense of the word. It looks more like a poor attempt at post-modern design, resembling projects built sometime between 1985 and 1995. If we are actually going to build a large building on this site, lets at least build something that looks like it was actually built in 2010 - instead of the current proposal that looks like something that other cities may very well have rejected 20 years ago.:yuck:

someone123
Mar 24, 2010, 8:17 PM
The proposed design is anything but modern - in any sense of the word. It looks more like a poor attempt at post-modern design, resembling projects built sometime between 1985 and 1995. If we are actually going to build a large building on this site, lets at least build something that looks like it was actually built in 2010 - instead of the current proposal that looks like something that other cities may very well have rejected 20 years ago.:yuck:

I sincerely hope that it was a preliminary rendering and that there will be a lot more design work before anything is built.. this actually seems pretty normal for projects in Halifax - do you remember the initial "renderings" for King's Wharf?

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 8:21 PM
The proposed design is anything but modern - in any sense of the word. It looks more like a poor attempt at post-modern design, resembling projects built sometime between 1985 and 1995. If we are actually going to build a large building on this site, lets at least build something that looks like it was actually built in 2010 - instead of the current proposal that looks like something that other cities may very well have rejected 20 years ago.:yuck:

Although, I partly agree with you, the Heritage Trust would never allow an ultramodern design in downtown Halifax. Even in downtown Toronto, ultra-modern architecture tends to be either hated or loved.

Although you dislike the design, many on this forum like it. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There is only so much that can be done to make a hotel and office building unique. Having been to a number of convention centres, I can say that many look like rectangular boxes. Based on the ones that I have seen, the Halifax design is one of the better ones.

Thank you for posting the video link. People viewing it seem to consider it as a joke on the Heritage Trust.

planarchy
Mar 24, 2010, 8:58 PM
I sincerely hope that it was a preliminary rendering and that there will be a lot more design work before anything is built.. this actually seems pretty normal for projects in Halifax - do you remember the initial "renderings" for King's Wharf?

True - I'll hope for something better. But this is a really counter-productive method for presenting new projects. If you know it will be somewhat controversial no matter what you present, perhaps it would be more effective to present something quite radical, then tone it down to pacify the masses.

the Heritage Trust would never allow an ultramodern design in downtown Halifax.

I really don't think this is such as issue for them. It really is almost all about height for them, everything else is secondary.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. There is only so much that can be done to make a hotel and office building unique. Having been to a number of convention centres, I can say that many look like rectangular boxes. Based on the ones that I have seen, the Halifax design is one of the better ones.

I don't buy this. Good design is not a luxury although we generally seem to think it is in North America. And one important factor about this convention centre and many across North America, and throughout Europe, is that they are rarely located in the central core (especially when the core is as small as it is in Halifax). They are often in industrial areas, reclaimed industrial areas, near airports or, at the very least, on the fringe of the central core. If it is located in the central core, attention to design is crucial, as the both the benefits and consequences are much bigger for everyone, compared to a similar project located on the fringe.

Build big, big tall, whatever, but - there should be no compromise on the smart treatment of the exterior block at grade, as well as the interior street created out of market street. This is where the project is most likely to fail if not given proper attention.

alps
Mar 24, 2010, 9:06 PM
Hehe, that video is priceless.

I also hope the renderings that have come out are preliminary. Not meaning to sound like a broken record, but while I like the density of it, the architecture seems very suburban and it looks to have a crumby relationship to the street.

fenwick16
Mar 24, 2010, 9:09 PM
And one important factor about this convention centre and many across North America, and throughout Europe, is that they are rarely located in the central core (especially when the core is as small as it is in Halifax). They are often in industrial areas, reclaimed industrial areas, near airports or, at the very least, on the fringe of the central core. If it is located in the central core, attention to design is crucial, as the both the benefits and consequences are much bigger for everyone, compared to a similar project located on the fringe.

Almost every one in North America that I have been to, has been in the central core. So I don't know how you can say this.

Toronto has 2 large ones that I know of. One is downtown, the other is near the airport and the one near the airport looks like a very large industrial building.

someone123
Mar 24, 2010, 9:27 PM
Although, I partly agree with you, the Heritage Trust would never allow an ultramodern design in downtown Halifax.

You say this as if they have veto power over every project in the city. They don't. In fact, it's pretty much the opposite - in the end they typically lose their case.

As for how to initially present a project, I'm just not sure they put much thought into it. Many of the developers seem to have very little design sense, along with most other people. Most of the responses to the convention centre rendering have been "the towers are too tall!" or "Halifax needs a new convention centre", not "this looks like something from 1982". It's just not really on the radar for most people, even though it is important to them in the end.

Jstaleness
Mar 25, 2010, 12:51 AM
From CBCnews.ca (I couldn't find the Commons Thread)

A Halifax city councillor wants to put an end to concerts being held on the Halifax Common.

It's not just the noise from the outdoor concerts but the disruption they cause for athletes and others who use the Common for commuting, Coun. Jennifer Watts said Thursday.

Thousands of people have come out to the Common in recent years to see performances by big acts like the Rolling Stones, Kiss and Paul McCartney.

"After four years, people have said they've had enough, and they would like concerts not to be here anymore," Watts said.

The shows create noise and disruption even for people who don't live nearby, the councillor said.

"It still has a major impact on people, on recreational users, as well as people who use this as an active transportation trail, and just generally as a green open space in the city," she said.

Watts's motion is to be debated at next week's Halifax regional council meeting.

That's welcome news for a group that's fought concerts on the Common for years.

"This is common land, and the concerts represent commercialization and privatization of the land, sometimes for weeks on end," said Beverly Miller, of the community group Friends of the Halifax Common.
Economic benefits outweigh nuisance

But the motion is bad news for the man who brought McCartney to Halifax last July.

"I'm hoping they'll come to the realization of the overall impact of this event, what it does for the city, the image of the city internationally," said Harold MacKay of Power Promotional Concepts.

Watts has questioned the economic benefits the concerts allegedly generate for the city, saying there are questions about exactly how many people attended the events and how much money the concerts generated.

"'We have never been able to get a clear hard number of … ticketed people who've attended," she said.

MacKay said the economic spinoffs of the McCartney concert were significant.

"The spend levels were in the $24 million range, so pretty significant expenditure," he said.

Watts would also like to stop the concert-related improvements that are set to go ahead this year on the Common, including $375,000 to install a permanent power source at the site and $120,000 to reinforce the turf for trucks unloading and loading equipment.

In 2006, a combination of rain, heavy equipment and huge crowds at the Rolling Stones concert churned parts of the Halifax Common into a muddy mess.
Resident opinions vary

Mayor Peter Kelly said he supports concerts on the Common.

"Common land is used for common purposes — for all purposes," he said. "It's not just for sports, not just for concerts; it's for many different opportunities and venues."

Halifax residents are divided.

"It does a lot of damage to the Common," said Tom Bell. "[It] seems to be fun and a nice evening, but my net feeling about it is it's not so good."

Joan Rodman disagrees and supports concerts on the Common.

"Well, we can always walk around [the Common]; it's not a big deal for me," she said. "I think it's a good idea to have them."

Another resident, Rob Doyle, is not ready to see the outdoor concerts disappear.

"I still would like to see a few more shows," he said. "Like, Paul McCartney was a great concert. Anyone else they could bring in, I'd go."

Read more: http://www.cbc.ca/canada/nova-scotia/story/2010/03/24/ns-concerts-halifax-common.html#ixzz0j92F3QG2

cormiermax
Mar 25, 2010, 12:54 AM
Ridicules, just a bunch off old geezers who love to complain. And what Athletes use the commons?

Wishblade
Mar 25, 2010, 1:16 AM
Just another reason to build a stadium...

someone123
Mar 25, 2010, 1:21 AM
On some level I agree with complaints that the concerts are not open to all, but in practice way more people go to them than would otherwise use the Commons during that period.

The argument about damage to the Commons is also partly true but it seems a little sketchy to then turn around and oppose improvements that would minimize problems.

These are people who are out to get their own way and aren't interested in compromise.

Bev Miller's face should be in the dictionary under CAVE - citizens against virtually everything.

fenwick16
Mar 25, 2010, 1:23 AM
Just another reason to build a stadium...

My thought exactly. Then they don't have to set up temporary toilets each time and most people would have seats of which many could be covered for shelter from the rain.

Dmajackson
Mar 25, 2010, 1:42 AM
Everytime I read an article like this I become happier that I live in Bedford and not the peninsula. We might have some whackjobs out here that oppose everything but they don't have the determination or apparent contacts in the journalism industry that Ms. Miller does.

Not to rub anything in but there is a reason why Bedford has three cranes right now and a community 5+ times the size of us only has 4 or 5. :P

Empire
Mar 25, 2010, 2:04 AM
Ridicules, just a bunch off old geezers who love to complain. And what Athletes use the commons?

It`s absurd at best. The athletes didn`t always have exclusive rights to hijack the commons...........if you can call office softball teams looking for a place to drink beer in public "athletes" Any damage is not permanent and the rest of the commons is not mint condition anyway.

Jstaleness
Mar 25, 2010, 2:13 AM
Our cranes are taller!:D

Keith P.
Mar 25, 2010, 12:54 PM
Jennifer Watts is a pain and seems to be against anything that would move the economy forward. Of course, she is a protege of Commissar Howard Epstein so that is not a big surprise. She singlehandedly tried to derail HRM By Design by acting as the Heritage Trust's contact on council, now this. What a mistake the citizens made by electing her.

worldlyhaligonian
Mar 25, 2010, 2:47 PM
Yeah, this is just plain rediculous... like not having concerts in Central Park.

They obviously don't know the history of the common either... manufactured lies.

Dmajackson
Mar 26, 2010, 3:59 AM
Bubbles’ Mansion closing
Thu. Mar 25 - 4:54 AM

It’s back to wrangling shopping carts for Bubbles and his crew.

Bubbles’ Mansion, a Halifax bar owned in part by the actor Mike Smith, who portrayed the bug-eyed character on the Trailer Park Boys TV show and movies, has gone out of business.

Brad Hartlin, manager of the nightspot that opened in 2006, blamed the decision in part on a municipal ban on cheap drinks.

"We decided that . . . if we have to make a change, the business became not viable," he told the CBC.

In an effort to combat public drunkenness, the municipality brought in regulations a while back to ban $1 drink nights. The minimum charge for a drink in the city is now $2.50.

Hartlin said the move resulted in smaller crowds and revenues.

The Canadian Press

DigitalNinja
Mar 26, 2010, 4:48 AM
I wish it was the Dome and the Palace instead.