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Colin May
Apr 27, 2014, 6:25 PM
@counterfactual :Re siting of Halifax Treatment plant.
Land use in Halifax harbour : Starting at Fairview Cove container terminal, then on to land for terminal expansion, then on to Africville park - the 'sensitive area' , then on to port infrastructure for offshore and cargo vessels, then on to Halifax Shipyards, then on to DND and then we arrive at the casino, then on to Purdy's Wharf, Historic properties and the WDC lands and then the cruise ship terminal and more port facilities (jealously guarded by the port authority) and then Point Pleasant park. No land available.

RP+5 wants the Coast Guard base to remain Marine Industrial after the CG moves to BIO as the port authority wants yet more land reserved for possible future port use.
Where do you think the Halifax treatment plant should have been built to serve the peninsula and beyond the rotary ?
Other plants are in Mill Cove, Bedford; Dartmouth and Eastern Passage.

Colin May
Apr 27, 2014, 8:30 PM
Who bought the 155 (?) acres at Shannon Park ( PID 41404104) on March 5 2014 for $4,000,000 ? This sale was just 1 parcel.
It was assessed at $19,788,400

Halifax Regional School Board operates the French Immersion school property adjacent to this lot and has asked the province to buy it. Viewpoint.ca shows the school property (4.7 acres) was sold on the same day for $313,000.

At the April 23 2014 meeting of HRSB the capital budget listed purchase and renovation of Shannon Park as their #2 Priority and the report stated ;

" Shannon Park Elementary (1952) Purchase and Addition/Alteration Cost Estimate - $313,000 + $1,500,000

The lease agreement and Purchase and Sale agreement between HRSB and DND has expired effective April 1, 2013. DND has transferred the
property to Canada Lands Corporation (CLC). A final extension of both agreements has been granted until July 15, 2015. This funding supports the
purchase price ($313K) and betterment of the school facility ($1.5M). "

Also on the same day the DND property 6 Nootka,less than 0.33 acres, at Shannon Park was 1 of 2 parcels sold for $4,000,000.

It seems that all of these sales have been kept quiet pending announcements from the federal and provincial governments.

fenwick16
Apr 28, 2014, 12:19 AM
Who bought the 155 (?) acres at Shannon Park ( PID 41404104) on March 5 2014 for $4,000,000 ? This sale was just 1 parcel.
It was assessed at $19,788,400

Halifax Regional School Board operates the French Immersion school property adjacent to this lot and has asked the province to buy it. Viewpoint.ca shows the school property (4.7 acres) was sold on the same day for $313,000.

At the April 23 2014 meeting of HRSB the capital budget listed purchase and renovation of Shannon Park as their #2 Priority and the report stated ;

" Shannon Park Elementary (1952) Purchase and Addition/Alteration Cost Estimate - $313,000 + $1,500,000

The lease agreement and Purchase and Sale agreement between HRSB and DND has expired effective April 1, 2013. DND has transferred the
property to Canada Lands Corporation (CLC). A final extension of both agreements has been granted until July 15, 2015. This funding supports the
purchase price ($313K) and betterment of the school facility ($1.5M). "

Also on the same day the DND property 6 Nootka,less than 0.33 acres, at Shannon Park was 1 of 2 parcels sold for $4,000,000.

It seems that all of these sales have been kept quiet pending announcements from the federal and provincial governments.

That is interesting. Can you please provide a source of this information? I am not sure how to access such information.

Just out of interest I found this Shannon Park Infrastructure Assessment - http://issuu.com/brucemans/docs/spinfrastrcuture . It lists the available space as 420,916 square meters, which would be 104 acres.

Haligonian88
Apr 28, 2014, 12:35 AM
That is interesting. Can you please provide a source of this information? I am not sure how to access such information.

Just out of interest I found this Shannon Park Infrastructure Assessment - http://issuu.com/brucemans/docs/spinfrastrcuture . It lists the available space as 420,916 square meters, which would be 104 acres.

They are listed on viewpoint.ca (http://viewpoint.ca) but the acreage is different from those mentioned above. You just have to click on the different properties and view sales history. Not sure if an account is required.

Colin May
Apr 28, 2014, 12:53 AM
That is interesting. Can you please provide a source of this information? I am not sure how to access such information.

Just out of interest I found this Shannon Park Infrastructure Assessment - http://issuu.com/brucemans/docs/spinfrastrcuture . It lists the available space as 420,916 square meters, which would be 104 acres.


The school sale is on viewpoint.ca but not on PVSC
Go to the PVSC site, choose 'Find an Assessment' and then choose 'Advanced search', and then accept the terms and conditions
Use the categories 'Halifax Regional Municipality' and choose 'Dartmouth' from the drop down menu and choose 'Commercial' and use the period Jan 1 2014 to April 25 2014 and you will see a list of just 40 properties.

The Shannon park properties are the 1st and 38th on the list
1 Algonquin Path and Nootka Avenue - then click on the blue AAN number for more details, which includes the area of the property. The purchaser is not identified. The Registry of Deeds identifies the seller and the buyer but that info requires a visit or a subscription.

When I put data in my posts I use public sources. Developers, real estate agents and PR people should be treated with scepticism.

mcmcclassic
Apr 28, 2014, 2:54 AM
Who bought the 155 (?) acres at Shannon Park ( PID 41404104) on March 5 2014 for $4,000,000 ? This sale was just 1 parcel.
It was assessed at $19,788,400

Halifax Regional School Board operates the French Immersion school property adjacent to this lot and has asked the province to buy it. Viewpoint.ca shows the school property (4.7 acres) was sold on the same day for $313,000.

At the April 23 2014 meeting of HRSB the capital budget listed purchase and renovation of Shannon Park as their #2 Priority and the report stated ;

" Shannon Park Elementary (1952) Purchase and Addition/Alteration Cost Estimate - $313,000 + $1,500,000

The lease agreement and Purchase and Sale agreement between HRSB and DND has expired effective April 1, 2013. DND has transferred the
property to Canada Lands Corporation (CLC). A final extension of both agreements has been granted until July 15, 2015. This funding supports the
purchase price ($313K) and betterment of the school facility ($1.5M). "

Also on the same day the DND property 6 Nootka,less than 0.33 acres, at Shannon Park was 1 of 2 parcels sold for $4,000,000.

It seems that all of these sales have been kept quiet pending announcements from the federal and provincial governments.

I ran that PID you provided into Property Online and I found a document that states that the land was transferred from DnD to a crown corporation called Canada Lands Company...

fenwick16
Apr 28, 2014, 3:30 AM
I ran that PID you provided into Property Online and I found a document that states that the land was transferred from DnD to a crown corporation called Canada Lands Company...

Thanks for the information. Here is an explanation of Canada Lands Company - http://www.clcl.ca/home . The following description is given.

Canada Lands Company Limited is an arms length, self-financing Crown Corporation reporting to the Parliament of Canada. The principal goal of the company's mandate as determined by Cabinet is:

"to ensure the commercially oriented, orderly disposition of surplus properties with optimal value to the Canadian taxpayer and the holding of certain properties."

fenwick16
Apr 28, 2014, 3:31 AM
The school sale is on viewpoint.ca but not on PVSC
Go to the PVSC site, choose 'Find an Assessment' and then choose 'Advanced search', and then accept the terms and conditions
Use the categories 'Halifax Regional Municipality' and choose 'Dartmouth' from the drop down menu and choose 'Commercial' and use the period Jan 1 2014 to April 25 2014 and you will see a list of just 40 properties.

The Shannon park properties are the 1st and 38th on the list
1 Algonquin Path and Nootka Avenue - then click on the blue AAN number for more details, which includes the area of the property. The purchaser is not identified. The Registry of Deeds identifies the seller and the buyer but that info requires a visit or a subscription.

When I put data in my posts I use public sources. Developers, real estate agents and PR people should be treated with scepticism.

Thank you for the information Colin May.

counterfactual
Apr 28, 2014, 5:00 AM
Whoah.

Did you guys essentially just "scoop" a major news announcement long before it's publicly announced? ie: that there is going to be a stadium built at Shannon Park, with provincial and federal help?

hokus83
Apr 28, 2014, 6:45 AM
Whoah.

Did you guys essentially just "scoop" a major news announcement long before it's publicly announced? ie: that there is going to be a stadium built at Shannon Park, with provincial and federal help?

I think this is just standard protocol for surplus land with the Canada Lands Company and doesn't necessarily mean anything stadium.

counterfactual
Apr 28, 2014, 6:46 AM
I think this is just standard protocol for surplus land with the Canada Lands Company and doesn't necessarily mean anything stadium.

Doh.

Colin May
Apr 28, 2014, 12:39 PM
Thanks for the information. Here is an explanation of Canada Lands Company - http://www.clcl.ca/home . The following description is given.

Canada Lands Company Limited is an arms length, self-financing Crown Corporation reporting to the Parliament of Canada. The principal goal of the company's mandate as determined by Cabinet is:

"to ensure the commercially oriented, orderly disposition of surplus properties with optimal value to the Canadian taxpayer and the holding of certain properties."
I looked at Canada Lands website before posting yesterday and they have details of properties in several provinces but nothing for Nova Scotia.
There is an outstanding First Nations claim to part of the property.
mccclassic has accessed the Registry of Deeds 'Property online' and that is the most accurate source. Canada Lands used to have a private individual acting for them but I think that arrangement is no longer in place.

Ziobrop
Apr 28, 2014, 2:24 PM
I think *some* more significant height is warranted for this area, because we just don't have zoning for it anywhere else on the peninsula. This is it. This is all we have.

I'm not saying we need to plaster this with a bunch of condo towers-- it can be a mix-- but a bunch of midrise developments? Blah. Blah. Blah.

BTW, I'm all for consistent density and community building. I don't see it in this vision...

Question; Why the fixation on Height - From both Camps. the STV type dont want anything tall, which i get (but dont agree with), then there seems to be a camp that says things are not tall enough. You can get good density in 6-10 stories; why are 10-14 not enough?

is this some sort of inferiority complex? we are not a good city if we don't have tall buildings? Height is usually an expression of Ego.. Should a more modest scale better reflect our maritime values?

Drybrain
Apr 28, 2014, 3:00 PM
Question; Why the fixation on Height - From both Camps. the STV type dont want anything tall, which i get (but dont agree with), then there seems to be a camp that says things are not tall enough. You can get good density in 6-10 stories; why are 10-14 not enough?

is this some sort of inferiority complex? we are not a good city if we don't have tall buildings? Height is usually an expression of Ego.. Should a more modest scale better reflect our maritime values?

I don't know about Maritime values, but I agree there's a fixation from both sides. To me density is the important thing, and how much density can be achieved while keeping things realistic vis-a-vis market demand. (The Ekistics report basically says something, that the height of any buildings on the site should "be limited by the capacity of each building to provide required services."

it's all about planning, streetscaping, and design--as long as the density is high and the planning is urban, I don't care if the buildings are tall or not.

Bringing population downtown, fixing an aesthetically and urbanistically awful scar on the city, making it easier and safer to cross from the North End into downtown and vice-versa, revitalizing the area around Granville, etc, are all potential spin-offs. Some real landmark skyscrapers would be nice, and extend the skyline north a bit. If there are enough people to fill them, let's do it, but I'm a lot more excited about what's going to happen on the streets.

counterfactual
Apr 28, 2014, 3:10 PM
Question; Why the fixation on Height - From both Camps. the STV type dont want anything tall, which i get (but dont agree with), then there seems to be a camp that says things are not tall enough. You can get good density in 6-10 stories; why are 10-14 not enough?

is this some sort of inferiority complex? we are not a good city if we don't have tall buildings? Height is usually an expression of Ego.. Should a more modest scale better reflect our maritime values?

Why are you so against skyscrapers? is this some sort of insecurity? Having skyscrapers in Halifax is different. A big change. Fear of change is usually an expression of insecurity.. Should a more modest scale be used so we can feel less insecure changes happening in our city?

Are you afraid that as soon as we have a building over 14 storeys, we're all of a sudden going to be a different city? Our values will be corrupted and we'll no longer be a "good city"? We'll become... [ shudder ] "Toronto"?

...

Seems to me the only people with inferiority complexes, are those that feel the need to see their "modest values" reflected in every possible thing around them, from the height of buildings, to every new development proposal, to architectural design, to new city slogans, and logos, brands, etc.

In fact, if I didn't care so much about downtown renewal and densification-- which is what this debate is really about-- I like the notion of skyscrapers in this area for the very reason it disrupts the smug faux modesty of people who purport to speak for "maritime values" and identity.

You talk about 6-10 stories, like mid-rise developments in this city are popping up like weeds. Getting development built in this city over five storeys is a war. If you haven't figured that out by now, I'm not sure what fantasy world of modest maritime values you're living in.

I've actually never been dogmatic about height. There needs to be a mix, but the option should be there. I've always thought that Cogswell offers an opportunity for a kind of intense densification that we cannot get anywhere else in the city, that will really help re-populate the downtown, renew it, and sustain small and medium businesses in the core.

Also, the city has a major sprawl problem, that is not stopping anytime soon. The vast majority of growth, again, for the next 15 years will be in the suburbs and exurbs, exacerbating the problem. Our current strategies aren't working, we need some bold moves. I think more intense densification in certain areas, to create transit hubs, bring down the cost of condos / rentals for families, etc, are all a part of the solution.

Ziobrop
Apr 28, 2014, 3:34 PM
Why are you so against skyscrapers? is this some sort of insecurity? Having skyscrapers in Halifax is different. A big change. Fear of change is usually an expression of insecurity.. Should a more modest scale be used so we can feel less insecure changes happening in our city?

Are you afraid that as soon as we have a building over 14 storeys, we're all of a sudden going to be a different city? Our values will be corrupted? We'll become... [ shudder ] "Toronto"?



I don't fear tall; nor am I necessarily against tall. I was merely attempting to understand the camp that immediately wishes any midrise was taller. It strikes me as the exact same as STV - A standard position taken on any development with no thought to its relevance. In fact I agree that the Cogswell Lands Are an Appropriate place for height, given Scotia Square, 1801 Hollis and Ocean Towers as precedents.

urbanists (Keesmat, Todrian) like to cite Scandinavian examples of good Urban communities, and they are predominantly mid-rise. I happen to think we generally fit this sort of model well, and should use it.

As for traditional maritime values - some are good and should stay, others are outmoded and should go. One can "be bold" by defending what you have. Jane Jacobs is seen as a bold urbanist - and she defended what she had in face of Modern Scientific Progress. We can Also be Bold by modernizing what we do now. I'd love to see a MLS concept for a Modern Vernacular Midrise for the site.

Ziobrop
Apr 29, 2014, 11:57 AM
Whoah.

Did you guys essentially just "scoop" a major news announcement long before it's publicly announced? ie: that there is going to be a stadium built at Shannon Park, with provincial and federal help?

See Herald:
http://thechronicleherald.ca/business/1203769-taylor-shannon-park-school-may-be-political-football#.U1-OCQTYBT0.twitter

Apparently HRSB Leases the school and land from DND, and wants to Outright own it. The transfer to Canada Lands was probably the first step in divesting it to HRSB

Colin May
Apr 29, 2014, 9:14 PM
Re Shannon Park : I just love scooping the politicians ! ( Not the first time, not the last. )

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/shannon-park-in-dartmouth-split-3-ways-by-dnd-1.2626083

here is a photo of the MicMac settlement at Turtle Grove :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Mi%27kmaq_people_at_Tufts_Cove,_Nova_Scotia,_Canada,_ca._1871.jpg

Keith P.
Apr 30, 2014, 12:55 AM
here is a photo of the MicMac settlement at Turtle Grove :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Mi%27kmaq_people_at_Tufts_Cove,_Nova_Scotia,_Canada,_ca._1871.jpg

I somehow doubt they had a deed.

Colin May
Apr 30, 2014, 1:08 AM
I somehow doubt they had a deed.

I'll take that as humour.
The deal to pass the land to Millbrook is all done bar the signing and the press conference. And it avoids a long legal battle as well as affording the government the opportunity for positive publicity ahead of an election.

The bigger question which the media will be chasing pertains to the valuation of the largest piece; here is the history of the assessed value :

2008 $13,422,400
2009 $13,825,100
2010 $13,825,100
2011 $14,101,600
2012 $15,637,500
2013 $17,839,600
2014 $19,788,400

How does such a large fully serviced property in the centre of HRM suddenly be worth a mere $4,000,000 ?
Where is the appraisal document that describes how the property declined in value ?
And has the federal government been paying taxes based on the prior years' assessed value ?

Keith P.
Apr 30, 2014, 1:30 AM
I'll take that as humour.

Well, the whole thing is a joke, so...

How does such a large fully serviced property in the centre of HRM suddenly be worth a mere $4,000,000 ?
Where is the appraisal document that describes how the property declined in value ?
And has the federal government been paying taxes based on the prior years' assessed value ?

The Feds don't pay taxes.

Colin May
Apr 30, 2014, 3:10 AM
Well, the whole thing is a joke, so...



The Feds don't pay taxes.

They pay grants in lieu of taxes based on the value of their properties.

Surely you recall the 2012 Supreme Court of Canada ruling in favour of HRM.
Here is what the SCOC said in reference to the value of Citadel Hill - “It can hardly be though either fair or equitable to conclude that 42 acres in the middle of a major metropolitan centre has no value for assessment purposes,”

http://thechronicleherald.ca/opinion/108683-stephenson-kudos-to-hrm-in-legal-victory-over-citadel-taxes

By the same token how can 55 acres in the middle of a major metropolitan centre with an assessed value of $19,488,000 now be valued at $4,000,000 ?

counterfactual
Apr 30, 2014, 7:51 AM
I'll take that as humour.
The deal to pass the land to Millbrook is all done bar the signing and the press conference. And it avoids a long legal battle as well as affording the government the opportunity for positive publicity ahead of an election.

The bigger question which the media will be chasing pertains to the valuation of the largest piece; here is the history of the assessed value :

2008 $13,422,400
2009 $13,825,100
2010 $13,825,100
2011 $14,101,600
2012 $15,637,500
2013 $17,839,600
2014 $19,788,400

How does such a large fully serviced property in the centre of HRM suddenly be worth a mere $4,000,000 ?
Where is the appraisal document that describes how the property declined in value ?
And has the federal government been paying taxes based on the prior years' assessed value ?

Is there a requirement for one fed agency to transfer property to another fed dept at FMV?

Colin May
Apr 30, 2014, 1:38 PM
Is there a requirement for one fed agency to transfer property to another fed dept at FMV?
Don't know.
Perhaps the cost of demolition and site remediation is so substantial as to render the assessed value meaningless. DND happy to get the land off its books.
Canada Lands will be stuck with the costs but will quickly pass on 2 of the 3 parcels to Millbrook and HRSB.
I presume the assessment value will decline as will the grants in lieu payable to HRM.

counterfactual
Apr 30, 2014, 10:22 PM
Saw this today:

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BmfFrpkCcAECUFk.jpg

Barrington Street, c 1955.

Quite something. But as someone said -- we really screwed that up, didn't we?


PS: what is with the "Oakland" bus? A lost street?

musicman
Apr 30, 2014, 11:42 PM
They sure did know how to make great signs back in the 50's... Wish we could get some craftsmanship like that today.

Keith P.
May 1, 2014, 12:11 AM
That photo is online at the NS Archives site. If you look closely at the marquee on the Paramount, the movie playing is "Pete Kelly's Blues". Prescient...

counterfactual
May 1, 2014, 12:22 AM
That photo is online at the NS Archives site. If you look closely at the marquee on the Paramount, the movie playing is "Pete Kelly's Blues". Prescient...

hahhahha

kph06
May 1, 2014, 12:53 AM
There's a small tower crane up at the site of the new Audi dealership.

Drybrain
May 1, 2014, 1:01 PM
Quite something. But as someone said -- we really screwed that up, didn't we?


PS: what is with the "Oakland" bus? A lost street?

Could be worse. I've always felt that Edmonton was the most unfortunate decimation of a main street in Canada.

From this:http://peel.library.ualberta.ca/pcimages/PC/014/web/PC014065.jpg

To this (https://www.google.ca/maps/@53.541027,-113.490282,3a,75y,281.84h,98.93t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1siN7jzGCmeqp4Q7IY049g7w!2e0). Almost nothing from that first photo remains, much to the detriment of downtown as a retail/nightlife destination.

Colin May
May 1, 2014, 1:14 PM
That photo is online at the NS Archives site. If you look closely at the marquee on the Paramount, the movie playing is "Pete Kelly's Blues". Prescient...

I think Pete Kelly sang " Please don't talk about me when I'm gone ".
He never appeared in black and white movies, they were all a mushy dull grey.

Colin May
May 1, 2014, 6:34 PM
Where can I buy a fully serviced and approved residential lot close to schools, transit and stores in the centre of HRM for less than $40,000 or up to $60,000 ?
Any suggestions ?

Empire
May 1, 2014, 11:17 PM
The "Cogswell Transformed" report talks a good game, and has a lot of interesting things in the report.

But after all that, this is the visualization they come up with? I don't like it. Really much at all.

It's an improvement over what's there. Yes. But what's there, is a concrete post-apocalyptic nightmare. I'd like to think we're setting our goals higher.

Like Drybrain said, too much like a boulevard, with massive setbacks. Why? Too low density. Why? I thought this area was supposed to be our "intense" residential density area? As in, we limit height everywhere because, well, once we get around to the Cogswell, this is where we're going to have some proper skyscrapers! Here we are, back at our typical 14-20 storeys. ZZZZzzz.

Also, as others said, too much useless green space in between roads. Who ever uses narrow green spaces bordered by major road arteries? Who is ever going to spend time near a fountain on a rotary island? Yes, yes, let me walk my kids in the useless Cogswell green spaces, dodging traffic, and breathing exhaust fumes. We don't need a G-d forsaken garden in Cogswell. Give me a break.

So much potential for this land. I don't see it here. Not with this vision.

Looks not so different from what is already there along Barrington towards the bridge; large setbacks, low density useless wasteland where no one spends any time. Disappointed.

- the basic concept misses the mark
- this is an intense edge of downtown and should be developed as such
- too many "green edges" wastes space and creates a chunky boring Ottawa look
- extend the present downtown into a real downtown - a signature office development should flank the edge of downtown - the development would be called Ordinance Park and would consist of a 35 storey Flatiron building with some original architecture from the district at the base much like Founders Square. A pocket park would connect the development and have the appearance of Victoria Park in Halifax of Bryant park in New York. https://www.google.ca/maps/@40.754177,-73.984596,3a,90y,123h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sLXt2wVjPNwWgnJKSJgUN1Q!2e0!6m1!1e1
-the "concept" as presented would fit nicely in the Young St. Kempt Rd. corridor but not downtown
- put parking u/g
- ensure a major hotel is part of the development 30-35 storeys
- the round-a-bouts cut into valuable space and will be a nightmare for the endless stream of truck traffic to and for the container terminal
- I think the sewage treatment plant was earmarked for under the bridge and the plan was screwed up so HRM being HRM puts the stinking thing smack dab at the gateway to downtown. To make it worse they make it as ugly as possible hoping no one will notice.

Another pocket park option:
Zuccoti Park New York
https://www.google.ca/maps/@40.708974,-74.010718,3a,75y,270h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sbvSKzxnrmAtqxYVBKTH64w!2e0

counterfactual
May 1, 2014, 11:22 PM
- the basic concept misses the mark
- this is an intense edge of downtown and should be developed as such
- too many "green edges" wastes space and creates a chunky boring Ottawa look
- extend the present downtown into a real downtown - a signature office development should flank the edge of downtown - the development would be called Ordinance Park and would consist of a 35 storey Flatiron building with some original architecture from the district at the base much like Founders Square. A pocket park would connect the development and have the appearance of Victoria Park in Halifax of Bryant park in New York. https://www.google.ca/maps/@40.754177,-73.984596,3a,90y,123h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sLXt2wVjPNwWgnJKSJgUN1Q!2e0!6m1!1e1
-the "concept" as presented would fit nicely in the Young St. Kempt Rd. corridor but not downtown
- put parking u/g
- ensure a major hotel is part of the development 30-35 storeys
- the round-a-bouts cut into valuable space and will be a nightmare for the endless stream of truck traffic to and for the container terminal
- I think the sewage treatment plant was earmarked for under the bridge and the plan was screwed up so HRM being HRM puts the stinking thing smack dab at the gateway to downtown. To make it worse they make it as ugly as possible hoping no one will notice.

Another pocket park option:
Zuccoti Park New York
https://www.google.ca/maps/@40.708974,-74.010718,3a,75y,270h,90t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sbvSKzxnrmAtqxYVBKTH64w!2e0

YOU ARE HIRED!

Empire, I'm appointing you to design a competing vision / proposal. Get it done.

ns_kid
May 2, 2014, 9:42 AM
Quite something. But as someone said -- we really screwed that up, didn't we?


PS: what is with the "Oakland" bus? A lost street?

The last I checked, Oakland Road has not been lost: It runs between Robie and Rockliffe in the south end. When the trolley coach system was set up in 1949 (in Halifax, it was never a "bus"!), route 6 ran from the late lamented Buckingham Street (now buried under Scotia Square) to the corner of Oxford and Coburg, via Barrington, Spring Garden, South Park, Inglis, and Robie, travelling on Oakland between Robie and Oxford. Inbound the route sign read 6 Buckingham. When Nova Scotia Light and Power reorganized trolley routes in 1963, the north end of route 6 was extended and the Oakland name was replaced by "South Oxford". As far as I know, trolley coaches continued to use Oakland Road until Halifax Transit took over in 1970.

It is poignant to see images of Barrington Street prior to the 1980's. It was always a vibrant commercial street, alive with light. It's why a I object to some self-proclaimed advocates for "heritage", who seek to transform streets like Barrington into sedate, colourless neighbourhoods of red brick and gold leaf, something they never were in real life.

JET
May 2, 2014, 1:48 PM
Where can I buy a fully serviced and approved residential lot close to schools, transit and stores in the centre of HRM for less than $40,000 or up to $60,000 ?
Any suggestions ?

In Dartmouth's 'Garden Patch', the trend seems to be to divide up an existing lot (like up the top of Pine Street), and put a couple of 'houses' on it. Not sure how much that plot of land went for

Colin May
May 2, 2014, 2:46 PM
In Dartmouth's 'Garden Patch', the trend seems to be to divide up an existing lot (like up the top of Pine Street), and put a couple of 'houses' on it. Not sure how much that plot of land went for

PVSC has the sale on April 30 212 as 2 parcels and sale price $140,000, not sure if that was for each lot or the total price.
In 2012 the assessed values were $45,200 for 49A Pine & $46,800 for 49B Pine.
Very cheap value for the neighbourhood. My lot is smaller and about 6-8 years ago the lot was assessed at $50,000 - the value that PVSC told me would apply if the house went up in flames.

JET
May 2, 2014, 4:25 PM
PVSC has the sale on April 30 212 as 2 parcels and sale price $140,000, not sure if that was for each lot or the total price.
In 2012 the assessed values were $45,200 for 49A Pine & $46,800 for 49B Pine.
Very cheap value for the neighbourhood. My lot is smaller and about 6-8 years ago the lot was assessed at $50,000 - the value that PVSC told me would apply if the house went up in flames.

wow, 20 years ago houses on Pine were $50-60,000. That's a lot for a lot

Colin May
May 2, 2014, 5:23 PM
wow, 20 years ago houses on Pine were $50-60,000. That's a lot for a lot
Up that end of Pine Street houses were much more than $50-60K.

JET
May 2, 2014, 6:11 PM
Up that end of Pine Street houses were much more than $50-60K.

yep, 50-60 were more lower garden patch

teddifax
May 2, 2014, 7:56 PM
Great article in The Coast May 1 to 7, 2014

Saying hello to Nova Scotia, for a reason
No jobs? No future? Not exactly. How Halifax’s down-in-the-dumps self-image doesn’t quite match reality
by Matthew Halliday
click to enlarge
opinion_voice-tsr.jpg
In the last quarter of 2013, only two Canadian provinces didn't lose residents to other regions. Alberta was the big gainer, welcoming 5,663 new residents to Wild Rose Country's parallel-universe economy.

The runner-up was—wait for it—Nova Scotia. Two thousand four hundred and sixty-five people left and 2,736 arrived, for a net gain of 271 newcomers. For the first time in years, more Canadians moved to Nova Scotia than away. Two thousand fourteen's numbers aren't out yet, but I know one person in the positive tally: me.

In February, I relocated from Toronto, in spite of warnings from expat Haligonians, who must be the world's most discouraging civic ambassadors. ("You leave Halifax," cautioned one.) I knew the city, and came for the revitalizing neighbourhoods, gorgeous historical building stock and access to Atlantic Canada's extraordinary amenities.

I also came for the economy.

Last year, several colleagues and I were laid off from (poorly paid) jobs at a Toronto magazine. Afterwards, I landed a temporary, no-benefits gig at a non-profit. I was lucky—more than 250 people applied. With Toronto's January unemployment rate above 10 percent (eight percent in the GTA), and over 40 percent of the region's jobs part-time or temporary, lots of friends and colleagues were living the roommates-and-ramen lifestyle into their 30s, stringing together sketchy freelance, contract or retail jobs, despite master's degrees and finely calibrated resumes. Statistics Canada made Halifax, by contrast, look positively enticing: higher employment levels, more full-time jobs, median incomes above Toronto's, Montreal's or Vancouver's, and a relatively low cost of living.

I knew I was moving against a prevailing westward trend. But I was still shocked to find Halifax's civic dialogue fixated on a masochistic narrative of decline—and on some bizarrely unrealistic notions of how much greener the grass is elsewhere. Maybe it's because I'm from Canada's capital of irrational boosterism (Calgary), but I'm starting to get chicken-or-egg feelings about our out-migration problem: What came first? The out-migration, or the endless lamentation about it?

Here in The Coast, there've been five pieces on the topic in four months (including two with the words "Farewell to Nova Scotia" right in the headline). All reflect an uncontested assumption that Halifax is...limiting. Uncompetitive. Poor. Not for the ambitious. The proof? No proof. We know. The thing is, on virtually all economic fundamentals—employment rates, job-market competitiveness, after-tax disposable incomes—Halifax compares to or bests national averages. (Note: I realize rural Nova Scotia is a whole different situation, see below.) So if our civic conversation is premised on a grossly exaggerated assumption of underperformance, how can it be honest, or productive? Well...it can't.

Consider youth unemployment: The consensus is that we're in crisis. But at 15 percent last year, our rate is little worse than the national rate: 14.5 percent. (Halifax's full-time youth employment even rose seven percent last year.) And while we do considerably worse than prairie cities, we're far from Canada's worst—Toronto's youth-unemployment rate just hit 23 percent.

Consider immigration: They just get here and head to Ontario or Alberta, right? Actually, our retention has skyrocketed. Halifax boasts among the highest immigrant-employment rates and incomes in the country. What's more, 40 percent are working in their chosen fields, compared to 24 percent in Ontario, or 22 percent in BC.

I could go on. After last fall's provincial election, ousted premier Darrell Dexter hinted at a similar gulf between belief and reality. Quoted in the Globe and Mail, he described constituents in the north end flatly denying the federal shipbuilding contract will create jobs, even though, he said, "Those people could look out their doors and see the cranes."

I'm not disputing our difficulties. Our economy is decent, not exceptional. Our demographics are worrisome. And the discrepancy between urban Nova Scotia and rural Nova Scotia is dramatic.

So this is not a plea for complacency, but for perspective. If we want to do better—and have an honest conversation about our future—we need to reject groundless grass-is-greenerism, which risks becoming self-fulfilling, driving people away out of cultural expectation more than necessity. We need to swap civic stereotypes for facts. Especially, we need to believe this is a remarkable place, with remarkable potential. Two hundred and seventy-one people just voted with their feet to that effect, after all.
click to enlarge
opinion_voice1b.jpg
Matthew Halliday has lived in Ottawa, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver, Calgary again, Edmonton, Toronto and now Halifax. He’d like to keep that list from growing any longer.

counterfactual
May 2, 2014, 9:18 PM
Great article in The Coast May 1 to 7, 2014

Saying hello to Nova Scotia, for a reason
No jobs? No future? Not exactly. How Halifax’s down-in-the-dumps self-image doesn’t quite match reality
by Matthew Halliday
click to enlarge
opinion_voice-tsr.jpg
In the last quarter of 2013, only two Canadian provinces didn't lose residents to other regions. Alberta was the big gainer, welcoming 5,663 new residents to Wild Rose Country's parallel-universe economy.

The runner-up was—wait for it—Nova Scotia. Two thousand four hundred and sixty-five people left and 2,736 arrived, for a net gain of 271 newcomers. For the first time in years, more Canadians moved to Nova Scotia than away. Two thousand fourteen's numbers aren't out yet, but I know one person in the positive tally: me.

In February, I relocated from Toronto, in spite of warnings from expat Haligonians, who must be the world's most discouraging civic ambassadors. ("You leave Halifax," cautioned one.) I knew the city, and came for the revitalizing neighbourhoods, gorgeous historical building stock and access to Atlantic Canada's extraordinary amenities.

I also came for the economy.

Last year, several colleagues and I were laid off from (poorly paid) jobs at a Toronto magazine. Afterwards, I landed a temporary, no-benefits gig at a non-profit. I was lucky—more than 250 people applied. With Toronto's January unemployment rate above 10 percent (eight percent in the GTA), and over 40 percent of the region's jobs part-time or temporary, lots of friends and colleagues were living the roommates-and-ramen lifestyle into their 30s, stringing together sketchy freelance, contract or retail jobs, despite master's degrees and finely calibrated resumes. Statistics Canada made Halifax, by contrast, look positively enticing: higher employment levels, more full-time jobs, median incomes above Toronto's, Montreal's or Vancouver's, and a relatively low cost of living.

I knew I was moving against a prevailing westward trend. But I was still shocked to find Halifax's civic dialogue fixated on a masochistic narrative of decline—and on some bizarrely unrealistic notions of how much greener the grass is elsewhere. Maybe it's because I'm from Canada's capital of irrational boosterism (Calgary), but I'm starting to get chicken-or-egg feelings about our out-migration problem: What came first? The out-migration, or the endless lamentation about it?

Here in The Coast, there've been five pieces on the topic in four months (including two with the words "Farewell to Nova Scotia" right in the headline). All reflect an uncontested assumption that Halifax is...limiting. Uncompetitive. Poor. Not for the ambitious. The proof? No proof. We know. The thing is, on virtually all economic fundamentals—employment rates, job-market competitiveness, after-tax disposable incomes—Halifax compares to or bests national averages. (Note: I realize rural Nova Scotia is a whole different situation, see below.) So if our civic conversation is premised on a grossly exaggerated assumption of underperformance, how can it be honest, or productive? Well...it can't.

Consider youth unemployment: The consensus is that we're in crisis. But at 15 percent last year, our rate is little worse than the national rate: 14.5 percent. (Halifax's full-time youth employment even rose seven percent last year.) And while we do considerably worse than prairie cities, we're far from Canada's worst—Toronto's youth-unemployment rate just hit 23 percent.

Consider immigration: They just get here and head to Ontario or Alberta, right? Actually, our retention has skyrocketed. Halifax boasts among the highest immigrant-employment rates and incomes in the country. What's more, 40 percent are working in their chosen fields, compared to 24 percent in Ontario, or 22 percent in BC.

I could go on. After last fall's provincial election, ousted premier Darrell Dexter hinted at a similar gulf between belief and reality. Quoted in the Globe and Mail, he described constituents in the north end flatly denying the federal shipbuilding contract will create jobs, even though, he said, "Those people could look out their doors and see the cranes."

I'm not disputing our difficulties. Our economy is decent, not exceptional. Our demographics are worrisome. And the discrepancy between urban Nova Scotia and rural Nova Scotia is dramatic.

So this is not a plea for complacency, but for perspective. If we want to do better—and have an honest conversation about our future—we need to reject groundless grass-is-greenerism, which risks becoming self-fulfilling, driving people away out of cultural expectation more than necessity. We need to swap civic stereotypes for facts. Especially, we need to believe this is a remarkable place, with remarkable potential. Two hundred and seventy-one people just voted with their feet to that effect, after all.
click to enlarge
opinion_voice1b.jpg
Matthew Halliday has lived in Ottawa, Montreal, Calgary, Vancouver, Calgary again, Edmonton, Toronto and now Halifax. He’d like to keep that list from growing any longer.

Isn't this our very own, DryBrain? :D

fenwick16
May 2, 2014, 9:25 PM
Isn't this our very own, DryBrain? Nice work, Dry.

That is what occurred to me as soon as I started reading the article. It sounds like Drybrain and he moved to Halifax recently.

Whether it is Drybrain or not, I agree with the article.

counterfactual
May 2, 2014, 9:57 PM
That is what occurred to me as soon as I started reading the article. It sounds like Drybrain and he moved to Halifax recently.

Whether it is Drybrain or not, I agree with the article.

Yeah, I was kidding (just edited my original post and added a smiley). I just thought it sounded like Drybrain-- "gorgeous historical building stock" sounds like something he'd write. Yeah, and the move from Toronto thing.

And it's a great piece either way. Although, I disagree on one count-- Halifax is more than dismal at youth hiring. There's a study out there -- the GHP I think-- showing that between 2006 and 2012, 97% of new jobs went to people over 45 years old. That means, ONLY 3% of new jobs went to people UNDER age 45, which is kinda sorta insane.

New Provincial Government seems to realize this is a prob. Hopefully.

Drybrain
May 2, 2014, 10:01 PM
Isn't this our very own, DryBrain? :D Nice work, Dry.

You got me. My internet anonymity is blown.

counterfactual
May 3, 2014, 1:44 AM
You got me. My internet anonymity is blown.

Well, whatever. Either way, good to have you in town as one of the 271!

Hope you stay and help build this place.

someone123
May 4, 2014, 2:33 AM
When I first saw that I knew exactly who wrote it!

I moved away from Halifax to go to get some experience living in other places and do grad school somewhere else. I don't regret that at all but I also did fine when I was in Halifax. The choice of a place to live is quite personal, but I think a lot of people who are struggling here in Vancouver would have a higher standard of living in Halifax.

I also think the day-to-day urban experience in Halifax is a lot closer to the mid-sized or larger Canadian cities than people are aware of or care to admit, particularly when you factor in the much better location you'll be able to live in in Halifax, all else being equal, and the enormous potential of the underdeveloped neighbourhoods there. The days of buying shabby but quaint pre-war homes for next to nothing in Toronto or Vancouver are long gone, but you can still fix up a rowhouse in the North End.

Occasionally my family talks to me about what it's like here and they have an inflated sense of this place. Yes, the weather is better (during some parts of the year). No, it is not LA, and no, you will not be able to afford those shiny houses you keep looking at on streetview.

counterfactual
May 4, 2014, 4:19 PM
Pretty much agree with this. NIMBYism is usually an expression of preserving social status, cachet, and property values.

Excerpt, with link to full story further below:


------

New book by Purple Line activist Ben Ross blames suburban sprawl on status-seeking

A prominent local transit activist’s provocative new book on the historical roots and eventual demise (he hopes) of suburban sprawl has its origins in a missing sidewalk and a snooty country club in Montgomery County.

Ben Ross, 65, a scientist by profession, led the grass-roots campaign for the light-rail Purple Line in the Maryland suburbs for 15 years.


His book, “Dead End: Suburban Sprawl and the Rebirth of American Urbanism,” is drawing praise for its well-researched analysis of why so many Americans live in widely dispersed, single-family homes and spend so many hours stuck in traffic.

It also casts light on the cultural forces at play in major disputes gripping our region over affordable housing, the “war on cars,” the Columbia Pike streetcar in Arlington, and the redevelopment of White Flint in Montgomery and Tysons Corner in Fairfax County.

Ross documents how a thirst for status drove the creation of such suburbs as Chevy Chase in the late 1800s and early 1900s.

That’s hardly a new insight. But experts say that Ross makes an original contribution by detailing how suburban dwellers have built a structure of zoning rules, housing covenants and other mechanisms to protect their social cachet.

That’s harmful, Ross contends, because it’s hampering the emergence of more diverse and environmentally friendly urban-style neighborhoods that a new generation desires.

He describes an ongoing struggle pitting “snob zoning” and NIMBYism vs. smart growth and economically mixed communities.

“Americans have long since lost their love for sprawl, yet they struggle to put something in its place,” Ross writes. A major obstacle, he says, is the resolve of owners of single-family homes to preserve “their privileged place in the residential pecking order.”




FULL STORY: http://www.washingtonpost.com/local/new-book-by-purple-line-activist-ben-ross-blames-suburban-sprawl-on-status-seeking/2014/05/03/2d7937be-d2d8-11e3-aae8-c2d44bd79778_story.html

Drybrain
May 5, 2014, 12:47 PM
I also think the day-to-day urban experience in Halifax is a lot closer to the mid-sized or larger Canadian cities than people are aware of or care to admit, particularly when you factor in the much better location you'll be able to live in in Halifax, all else being equal, and the enormous potential of the underdeveloped neighbourhoods there. The days of buying shabby but quaint pre-war homes for next to nothing in Toronto or Vancouver are long gone, but you can still fix up a rowhouse in the North End.



It didn't make it into the piece because I was working with a tight word limit, but I originally had a little bit about that as well--I've had a few nearly identical discussions with Haligonians who insist that though houses/condos are cheaper here, higher taxes eat away that advantage, which isn't true because A: After-tax disposable incomes are still higher in Halifax than in many cities (not the prairies or Ottawa though), and B: Some people don't understand just how absurdly, prohibitively pricey the real-estate market has become in TO/Van in the past decade.

Most of my friends and colleagues moving out of the rental/condo market and into ownership in TO are now out in little post-war bunkers in the nominally "up-and-coming" bits of Etobicoke and Scarborough, surrounded by nasty shopping plazas, congested arterial roads, and miles of faceless sprawl. These are middle-class people who want a small, reasonable urban townhouse in the central neighbourhoods they've lived in as renters, and just can't afford it. Even the shabby fixer-uppers are getting into millionaire territory.

Of course, I don't think Halifax can get complacent. It's still pricey enough on the peninsula that you can't just walk into a gorgeous Victorian the way you can in Hamilton or Saint John. But hey, it IS the regional capital.

beyeas
May 5, 2014, 2:57 PM
You got me. My internet anonymity is blown.

:tup:

Great article.

JET
May 5, 2014, 5:39 PM
It didn't make it into the piece because I was working with a tight word limit, but I originally had a little bit about that as well--I've had a few nearly identical discussions with Haligonians who insist that though houses/condos are cheaper here, higher taxes eat away that advantage, which isn't true because A: After-tax disposable incomes are still higher in Halifax than in many cities (not the prairies or Ottawa though), and B: Some people don't understand just how absurdly, prohibitively pricey the real-estate market has become in TO/Van in the past decade.

Most of my friends and colleagues moving out of the rental/condo market and into ownership in TO are now out in little post-war bunkers in the nominally "up-and-coming" bits of Etobicoke and Scarborough, surrounded by nasty shopping plazas, congested arterial roads, and miles of faceless sprawl. These are middle-class people who want a small, reasonable urban townhouse in the central neighbourhoods they've lived in as renters, and just can't afford it. Even the shabby fixer-uppers are getting into millionaire territory.

Of course, I don't think Halifax can get complacent. It's still pricey enough on the peninsula that you can't just walk into a gorgeous Victorian the way you can in Hamilton or Saint John. But hey, it IS the regional capital.

But you can in Dartmouth

xanaxanax
May 6, 2014, 4:35 PM
I thought these were already built on Cornwallis St but apparently more Glubes Lofts are going to be at 2128 and 2130 Gottingen next to the Theatre lofts http://www.glubeslofts.com/

halifaxboyns
May 6, 2014, 6:28 PM
I thought these were already built on Cornwallis St but apparently more Glubes Lofts are going to be at 2128 and 2130 Gottingen next to the Theatre lofts http://www.glubeslofts.com/

That was one of the last projects I worked on before leaving HRM.
Apparently some folks remaining at HRM didn't like it because it was 'outside of the box' thinking. We couldn't approve it because of subdivision issues and land use issues - I had to brow beat the development officers to plug their noses and go forward because of quirky legal issues. Glad I did; they aren't the greatest but a good addition to the area.

xanaxanax
May 6, 2014, 6:40 PM
That was one of the last projects I worked on before leaving HRM.
Apparently some folks remaining at HRM didn't like it because it was 'outside of the box' thinking. We couldn't approve it because of subdivision issues and land use issues - I had to brow beat the development officers to plug their noses and go forward because of quirky legal issues. Glad I did; they aren't the greatest but a good addition to the area.

They would look a heck of a lot better if they had some colour to them. Do you have any incite on if they have any intentions with the 2128 and 2130 Gottingen st, it looks like they plan to turn it into a mix residential and retail space

spaustin
May 6, 2014, 11:05 PM
But you can in Dartmouth

Yep. That's why 1/2 the homes on my little block of Tulip Street are owned by young professionals. The neighbourhood is crawling with kids.

someone123
May 7, 2014, 2:49 AM
I can't remember if this has been posted before, but does anybody know what this is? http://www.geoffkeddy.com/Commercial/album/slides/Portland-Street.jpg

someone123
May 7, 2014, 2:55 AM
They would look a heck of a lot better if they had some colour to them. Do you have any incite on if they have any intentions with the 2128 and 2130 Gottingen st, it looks like they plan to turn it into a mix residential and retail space

The Glubes townhouses on Cornwallis have been painted different colours fairly recently.

The plan for 2128 is interesting. That building has been under renovation for a while: https://www.google.com/maps/@44.65214,-63.583579,3a,75y,237.55h,109.13t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1s-cndujGc58IqTW_kYyxVOw!2e0

Hali87 took a photo of the site back in December: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=190128&page=4

xanaxanax
May 7, 2014, 3:47 AM
I can't remember if this has been posted before, but does anybody know what this is? http://www.geoffkeddy.com/Commercial/album/slides/Portland-Street.jpg

Hmmm its show a huge slope in the street. Could be Portland and Wentworth or Portland and Dundas, or next to Moffatts pharmacy. It sort of really looks like 140 Portland st in the corner of the rendering (edit) zooming in on the photo that is unmistakingly 140 Portland st in the bottom left corner and the side-walk curves the same way in the rendering as Portland and Dundas



Is this really the plans for the Green Lantern building along sackville street

http://www.geoffkeddy.com/Commercial/album/slides/Green-Lantern-1.jpg

Phalanx
May 7, 2014, 5:21 AM
I can't remember if this has been posted before, but does anybody know what this is? http://www.geoffkeddy.com/Commercial/album/slides/Portland-Street.jpg

Appears to be the corner of Portland and Dundas. Building to the left in the rendering appears to be 140 Portland, downward slope of the side street matches Dundas, so...

ns_kid
May 7, 2014, 8:43 AM
Is this really the plans for the Green Lantern building along sackville street

We're looking at the rear of the Green Lantern building on Granville Street in that view. I don 't believe this has gotten beyond the concept stage. The owner of the building was tied up in a dispute with his insurer and not willing to make a move on redevelopment until that was resolved.

someone123
May 7, 2014, 3:43 PM
We're looking at the rear of the Green Lantern building on Granville Street in that view. I don 't believe this has gotten beyond the concept stage. The owner of the building was tied up in a dispute with his insurer and not willing to make a move on redevelopment until that was resolved.

I'm pretty sure that rendering has been around since 2007 or so.

Colin May
May 8, 2014, 12:43 PM
Quiz: can you identify these world cities from their logos?

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/quiz/2014/may/08/quiz-world-city-logos-brands-tourism

Have fun

scooby074
May 8, 2014, 1:07 PM
Quiz: can you identify these world cities from their logos?

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/quiz/2014/may/08/quiz-world-city-logos-brands-tourism

Have fun

Got 4. If I went with my gut instead of my head I would have had 6 :D

Jonovision
May 8, 2014, 3:35 PM
I can't remember if this has been posted before, but does anybody know what this is? http://www.geoffkeddy.com/Commercial/album/slides/Portland-Street.jpg

The picture is also labeled as being Portland Street. Not sure what I think about it. Would need to see more.

Ziobrop
May 8, 2014, 3:49 PM
Quiz: can you identify these world cities from their logos?

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/quiz/2014/may/08/quiz-world-city-logos-brands-tourism

Have fun

I got 5/10

Ziobrop
May 8, 2014, 3:51 PM
CTV News is doing a story tonight on the Deplorable condition of the Ralston Building... they stopped me on the street to ask what I thought.

HalifaxRetales
May 8, 2014, 5:12 PM
Open City is this weekend

easy guide http://opencity.retales.ca

Drybrain
May 8, 2014, 5:29 PM
CTV News is doing a story tonight on the Deplorable condition of the Ralston Building... they stopped me on the street to ask what I thought.

Maybe they'll throw in the Dennis and do a piece on the generally shabby state of several provincial properties downtown. That'd be good--raise public awareness of the fact that as downtown revitalizes, the provincial government is at risk of becoming downtown's worst landlord.

counterfactual
May 8, 2014, 7:14 PM
Maybe they'll throw in the Dennis and do a piece on the generally shabby state of several provincial properties downtown. That'd be good--raise public awareness of the fact that as downtown revitalizes, the provincial government is at risk of becoming downtown's worst landlord.

Great idea.

Would be a great angle to take on downtown.

And quite possibly is true. Provincial Government has been pretty horrible and still remains so. So many parking lots empty sites rotting buildings can be laid at that government's feet.

Dmajackson
May 8, 2014, 7:22 PM
Demolition fencing is up around the north-west corner of Agricola & Bilby. There is no known redevelopment plan for this site.

https://farm3.staticflickr.com/2899/13952922168_f47d4a6c7f_c.jpg
Photo by Dmajackson a.k.a. Urban_Halifax on flickr.com (https://www.flickr.com/photos/urban_halifax/)

xanaxanax
May 8, 2014, 7:58 PM
Demolition fencing is up around the north-west corner of Agricola & Bilby. There is no known redevelopment plan for this site.



Some ship building contract group has been trying to buy friends of mines homes along Agricola to build office space so maybe its that.

Drybrain
May 8, 2014, 8:03 PM
Some ship building contract group has been trying to buy friends of mines homes along Agricola to build office space so maybe its that.

Really? Around which cross-street/address, if you don't mind my asking?

That's kind've a weird thing to be located on Agricola, and not very in keeping with the retail turn the street is taking.

xanaxanax
May 8, 2014, 8:11 PM
Really? Around which cross-street/address, if you don't mind my asking?

That's kind've a weird thing to be located on Agricola, and not very in keeping with the retail turn the street is taking.

They wanted to buy my friends places directly across from the Olands brewery and the deal didnt go through, I thought it was weird as well with the amount of vacant parking lots in the area. Word of mouth from him was that they were asking other home owners along the street.

Keith P.
May 8, 2014, 8:49 PM
Maybe they'll throw in the Dennis and do a piece on the generally shabby state of several provincial properties downtown. That'd be good--raise public awareness of the fact that as downtown revitalizes, the provincial government is at risk of becoming downtown's worst landlord.

The Ralston is federal though.

Drybrain
May 8, 2014, 9:04 PM
The Ralston is federal though.

Oh yeah. Oh well, governments of all sorts then. (Yeah, Dominion Building got a good makeover not long ago...)

spaustin
May 9, 2014, 1:54 AM
The picture is also labeled as being Portland Street. Not sure what I think about it. Would need to see more.

Indeed. Hard to say much from one rendering. It looks like it's the corner of Dundas and Portland where May Garden and that yellow house are now. Would be great to get more people Downtown, but I'm not really a fan of the wide storefront out front and the unbroken street wall. Its better than Seacoast Tower on the other side (now there is a dead streetfront), but it could be way better. Portland is a traditional main street made up of narrow lots. New development is great to see, but it should reflect that character. I like the approach of the Vic or Founders Corner: A diverse podium with a tower above to add density. Anyway, it's barely out of the gate so lots can change yet.

Colin May
May 9, 2014, 4:31 PM
HRM staff recommending sale of St Pat's Alexandra and rejection of community bid.

" It is recommended that Halifax Regional Council:

1. Decline the proposal from the North Central Community Council Association, as per the
Evaluation of Submissions for the Disposal of St. Pat’s Alexandra (Attachment B); and
2. Conditional upon the satisfactory resolution of any remaining appeals of the Supreme
Court decision of September 24, 2012, direct HRM staff to proceed to sell the property at
market value, as per the “Special Procedure for Disposal of St. Pat’s Alexandra” (see
Attachment A for “Appendix A” from the October 30, 2012 Regional Council motion) "

http://halifax.ca/council/agendasc/documents/140513ca1113.pdf

Ziobrop
May 9, 2014, 5:45 PM
I would have liked to see the community bid.

From the staff report, it sounds as though it is well thought out, that staff acknowledge the need exists, and the proponents are capable of delivering.

The issue is financing. There seems to be alot of borrowed money in this proposal, and Im not sure how confident their revenue projections could be. I also question the wisdom of a community group essentially offering 100% financing on 30% to be available for first- time home buyers, who would be eligible for a 20% down payment repayable loan

EDIT:
The proposal is available online
http://ournorthend.ca/img/nccc-spas-submission.pdf

xanaxanax
May 9, 2014, 7:02 PM
Maybe a bit of calcification on something about the community bid but why is the Mi'kmaw Native Friendship Centre fighting for space for the St. Pat’s Alexandra site when they were given the Spring Garden Road Memorial Public Library, its theirs if they want it according to the City and Province to use. Its more than enough space for the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq to use as a cultural museum and fit any rolls the Friendship Centre had. http://thechronicleherald.ca/metro/873653-mi-kmaq-association-offered-library-building

Keith P.
May 9, 2014, 7:31 PM
Maybe a bit of calcification on something about the community bid but why is the Mi'kmaw Native Friendship Centre fighting for space for the St. Pat’s Alexandra site when they were given the Spring Garden Road Memorial Public Library, its theirs if they want it according to the City and Province to use. Its more than enough space for the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq to use as a cultural museum and fit any rolls the Friendship Centre had. http://thechronicleherald.ca/metro/873653-mi-kmaq-association-offered-library-building

Because these groups are like their clientele. They always have their hand out to govt for anything they can take.

I'm glad the reco is to sell the property. That's what should have happened in the first place if the good Rev. Britten hadn't had a tantrum way back when. I hope Joe Metledge is awarded many millions of dollars and the city then goes after those responsible for this debacle. Or maybe Mr. Butts figures the only way to offset the inevitable court award is to sell it.

Hali87
May 9, 2014, 8:15 PM
I don't think that the Mi'kmaq Native Friendship Centre and the Assembly of NS Mi'kmaq Chiefs are the same thing. I'm sure they are related organizations but I wouldn't assume that space that is offered to one is automatically available to the other.

xanaxanax
May 9, 2014, 9:45 PM
I don't think that the Mi'kmaq Native Friendship Centre and the Assembly of NS Mi'kmaq Chiefs are the same thing. I'm sure they are related organizations but I wouldn't assume that space that is offered to one is automatically available to the other.

I think its information worth knowing. If the Mi'kmaq Native Friendship Centre can operate out Assembly of NS Mi'kmaq space at the old Public Library than their stance for the St. Pat’s Alexandra site has always been a little ridiculous. Why wouldn't you have a community centre for Mi'kmaq in the Library if the ownership is passed to them, it has the perfect setup for one. At the very least the City and these two groups should be having a discussion on what can be accommodated together in this space.

Colin May
May 9, 2014, 11:05 PM
Because these groups are like their clientele. They always have their hand out to govt for anything they can take.

I'm glad the reco is to sell the property. That's what should have happened in the first place if the good Rev. Britten hadn't had a tantrum way back when. I hope Joe Metledge is awarded many millions of dollars and the city then goes after those responsible for this debacle. Or maybe Mr. Butts figures the only way to offset the inevitable court award is to sell it.
Metlej doesn't have a chance of winning. The judge also tossed his bid, saying that the property was not sold at market value because Metlej was willing to pay an amount more than any other bid. It's just a nuisance suit. When you sign an agreement with a person or a body you are supposed to ensure that they have the legal capacity to conclude the transaction. This was one of several cases where staff have played "Damn the torpedos, full steam ahead"

Lotuspoint is another example where staff deliberately ignored the legal opinion from Heritage Trust at the HAC meeting and then when a date for the public hearing was set the lawyer for Heritage Trust sent the same opinion on the day of the hearing and advised that they would advise their client to pursue legal action if the requirements of legislation and policies were not followed. Faced with the letter the staff rushed to change their report and then presented their revised recommendation at the hearing. The developer is now required to follow the legislation and the project will have to be returned to HAC, it was not on the agenda for the May 7 HAC meeting.
The community council went ahead and held a hearing into a recommendation that was not the one that had been advertised. The architect was less than truthful in his application.
The law is our friend.

xanaxanax
May 9, 2014, 11:35 PM
The court of appeal ruling is in the next couple of weeks, it will be interesting if anything changes

Keith P.
May 9, 2014, 11:51 PM
The law is our friend.

And obstructionists like the Heritage Trust are the enemy to us ever getting out of the ditch.

counterfactual
May 10, 2014, 12:41 AM
Metlej doesn't have a chance of winning. The judge also tossed his bid, saying that the property was not sold at market value because Metlej was willing to pay an amount more than any other bid. It's just a nuisance suit. When you sign an agreement with a person or a body you are supposed to ensure that they have the legal capacity to conclude the transaction. This was one of several cases where staff have played "Damn the torpedos, full steam ahead"


Well, sounds like court has an unusual conception of FMV. It is not crystallized; it changes, sometimes quickly.

The best approximation of FMV, is what a person, at arm's length, is willing to pay for an item.

If one party is willing to "pay more" than any other bid, than that would seem to suggest a FMV higher than any current bids; whatever, in the end, that party pays (and is not subsequently bid up by anyone else) is the best estimate of FMV.

counterfactual
May 10, 2014, 12:44 AM
I would have liked to see the community bid.

From the staff report, it sounds as though it is well thought out, that staff acknowledge the need exists, and the proponents are capable of delivering.

The issue is financing. There seems to be alot of borrowed money in this proposal, and Im not sure how confident their revenue projections could be. I also question the wisdom of a community group essentially offering 100% financing on 30% to be available for first- time home buyers, who would be eligible for a 20% down payment repayable loan

EDIT:
The proposal is available online
http://ournorthend.ca/img/nccc-spas-submission.pdf


Quote from Proposal:

"....local arts group and other non-profit organizations have faced a shrinking supply of reasonably-priced rental space in peninsular Halifax..."

Uhm. Whut?

Vacancy rates for office rental have never been higher on the peninsula.

counterfactual
May 10, 2014, 12:51 AM
I think its information worth knowing. If the Mi'kmaq Native Friendship Centre can operate out Assembly of NS Mi'kmaq space at the old Public Library than their stance for the St. Pat’s Alexandra site has always been a little ridiculous. Why wouldn't you have a community centre for Mi'kmaq in the Library if the ownership is passed to them, it has the perfect setup for one. At the very least the City and these two groups should be having a discussion on what can be accommodated together in this space.

Speaking of which, what the hell is going on with the Old Spring Garden library?

That spot has so much potential. Why didn't we think bigger; create a multi-use public / private development, with space for Mi'kmaq Government, but also for other forms of public spaces--- maybe a large public square-- with also some room for businesses, big or small, street level merchant huts for a neat market style strip, etc.

That is now a space at the heart of the most vibrant area of downtown, linking the past and future of that core-- Barrington and Spring Garden-- and all signs now seem to point to it sitting there, collecting dust, for years and years.

xanaxanax
May 10, 2014, 1:40 AM
Speaking of which, what the hell is going on with the Old Spring Garden library?

That spot has so much potential. Why didn't we think bigger; create a multi-use public / private development, with space for Mi'kmaq Government, but also for other forms of public spaces--- maybe a large public square-- with also some room for businesses, big or small, street level merchant huts for a neat market style strip, etc.

That is now a space at the heart of the most vibrant area of downtown, linking the past and future of that core-- Barrington and Spring Garden-- and all signs now seem to point to it sitting there, collecting dust, for years and years.

Well if they turn it into a Mi'kmaq culutre museum that's kind of a big deal and will add a lot to the city imo that decision is coming in june if they want to use it for that. I hope they mean culture history museum anways when they say culture place for them.

Colin May
May 10, 2014, 1:51 AM
Well, sounds like court has an unusual conception of FMV. It is not crystallized; it changes, sometimes quickly.

The best approximation of FMV, is what a person, at arm's length, is willing to pay for an item.

If one party is willing to "pay more" than any other bid, than that would seem to suggest a FMV higher than any current bids; whatever, in the end, that party pays (and is not subsequently bid up by anyone else) is the best estimate of FMV.
The decision by Justice MacAdam, a Conservative, is easy to find and is based on decisions in previous cases. It deals with procedural fairness and FMV. The argument by the plaintiffs re 'procedural fairness' was a slam dunk.

Colin May
May 10, 2014, 2:09 AM
And obstructionists like the Heritage Trust are the enemy to us ever getting out of the ditch.

'The enemy to us ever getting out of the ditch' are the incompetent planning staff and the legal staff.

Read the UARB decisions and the documents in the Monaco case and the Lawen appeal of the approval of the CanEuro tower.( I have the documents) The planners are named and shamed. It is embarrassing to see professional planners so comprehensively cut to shreds by their peers, one of whom was a former Director of Planning of the City of Dartmouth.
Any reasonable person reviewing the four issues would question what is going on at city hall.
What do you think of a planner who handles an application and after reviewing all the documents believes the project is adjacent to a two way street when the street is, and always has been, a heavily travelled, one way street ?
A 10 minute walk from his office to the property would have made him aware of the property, its surroundings and the one way street.

counterfactual
May 10, 2014, 4:14 AM
'The enemy to us ever getting out of the ditch' are the incompetent planning staff and the legal staff.

Read the UARB decisions and the documents in the Monaco case and the Lawen appeal of the approval of the CanEuro tower.( I have the documents) The planners are named and shamed. It is embarrassing to see professional planners so comprehensively cut to shreds by their peers, one of whom was a former Director of Planning of the City of Dartmouth.
Any reasonable person reviewing the four issues would question what is going on at city hall.
What do you think of a planner who handles an application and after reviewing all the documents believes the project is adjacent to a two way street when the street is, and always has been, a heavily travelled, one way street ?
A 10 minute walk from his office to the property would have made him aware of the property, its surroundings and the one way street.

I'm no fan of the HRM planning staff for many reasons, often because they, like any bureaucracy, take the path of least resistance on on planning issues. Sometimes that might mean quickly flipping a property and ignoring community input (St. Pats) but most often, it involves resistance to substantial changes in how the city plans, and how it might change directions to improve planning overall, including deferring to small groups of loudmouth but well funded and/or connected lobbyists.

That said, I do think HRM planners suffer from workload issues; a blatant error like that suggests as much. I mean, it took HRM years to hire a new head planner (that guy who was fired in Saskatchewan for being too urbanist or something)

bluenoser
May 10, 2014, 7:31 AM
The canal daylighting between Sullivan's Pond and the Harbour is getting back underway:

Shubenacadie Canal excavation starts this summer
Project stalled for seven years, but restoration should be done by 2015
CBC News Posted: May 09, 2014 2:38 PM AT Last Updated: May 09, 2014 2:38 PM AT

http://i.cbc.ca/1.2637631.1399657041!/fileImage/httpImage/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/16x9_620/a-rendering-of-what-the-rebuilt-shubenacadie-canal-site-will-look-like-next-year.jpg
A rendering of what the rebuilt Shubenacadie Canal site will look like next year. (Courtesy HRM) - Source: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/shubenacadie-canal-excavation-starts-this-summer-1.2637619

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/shubenacadie-canal-excavation-starts-this-summer-1.2637619

ns_kid
May 10, 2014, 12:28 PM
CTV News is doing a story tonight on the Deplorable condition of the Ralston Building... they stopped me on the street to ask what I thought.

Here is a link to the CTV story:
http://atlantic.ctvnews.ca/downtown-halifax-construction-raising-safety-concerns-among-pedestrians-1.1813151

There's not really much of substance there, including the usual pap from the Kevin Lacey, self-appointed champion of taxpayers everywhere, though I don't recall ever voting for him.

The Ralston Building, despite millions in renovations from 1999-2001, is crumbling. The CTV story doesn't mention that the building will be vacant within the next year. There's very little doubt in my mind that it will be demolished after that; it will require many millons more to restore. (A federal official has told me the land will be worth more with the building removed.)

In the meantime, those now working in the Ralston are facing several months of blasting through the bedrock next door. It will not be pleasant. Those working on the building's lower floors felt every blast on the Nova Centre site four blocks away. The fear that the Ralston will suffer further damage as a result of the Maple excavation is, I believe, quite valid.

Colin May
May 10, 2014, 3:44 PM
I'm no fan of the HRM planning staff for many reasons, often because they, like any bureaucracy, take the path of least resistance on on planning issues. Sometimes that might mean quickly flipping a property and ignoring community input (St. Pats) but most often, it involves resistance to substantial changes in how the city plans, and how it might change directions to improve planning overall, including deferring to small groups of loudmouth but well funded and/or connected lobbyists.

That said, I do think HRM planners suffer from workload issues; a blatant error like that suggests as much. I mean, it took HRM years to hire a new head planner (that guy who was fired in Saskatchewan for being too urbanist or something)

I also think they are overworked. I think they feel pressured by senior staff, sections of the community and the council to approve almost anything. The details of the 4 issues I mentioned have never been given adequate media attention, and I doubt members of council have ever explored the decisions.
I believe some of the grandfathered approvals outside the urban core and detailed in RP+5 should be scrapped, but that is a political minefield.
The mistakes would not occur if the legal staff were more forceful in explaining the law rather than taking their cues from Butts and or council.
I strongly believe the solicitor should report directly to council and thus be free of any influence of a CAO - the normal situation in many Canadian cities.

xanaxanax
May 10, 2014, 6:30 PM
Does anyone know what used to be on the corner of Hollis and South, some building that burnt down years ago, I'm surprised the owner never rebuilt anything in its place, its just been a fenced off dirt lot for years that I can't even recall what it used to be.

xanaxanax
May 10, 2014, 6:48 PM
Does anyone know what used to be on the corner of Hollis and South, some building that burnt down years ago, I'm surprised the owner never rebuilt anything in its place, its just been a fenced off dirt lot for years that I can't even recall what it used to be.

Alright I found out what it was and found there was a height limit increase proposal for it over a year ago, does anyone know if that went through? I'm still surprised theres never been a proposal to build something new there http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/barrington-street-height-limit-increase-considered-1.1334253

counterfactual
May 10, 2014, 7:19 PM
I also think they are overworked. I think they feel pressured by senior staff, sections of the community and the council to approve almost anything. The details of the 4 issues I mentioned have never been given adequate media attention, and I doubt members of council have ever explored the decisions.
I believe some of the grandfathered approvals outside the urban core and detailed in RP+5 should be scrapped, but that is a political minefield.
The mistakes would not occur if the legal staff were more forceful in explaining the law rather than taking their cues from Butts and or council.
I strongly believe the solicitor should report directly to council and thus be free of any influence of a CAO - the normal situation in many Canadian cities.

Exactly. The RP+5 original and newer draft are both a disaster, both in text and in the result. Planning staff essentially would prefer community groups and urbanist stakeholders to shut up, so they can continue with the sprawl planning (because it's really easy... sprawl planning is no planning and less work). Good planning is hard work. So an overworked planning staff is going to lead to bad planning. Period.

I totally agree that a bunch of crappy previously approved sprawl developments should be scrapped, and HRM double down on intensifying peninsular residential densification and ending the perpetual sprawl.

Here is what RP+5 should do:


Immediate moratorium on any more office and commercial space development outside the core for 10 years. Just like London, Ontario.


Dartmouth Crossing should be frozen. Period. Re-zone half that garbage pit into urban forest and block any new residential, retail, or commercial space development. Industrial development could be allowed on specific application.


Similar for Burnside -- no more sprawl expansiveness, stealing office tenants from downtown by sprawl crap.


Immediate moratorium on any more HRM land sales for residential sprawl development for decades until reserve lands used.


Could also follow Ottawa, which placed a moratorium on downtown development charges in 1994 to incentivize more residential development in Ottawa's core. This, too, was a success, attracting 1,100 new people to the core.




We should be making significant policy moves like this.

MeEtc
May 10, 2014, 9:25 PM
Does anyone know what used to be on the corner of Hollis and South, some building that burnt down years ago, I'm surprised the owner never rebuilt anything in its place, its just been a fenced off dirt lot for years that I can't even recall what it used to be.

https://www.google.ca/maps/@44.640261,-63.569442,3a,75y,347.43h,96.73t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sfMF1Ja5Szov5qivjMP53yA!2e0

There's the building, I don't remember what was inside.

teddifax
May 10, 2014, 10:03 PM
https://www.google.ca/maps/@44.640261,-63.569442,3a,75y,347.43h,96.73t/data=!3m4!1e1!3m2!1sfMF1Ja5Szov5qivjMP53yA!2e0

There's the building, I don't remember what was inside.

Café Chianti was there and at one time there was a shoe store in this block as well. There were residences above the ground floor retail.