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  #261  
Old Posted Apr 16, 2012, 5:51 AM
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The renderings are vague though. The elevations provide more detail but don't show how the buildings fit in with the neighbourhood. It would be interesting to see some skyline and aerial photos with the new buildings. It would also be nice to see views down South Street, Queen Street, and Fenwick Street that include other buildings for context.
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  #262  
Old Posted Apr 16, 2012, 12:30 PM
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You are correct, but I'm wondering what those 6 or 9 month approval times take into account. My guess is that they do not factor in delays like this one or the Drum condo problem.
At a guess, Drum must have some non-conforming aspects. HRMbD has short approval windows for as of right development only, otherwise it is back to the long process.

But that is a guess.

Fenwick is outside HRMbD so it has to take the long route, too. This could be helped by the Centre Plan, but so far I feel the Centre Plan is not aggressive enough with its proposal for as of right mid-rise development areas.
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  #263  
Old Posted Apr 17, 2012, 2:19 AM
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At a guess, Drum must have some non-conforming aspects. HRMbD has short approval windows for as of right development only, otherwise it is back to the long process.
I do not remember the specific rules that the Drum developer has a problem with, but it was something to do with open space requirements. The redevelopment of the empty lot on Spring Garden Road where there was a fire a couple of years ago is being held up by the same requirement. My sense of the issue is that they are being asked to set aside a portion of the lot for greenspace when most developments in that area actually have almost 100% lot coverage. It makes no sense to require greenspace along Spring Garden Road or right next to the Public Gardens. I would argue that it is not really fair to require public greenspace from a private development, and private greenspace is really an issue that can be determined by the market.

My impression of HRM planning and regional council is, basically, that they never met a rule they didn't like. The response to every problem or "nice to have" brought up by the public seems to be to add more and more red tape. This probably happens because these policies have zero up-front cost. They may cause all sorts of problems down the road but when you're trying to push HRM by Design through right now the easiest path is just to say yes to as many people as possible, pushing the resolution of tough questions into the future when it will cost more money and cause more headaches.
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  #264  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 2:10 AM
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In Halifax, battle lines drawn in controversy over views and vistas

JANE TABER AND AND ANNA MEHLER PAPERNY
HALIFAX— From Wednesday's Globe and Mail
Published Tuesday, Apr. 17, 2012 9:05PM EDT
Last updated Tuesday, Apr. 17, 2012 9:09PM EDT

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/...rticle2405838/
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  #265  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 2:11 PM
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From the article:

Joe Metlege has had to put on hold his $150-million redevelopment project of Fenwick Tower, originally built in 1969. Last month, permits in hand and work about to begin, he discovered the corners on one side of the 12th floor of the 34-storey apartment building would protrude 3.5 feet into the viewplane from Citadel Hill to the harbour.

He alerted the city.


A part of me wishes he didn't alert the city.

Would anyone have noticed 3.5 feet...all the way from the hill?
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  #266  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 2:37 PM
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You have to wonder if this could be a stall tactic by the developer? He had all the permits. If he had gone ahead no one could argue with it and in all likelyhood no one would ever know.
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  #267  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 2:39 PM
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It seems like Metlege wants to just challenge the city on this, just to say he beat the view plane legislation (if he wins). He has been commenting a lot on Facebook about making changes to this old rule and this might be his way to do that.
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  #268  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 4:51 PM
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Survey's are required when any development is completed prior to getting occupancy permits.. would anyone notice the 3.5 feet, visually no.. would the surveyor pick it up in their new survey's yes.. Bishops landing was required to chisel 7" off of their elevator shaft after it was completed due to surveyors shots after construction.. on a project of this size, and when you're a developer for the long run in this city, one cannot afford to risk the financial or reputation damage that would be caused by a delay in occupancy permits, or non-conformity to a DA
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  #269  
Old Posted Apr 18, 2012, 4:53 PM
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This thread is for discussion of the renovations and new buildings planned for Fenwick Tower and adjacent lands.

Location: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&sour...08041&t=h&z=18

Old thread: http://forum.skyscraperpage.com/showthread.php?t=152348
Could the threat be updated to say 34/10/8 fl Approved
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  #270  
Old Posted Apr 19, 2012, 9:53 AM
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... I would argue that it is not really fair to require public greenspace from a private development, and private greenspace is really an issue that can be determined by the market...
It's only fair if it is generated with reasonable intent, described clearly, and applied consistently. Private interests are held to all kinds of rules when developing - from the combustibility of exterior cladding (varies according to distance from property line and use of building), to maximum (again, related to property lines) and minimum areas for glazing, to "quality" requirements for claddings.

I'm not going to argue that all are fair and I don't know the specifics of the open space requirements, but it's hard to draw the line between disallowing vinyl siding on Spring Garden (and that is just as much an imposition on a developer) and requiring open space.
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  #271  
Old Posted Apr 19, 2012, 1:15 PM
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Originally Posted by RyeJay View Post
From the article:

Joe Metlege has had to put on hold his $150-million redevelopment project of Fenwick Tower, originally built in 1969. Last month, permits in hand and work about to begin, he discovered the corners on one side of the 12th floor of the 34-storey apartment building would protrude 3.5 feet into the viewplane from Citadel Hill to the harbour.

He alerted the city.


A part of me wishes he didn't alert the city.

Would anyone have noticed 3.5 feet...all the way from the hill?
Good article, I found this quite interesting:
"The encroachment, caused by a new glass skin that was to be put on tower’s exterior, is indiscernible to the naked eye from Citadel Hill, which is about a kilometre away. It has been described by Robert Stapells, the former city councillor who helped created the viewplane rules, as the “equivalent of attaching a sewing needle to the building.”
points out how ridiculous it really is.
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  #272  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2012, 1:33 PM
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Just a nice shot from the citadel to show the buildings prominence.

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  #273  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2012, 4:39 PM
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I was in London, and everywhere we went we could see the Millennium Eye; same as Fenwick.
In London it was very interesting to see the very old, right next to the very new. It can work. They have so much old, ours is vanishing.
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  #274  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2012, 5:21 PM
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They have so much old, ours is vanishing.
I feel that groups like the HT need to share the blame for that though.
They are part of creating an economic climate in which there are little to no incentives to save older buildings, and the more they promote that tall (i.e. high property/commercial tax paying) buildings go elsewhere other than downtown, the more they end up having a role in creating the conditions for buildings to be torn down. Their entire argument about renovating heritage buildings is that developers should just do it out of the goodness of their own hearts. HT are ignoring economics at their own peril.

Creating the economic incentives to renovate heritage structures is how you save heritage structures. Preventing tall buildings from being built on empty lots is how you decrease the tax base and lose heritage structures.

I am not absolving all developers of any role, but HT owns part of this problem too. A real Heritage Trust would proactively propose realistic and proactive solutions to the actual problems, rather than acting as nothing but a road-block for change. HT reactively criticizes, but does not proactively propose realistic solutions (as opposed to "solutions" involving having the evil filthy rich developers spend their money to uneconomically renovate buildings).
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  #275  
Old Posted Apr 26, 2012, 6:15 PM
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For years the city has been completely out to lunch when it comes to the economics of the downtown and heritage buildings. Some people didn't care and others didn't understand. I think it's changing a little but the situation is still pretty bad -- consider how little construction has happened along Barrington, for example, and how many sites nearby have been kept in limbo for one reason or another.

I think a lot of people (HT and members of the general public) have a mental model of a 1950's-style bustling city of heritage buildings. They see that as a kind of default situation, even if they don't explicitly think about it much, and they feel like that is what developers are pulling the city away from. Meanwhile, we're living in the world of Bayers Lake and Amazon. Those 1950's assumptions should be tossed today.

Another change I'd like to see is the view that Halifax could today be building the heritage buildings of the future. New buildings have a bad reputation because most of what was built from the 1960's up until now has been awful. That doesn't have to continue, and actually I think the possibilities are far greater today than they have been for a long time in Halifax. If the city plays its cards right it can have great buildings and great neighbourhoods.
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  #276  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2012, 3:19 AM
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Just a nice shot from the citadel to show the buildings prominence.

So, the extra 3-5 ft is going to block the view of what??????????
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  #277  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2012, 4:38 AM
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So, the extra 3-5 ft is going to block the view of what??????????
As far as I know, nobody has even argued that the view is significant. All that I have seen is an abstract and fallacious slippery slope type argument.

I don't think there will be a problem amending the viewplane as far as regional council is concerned, but the delay is unfortunate.
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  #278  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2012, 10:55 AM
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As far as I know, nobody has even argued that the view is significant. All that I have seen is an abstract and fallacious slippery slope type argument.

I don't think there will be a problem amending the viewplane as far as regional council is concerned, but the delay is unfortunate.
I would agree... I think the argument against this is not the the viewplanes protect views of THINGS, but that their existence highlights the historic function of the citadel as part of a system of military protections.
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  #279  
Old Posted Apr 27, 2012, 9:48 PM
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There is some interesting information about Fenwick Tower on the Dalhousie University website - http://www.library.dal.ca/duasc/buildings/Fenwick.htm .
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  #280  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2012, 5:13 PM
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There is also the ace of Templeton being transparent. Something that has more weight in future debates that might arise on other projects.
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