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  #41  
Old Posted May 13, 2008, 10:10 PM
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What's the difference between 21 stories and 27 stories?! Seems ridiculous. I mean... once you get over 10-12 stories... who cares how tall it is? It's not like Pacey will be jumping for joy over a 21 story building versus a 27 story building. Who are they trying to please? Why compromise on your design? When it comes to design... compromise usually has detrimental results.
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  #42  
Old Posted May 13, 2008, 11:40 PM
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In Halifax, if you don't compromise your design your building is never built.

The 27 tower proposal was already officially submitted and was shot down by two councillors on the four member PAC (they voted not to even let it go to public consultation).
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  #43  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 12:17 AM
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Well if i interperted council correctly the new building is allowed to proceed to public meetings. Harvey could possible be right that this will be "TexPark 2". Main difference though, glass versus brick/stone..
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  #44  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 12:55 AM
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Well if i interperted council correctly the new building is allowed to proceed to public meetings. Harvey could possible be right that this will be "TexPark 2". Main difference though, glass versus brick/stone..
Not to mention the restoration of Keith Hall.

I personally cant see this getting anywhere near the controversy that the UG towers got.
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  #45  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 1:16 AM
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Yeah, I don't see this getting the attention that the UG towers got, but who knows I guess.

What about the Brenton St development is that going to public hearing as well?
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  #46  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 2:14 AM
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Yep. It sailed through with barely a whisper. Doesn't look like they'll be many problems with that one. Given the tone from this evening, I'm not optomistic that the Alexander will survive a public hearing, especially in an election year which is a shame. I think the original deserved to be shot down but it looks and sounds like the developer has adjusted things for the better. This one isn't perfect, but on balance I think it's acceptable and it will probably do wonders to further revitalize those blocks south of the downtown (the unpaved vacant lot certainly isn't helping). It'll be a pity if it doesn't make it.
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  #47  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 4:00 PM
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An article from today Herald. (I'm posting it in both towers respective threads.)

Downtown projects move ahead
21-storey condo development and 19-storey residential building sent to public hearings
By AMY PUGSLEY FRASER City Hall Reporter
Wed. May 14 - 5:37 AM

It was a big night Tuesday at city hall for two proposed downtown developments after council agreed to send both to public hearings.

The projects are a 21-storey condo Halkirk wants to build on the south side of its Brewery Market property and a 19-storey residential building the W.M. Fares group is eyeing for the corner of Brenton and South Park streets.

While the Fares proposal elicited no debate among councillors, there were a few comments about Halkirk’s $30-million development.

That’s because the building, which had a thumbs-up from city planning staffers, drew some negative response from council’s heritage advisory committee.

That committee and the downtown planning advisory committee assist council by reviewing projects to ensure they fit within the city’s heritage and planning strategies.

Coun. Sue Uteck (Northwest Arm-South End) wondered whether the volunteers who sit on city boards have their responsibilities well outlined to them, especially when the projects are already recommended by city planning staffers.

"When you turn down a positive recommendation from staff, you are supposed to quote the applicable sections of the heritage act or the land-use bylaw or the (municipal planning strategy) that apply to that."

Neither of the advisory board reports on the project did that, she said.

"To me, it’s not the fault of the committees. . . . But if you are going to have a developer, in this particular instance, that has to go the 27 rounds we’d say in golf, then (the committees had) better have some concrete understanding of where they’re coming from before they get to . . . council."

But Coun. Dawn Sloane (Halifax Downtown) said the developer altered his plan within the last week, adding window and balcony bays to what had been a blank, sheer wall on the Bishop Street side.

"He went back and changed it . . . because I wasn’t willing to even take this to the public."

Coun. Patrick Murphy (Halifax North End) wondered whether accompanying multimillion-dollar renovations to Keith Hall, the 1863 mansion built for beer baron and former Halifax mayor Alexander Keith, would include interior as well as exterior building restoration.

While planner Paul Sampson said interior designs were not part of the development agreement, Ms. Sloane explained that original stained glass windows and other architectural features would remain intact.

Another councillor wondered how the new developments would be handled with the city’s downtown planning project, called HRM By Design, in the works.

Although the city has drafted new rules for downtown development through the project, the area is still governed by the old guidelines until council approves and implements the new plan.

That had Coun. Bob Harvey (Lower Sackville) wondering if any decision on the Halkirk proposal would be superseded by the new guidelines.

"It’s going to be a race between public hearings for these amendments and for the Halifax By Design amendments. I mean, which are we going to get first?"

Austin French, manager of planning, said the HRM By Design proposals probably wouldn’t be before council until mid-summer.

The public hearings on both downtown developments will likely be held within the next month.

( apugsley@herald.ca)
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  #48  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 6:02 PM
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Originally Posted by spaustin View Post
Yep. It sailed through with barely a whisper. Doesn't look like they'll be many problems with that one. Given the tone from this evening, I'm not optomistic that the Alexander will survive a public hearing, especially in an election year which is a shame. I think the original deserved to be shot down but it looks and sounds like the developer has adjusted things for the better. This one isn't perfect, but on balance I think it's acceptable and it will probably do wonders to further revitalize those blocks south of the downtown (the unpaved vacant lot certainly isn't helping). It'll be a pity if it doesn't make it.
I am pretty optimistic about the actual council vote. My main concern is that it will be appealed by the same old crew of myopic obstructionists.
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  #49  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 6:18 PM
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I am pretty optimistic about the actual council vote. My main concern is that it will be appealed by the same old crew of myopic obstructionists.
I just don't see any basis for an argument. It would fit into the area perfectly...
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  #50  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 6:22 PM
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There doesn't have to be a basis for an argument, they just need to come up with the $600 or whatever it is and then a stack of paper to keep the URB busy for a year.

I agree that there is no reasonable argument against the proposal at this point - it's shorter than the nearby Maritime Centre, there are lots of mid-scale buildings surrounding it, the developers have shortened the height in response to criticism (i.e. this is already a compromise with those who will likely appeal it anyway), the current lot is unsightly and in an important, visible area, and the proposal includes money for the badly needed restoration of Keith Hall.
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  #51  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 7:07 PM
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There doesn't have to be a basis for an argument, they just need to come up with the $600 or whatever it is and then a stack of paper to keep the URB busy for a year.
How about the Province look at abandoning the URB and let things move straight to court if need be?

Doesn't something similar happen in BC with the cities playing a much more concilliatory role though?
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  #52  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 7:12 PM
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There doesn't have to be a basis for an argument, they just need to come up with the $600 or whatever it is and then a stack of paper to keep the URB busy for a year.

I agree that there is no reasonable argument against the proposal at this point - it's shorter than the nearby Maritime Centre, there are lots of mid-scale buildings surrounding it, the developers have shortened the height in response to criticism (i.e. this is already a compromise with those who will likely appeal it anyway), the current lot is unsightly and in an important, visible area, and the proposal includes money for the badly needed restoration of Keith Hall.
Well there is news out regarding the URB and imposing of cost associated to appeals.

in other words if an appeal is launched they best get it right or the party(ies) could be held for damages.

Of course according to the news release the main people pleading to the government are of course the Heritage Trust individuals.

Wonder how much the appeal of the twisted sisters could have costed the heritage trust if this was in place.
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  #53  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 8:40 PM
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Originally Posted by Jonovision View Post
An article from today Herald. (I'm posting it in both towers respective threads.)
"When you turn down a positive recommendation from staff, you are supposed to quote the applicable sections of the heritage act or the land-use bylaw or the (municipal planning strategy) that apply to that."

Neither of the advisory board reports on the project did that, she said.

"To me, it’s not the fault of the committees. . . . But if you are going to have a developer, in this particular instance, that has to go the 27 rounds we’d say in golf, then (the committees had) better have some concrete understanding of where they’re coming from before they get to . . . council."
This is a really good point. I suspect that these people who get appointed to these committees basically start to believe that they are the czars of whether or not things should be built. It would not surprise me that they do not get a whole lot of direction from above.

Quote:
But Coun. Dawn Sloane (Halifax Downtown) said the developer altered his plan within the last week, adding window and balcony bays to what had been a blank, sheer wall on the Bishop Street side.

"He went back and changed it . . . because I wasn’t willing to even take this to the public."
Does anyone know what she is talking about? What process went on in the last week to cause this? God forbid that developers have to meet Sloanes bizarre ideas of what is acceptable or not in order to get something built in this town. Nobody should have that kind of power.

Quote:
Coun. Patrick Murphy (Halifax North End) wondered whether accompanying multimillion-dollar renovations to Keith Hall, the 1863 mansion built for beer baron and former Halifax mayor Alexander Keith, would include interior as well as exterior building restoration.

While planner Paul Sampson said interior designs were not part of the development agreement, Ms. Sloane explained that original stained glass windows and other architectural features would remain intact.
I watched this part of the debate and was astounded. Murphy, I am rapidly becoming convinced, is just as big a moron as Sloane. Why would a developer gut the interior of such a building if he is trying to sell it as a restoration? Do these kouncil klowns really believe they are smarter than anyone else?

Quote:
Another councillor wondered how the new developments would be handled with the city’s downtown planning project, called HRM By Design, in the works.

Although the city has drafted new rules for downtown development through the project, the area is still governed by the old guidelines until council approves and implements the new plan.

That had Coun. Bob Harvey (Lower Sackville) wondering if any decision on the Halkirk proposal would be superseded by the new guidelines.
Harvey ought to read what is put in front of him or, god forbid, quietly ask a question to staff before he gets up on his hind legs to pontificate. He was advocating this be delayed until after HbD is approved -- whenever that may be. He voted against the development by the way, one of 9 to do so. It amazes me that there are actually 9 people on that kouncil who do not think this should proceed. What the heck do they want there?
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  #54  
Old Posted May 14, 2008, 9:49 PM
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Not sure what Sloane was talking about with the blank wall. Looking at the Bishop Street elevation there is no blank wall, although maybe it was changed.

I get the sense that she parrots back what she hears at urban design and planning talks without really knowing anything about design and without much regard to the "big picture".

As for nine councillors voting against, that's just depressing. I was waiting for some of them to vote against it just to delay it until HbD is complete, just as they thought it was a good idea to enforce development moratoria when the [ongoing] regional planning stuff started maybe 5+ years ago. Of course, this means nothing to Harvey out in Sackville. I wonder how many times he's been past this ugly derelict site during the past five years?

The level of ignorance and stupidity is stunning...
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  #55  
Old Posted May 16, 2008, 11:56 PM
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A public hearing for this development is scheduled for June 17:

June 17, 2008 Halifax Regional Council - 6:00 p.m.

Public Hearing:

Case 00971 - MPS/LUB Amendments and Development Agreement, Halkirk (Keiths Brewery) lands, Lower Water, Bishop and Hollis Street, Halifax.
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  #56  
Old Posted May 17, 2008, 5:09 AM
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Nice. Hopefully I'll be able to make it.
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  #57  
Old Posted May 17, 2008, 2:06 PM
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But Coun. Dawn Sloane (Halifax Downtown) said the developer altered his plan within the last week, adding window and balcony bays to what had been a blank, sheer wall on the Bishop Street side.

"He went back and changed it . . . because I wasn’t willing to even take this to the public."



No one knows what she is talking about. A blank shear wall is what is on the horrible south side of the North American Life Building or what was proposed for the south side of the Midtown proposal. The Alexander has windows on all sides and would be one of the most attractive towers in town. The current site is typical of downtown.......makeshift ugly parking with cheap ugly renovations surrounding it. When will someone with vision lead this town.
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  #58  
Old Posted May 17, 2008, 2:15 PM
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I watched the council session and I think she was referring to that the Hollis Street side was a straight wall going up the tower (with windows on it), but now is curved for balconies and other details. That's what I took away from her statement. That the Holli Street wall is more detailed then it was, not that it was ever going to be blank.
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  #59  
Old Posted Jun 17, 2008, 1:59 PM
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Anybody want to place their bets on the outcome of the public hearing?
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  #60  
Old Posted Jun 17, 2008, 2:56 PM
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Anybody want to place their bets on the outcome of the public hearing?
Approved, 18 for.....

Question is when the appeal comes for HT
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