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  #261  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 6:25 PM
JET JET is offline
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Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
An unremarkable wooden box.
Keith, just curious, could you give an example of a old wooden Halifax building that you find remarkable? Then we can have some idea of what apples are being compared to oranges.
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  #262  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 6:47 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Yeah, I am curious what Keith finds worthwhile, architecturally. Are these worth preserving, in your estimation?



Personally, I wouldn't be nearly as interested in living in Halifax is we didn't have plentiful streets like this.
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  #263  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 7:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Yeah, I am curious what Keith finds worthwhile, architecturally. Are these worth preserving, in your estimation?



Personally, I wouldn't be nearly as interested in living in Halifax is we didn't have plentiful streets like this.
very nice, what street?
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  #264  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 7:23 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Originally Posted by JET View Post
very nice, what street?
Dunno, just found it on some real-estate website when searching for "Halifax north end." The thing is, I bet you anything those houses went through a period at some point in the last half century when they looked more like this or worse.



But they were fixed, and the city is better for it.
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  #265  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 7:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Dunno, just found it on some real-estate website when searching for "Halifax north end." The thing is, I bet you anything those houses went through a period at some point in the last half century when they looked more like this or worse.



But they were fixed, and the city is better for it.
And this is what most of our old building stock looks like. Knock it down. Seriously, it's done.
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  #266  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 8:03 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
And this is what most of our old building stock looks like. Knock it down. Seriously, it's done.
Keith, didn't you see the above example of similar houses, renovated?

That stock isn't "done." That's the Halifax vernacular. That's the kind of housing young people are buying, renovating and re-investing in. That's what nearly all my North End-dwelling friends either own or are aiming to own. That's our equivalent of the Brooklyn rowhouse of the Toronto Victorian.

Sure, they look decrepit—until you put on some new siding, new decorative trim, new paint. Suddenly you've got, well, the first example I posted.
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  #267  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 10:21 PM
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Here is a building Keith would have seriously knocked down before it was renovated as it looked like the example from post #265

Knock er down Joe....................
https://www.google.com/maps/@44.6510...xjwLKID9ig!2e0
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  #268  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 11:15 PM
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Not every old building deserves to get knocked down. But neither does every old building deserve refurbishment. Things were no different then than they are now. Sometimes houses get built and have many interesting details and things included. At other times houses get built for basic shelter for people of not much in the way of means. You have shown both examples above and perhaps inadvertently made my point for me.
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  #269  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by JET View Post
very nice, what street?
I believe that is the one way section of Charles, between Robie & Agricola. The example of more decrepit, albeit colorful houses looks like it's on Buddy Daye.
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  #270  
Old Posted Jul 24, 2014, 11:48 PM
xanaxanax xanaxanax is offline
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I find much of the old north end is turning into houses with vinyl siding and it looks like shite. I really hope those places get demolished for some new development user

vinyl siding anywhere on the peninsula or anywhere in downtown dartmouth should have by-laws against it.
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  #271  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 3:07 AM
counterfactual counterfactual is offline
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Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Dunno, just found it on some real-estate website when searching for "Halifax north end." The thing is, I bet you anything those houses went through a period at some point in the last half century when they looked more like this or worse.



But they were fixed, and the city is better for it.


On the one hand, I get Keith's perspective, old wooden houses-- while interesting historically-- are generally lousy if they are let run down; and they can promote a sense of aimlessness and malaise on a city block.

However, I also agree with Dry, that solution is not to bulldoze old stock housing like this. In fact, I love some of the old, smaller, tightly built, wooden houses in that area in the North End around Cunard, Maynard, Creighton, etc, that area seems almost wholly unique compared to anything in the city.

Rather, if we just get the hell out of the way, and let natural gentrification occur, yes, new families with populate these areas and spend a little more money to rehabilitate some of these sad old stock. That means that, yes, some condos and apartment buildings will be built to help sustain businesses. It'll mean *some* things will be taken down; but not whole blocks or communities. As the community is more sustainable, walkable, improved, more people will want to move there, increasing demand, and these houses will be lived in and renewed as a key part of broader community renewal.

In other words, the solution to our polarized preserve vs demolish debate is actually found, at least in important part, by getting over our other polarized urban debate-- gentrification and Halifax's knee-jerk NIMBY opposition to it. Here's a recent TheCoast debate on point:

http://www.thecoast.ca/halifax/gentr...nt?oid=4375400

The anti-gentrification guy self-describes as a "libertarian communist" which, on its own, shows he doesn't have a clue about either of those political ideologies; but put that idiocy aside-- the opinion he expresses, I think, is a common one in Halifax, particularly among media, journalists, academics, and broader high profile civil society groups.

It's a "cool" or more "hip" perspective, to be sure, but I think gentrification is just a derogatory term for the natural transition any community undergoes, as it builds, grows, shifts, over time.

Kensington market in Toronto, for example, was originally a largely jewish market; today, it is much more diverse. Was it gentrification that caused this? Yes, but in two directions ways-- some families moved out of the area to more upscale neighborhoods (outbound gentrification) whilst other families moved into Kensington (inbound gentrification) changing the constitution of the community. Old families were displaced, new ones arrived. Was the "old" Kensington inherently better? Of course not.

Gentrification is actually more complex and multi-directional than we give it credit for. For some reason, in Halifax we talk about it in a simplistic one-sided way and usually ascribe intrinsic value to a community at some idealistic moment in time. Because there was a documentary about the North End in the 1960s, you see, then the community should never change from that.

Bollocks. Bring on the North End renewal!

PS: Ironically, the anti-gentrification guy sounds like a first rate snob, which is usually what all this comes down to...
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  #272  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 8:29 AM
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Cripes, I spent three hours last night looking for decrepit wooden boxes on the site of 22 Commerce Court. Could it be that another thread has gone wildly off-topic?
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  #273  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 11:47 AM
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Originally Posted by ns_kid View Post
Cripes, I spent three hours last night looking for decrepit wooden boxes on the site of 22 Commerce Court. Could it be that another thread has gone wildly off-topic?
that's not always a bad thing, particularly if it's a good discussion and civilized.
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  #274  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 11:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Empire View Post
Here is a building Keith would have seriously knocked down before it was renovated as it looked like the example from post #265

Knock er down Joe....................
https://www.google.com/maps/@44.6510...xjwLKID9ig!2e0
http://halforbes.com/5677.html this has the before and after of the same building. No need to knock her down, restored by craftsman using old techniques can do miracles. A lot of our old housing stock has very strong bones, and is still standing one to two hundred years later, whereas newer buildings are being torn down after 50 years.
Keith, I don't think you've answered the question: could you give an example of a old wooden Halifax building that you find remarkable?
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  #275  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 12:44 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Originally Posted by counterfactual View Post
The anti-gentrification guy self-describes as a "libertarian communist" which, on its own, shows he doesn't have a clue about either of those political ideologies; but put that idiocy aside-- the opinion he expresses, I think, is a common one in Halifax, particularly among media, journalists, academics, and broader high profile civil society groups.
That guy is like a living parody of the more extreme North End anti-capitalist/collectivist/organizer type.

But I think he's pretty clearly on the losing side—most of the poor people he's ostensibly defending from the forces of gentrification probably roll their eyes at his rhetoric as well. I simply don't understand the idea that because some of a neighbourhood's residents can't afford a $300,000 condo, or to eat at a particular restaurant, that those things should not exist—should not the goal be to uplift the neighbourhood's residents so that those things are within reach, rather than simply keep the area poor?

Anyway, the first guy's opinion (promoting inclusive gentrification) is more obviously the way the neighbourhood is going. We can debate how inclusive it is, but I don't think many of us want to see one of Canada's better urban communities just deteriorate back into a slum.

Wow, we got off topic on this. Interesting discussion though.
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  #276  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 1:01 PM
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Originally Posted by JET View Post
http://halforbes.com/5677.html
Keith, I don't think you've answered the question: could you give an example of a old wooden Halifax building that you find remarkable?
Can't think of too many. Perhaps some of the old large Victorian homes in the south end. Certainly not very many center-city crackerbox row houses.
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  #277  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 3:30 PM
xanaxanax xanaxanax is offline
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This is probably the type of house Keith thinks looks nice

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  #278  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 7:09 PM
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That last post came *that* close to being reported to the mods as a personal attack. You have no idea what my tastes run to in single family homes and that is a total cheap shot. Are you looking to take over from the now-banned RyeJay as the forum troll?
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  #279  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 7:21 PM
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Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
That last post came *that* close to being reported to the mods as a personal attack. You have no idea what my tastes run to in single family homes and that is a total cheap shot. Are you looking to take over from the now-banned RyeJay as the forum troll?
I think we can all agree that those vinyl siding delights found almost everywhere in HRM are generally ugly. I get where Keith is coming from in regards to the generic (essentially the early to mid 1900's) cookie cutter homes in the North End that are run down. Some of our greatest heritage homes are in the South End and I would wager that most of those are safe from demolition.

But back to this actual project............. Council believes work should start next year provided they pass the proposed design and grant approval. Regardless of where we stand on the design, I would say the gain of more good office space and density is a net positive for the DT.
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  #280  
Old Posted Jul 25, 2014, 8:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Dunno, just found it on some real-estate website when searching for "Halifax north end." The thing is, I bet you anything those houses went through a period at some point in the last half century when they looked more like this or worse.



But they were fixed, and the city is better for it.
From an outsider's point of view, when I think of the east coast (especially Halifax or St. John's) I envision the density looking like these homes. When they are redesigned like in the previous picture, they can definitely add value to the street while maintaining an east-coast look.

I really hate to throw in an example from Brooklyn but:



Imagine something like this in East coast colours and trimmings; would it not work to add density (when needed), to gentrify, and to retain your signature east coast style? Just food for thought .
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