HomeDiagramsDatabaseMapsForum
     

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > Canada > Atlantic Provinces > Halifax > Halifax Peninsula & Downtown Dartmouth

Reply

 
Thread Tools Display Modes
     
     
  #161  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 12:37 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,266
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
Utterly ridiculous but unsurprising given our new anti-development council. Zurawski said anything taller than what was already there was "Too TALL!!!!".

I suppose whatever stubby sawed-off structure eventually gets approved for here will require red-brick cladding and faux-Victorian styrofoam cornices.
It's funny that pro-skyscraper folks are all like "council is anti-development," whereas groups like the Willow Tree people are instead "Council is corrupt and in the pocket of big developers!"

Anyway, Zurawkski's height-phobia was a bit ridiculous. I don't know much about the guy be didn't impress yesterday. I did think Lindell Smith was great. He basically said that people asking for the development process to be stopped were barking up the wrong tree.

I do think this is the best outcome. A 29-storey building is absolutely and IMO obviously fitting for this site (I'd be fine with even taller) but the Centre Plan will stipulate 20 storeys max. The current zoning is only 10, so sending this to a public consultation at 20 storeys in anticipation of the new plan seems like the right decision. Otherwise it's like we're granting Centre Plan exemptions before the thing is even in place, and we spiral down the rabbit hole again of uncertainty around the rules and out-of-scale proposals and NIMBY opposition again. i really hope that the Centre Plan ends or at least discourages this combative propose-oppose, propose-oppose dichotomy we've got going on. Once it's in place, maybe developers will keep their proposals within its limits. And maybe NIMBY busybodies will be discouraged from protesting when they have no leg to stand on, as will be the case with The Willow Tree people and their "10-storeys max" talk once the Centre Plan is the law of the land (soon, soon?)

I do think a 20-storey height limit outside of downtown is frankly dumb, and I'm curious as to the rationale behind it, but if it means we can start building and stop bickering, let's go.

Last edited by Drybrain; Mar 22, 2017 at 12:50 PM.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #162  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 1:44 PM
terrynorthend terrynorthend is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post

I do think this is the best outcome. A 29-storey building is absolutely and IMO obviously fitting for this site (I'd be fine with even taller) but the Centre Plan will stipulate 20 storeys max. The current zoning is only 10, so sending this to a public consultation at 20 storeys in anticipation of the new plan seems like the right decision. Otherwise it's like we're granting Centre Plan exemptions before the thing is even in place.
Ah yes, the Centre Plan sets this corner as a 20 story zone, but also allows for density bonusing. Armco has already indicated that they would donate an entire floor to the IWK health centre. That sounds to me like it would qualify for extra density under the Centre Plan.

I wonder what will happen next. Will Armco hold out for the Centre Plan? Go back to the drawing board and max out the corner with a broad 20-floor wall of building? Cut the IWK donated floor?
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #163  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 1:56 PM
fenwick16 fenwick16 is offline
Honored Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Toronto area (ex-Nova Scotian)
Posts: 5,558
I quickly scanned through the Draft Center Plan and it seems that 20 stories will be the limit throughout the urban core of Halifax and Dartmouth - https://static1.squarespace.com/stat...28+%281%29.pdf. Am I correct or did I miss something with my quick glimpse of the draft copy?
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #164  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 2:17 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 983
Quote:
Originally Posted by terrynorthend View Post
...Centre Plan sets this corner as a 20 story zone, but also allows for density bonusing. ...
It was my impression that the 20-storey "limit" is POST bonus.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #165  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 2:18 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,266
Quote:
Originally Posted by terrynorthend View Post
Ah yes, the Centre Plan sets this corner as a 20 story zone, but also allows for density bonusing. Armco has already indicated that they would donate an entire floor to the IWK health centre. That sounds to me like it would qualify for extra density under the Centre Plan.

I wonder what will happen next. Will Armco hold out for the Centre Plan? Go back to the drawing board and max out the corner with a broad 20-floor wall of building? Cut the IWK donated floor?
Will the Centre Plan's density bonusing permit more than 20 storeys? That would be good, obviously, though.

The draft plan talks about bonusing but only hypothetically. Under "Policy Directions" (Page 82-83 it says "buildings heights shall be generally located as per the Centre Profiles." The next policy direction listes is about bonusing, and says "Bonusing programs in the Centres where a bonus height is offered as an incentive for specific public benefits in excess of the minimum development requirements are supported."

Whoever wrote the draft plan might want to learn about active voice and proper use of punctuation, but that suggests to me that bonusing will permit more than 20 storeys?

But, it's vague, so I dunno.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #166  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 2:27 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
we built this city
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,663
20 is the new 30.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #167  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 3:03 PM
Keith P.'s Avatar
Keith P. Keith P. is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 6,004
It's not as if 2 guys sat around a table in a bar 2 weekends ago and sketched this thing out over a couple of beers. This was first developed 3 years ago and has been caught in the bureaucracy all that time. The Centre Plan still has not been officially rolled out so who the heck knows what it will and will not allow? The process as it currently exists is still what needs to be followed and that is what the developer did. Now because some document that isn't finished and approved is looming all that gets thrown out by govt?

It is absurdity like this that sometimes makes me think we could save a lot of money if we just did away with municipal planning altogether and let people build whatever they wanted.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #168  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 3:04 PM
Keith P.'s Avatar
Keith P. Keith P. is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Posts: 6,004
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Anyway, Zurawkski's height-phobia was a bit ridiculous. I don't know much about the guy be didn't impress yesterday.

That's because he is an industrial-strength tool.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #169  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 5:09 PM
terrynorthend terrynorthend is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Will the Centre Plan's density bonusing permit more than 20 storeys? That would be good, obviously, though.

The draft plan talks about bonusing but only hypothetically. Under "Policy Directions" (Page 82-83 it says "buildings heights shall be generally located as per the Centre Profiles." The next policy direction listes is about bonusing, and says "Bonusing programs in the Centres where a bonus height is offered as an incentive for specific public benefits in excess of the minimum development requirements are supported."

Whoever wrote the draft plan might want to learn about active voice and proper use of punctuation, but that suggests to me that bonusing will permit more than 20 storeys?

But, it's vague, so I dunno.
Agreed. I guess I'm not certain either about density bonusing. I suppose even if it does allow for additional height incentive based on public benefits, then someone (council? staff? committee?) would have to decide how much bonus for how much benefit.

So much for the Centre Plan being the silver bullet that clears everything up for developers and stakeholders.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #170  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 5:22 PM
someone123's Avatar
someone123 someone123 is online now
hähnchenbrüstfiletstüc
 
Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 21,488
Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
It's not as if 2 guys sat around a table in a bar 2 weekends ago and sketched this thing out over a couple of beers. This was first developed 3 years ago and has been caught in the bureaucracy all that time. The Centre Plan still has not been officially rolled out so who the heck knows what it will and will not allow? The process as it currently exists is still what needs to be followed and that is what the developer did. Now because some document that isn't finished and approved is looming all that gets thrown out by govt?

It is absurdity like this that sometimes makes me think we could save a lot of money if we just did away with municipal planning altogether and let people build whatever they wanted.
Yeah, it seems unreasonable to evaluate proposals based on rules that may or may not come into effect sometime (maybe years) in the future. What we are talking about here is really selective enforcement of some subset of rules taken from two different plans. There is probably no way for a developer to interpret both plans (MPS and Centre Plan) coherently such that nobody could object based on some rule found in one of the two rulebooks.

The NIMBYs of course must love the confusion of having many sets of rules from which to pick. A system like that is biased against development and any kind of constructive change or progress.

If the city denies a proposal based on future Centre Plan rules, couldn't the developer simply appeal to the NSUARB? The NSUARB would then interpret the MPS. I don't think they would consider the Centre Plan rules.
__________________
flickr
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #171  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 6:49 PM
IanWatson IanWatson is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 805
Quote:
Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
If the city denies a proposal based on future Centre Plan rules, couldn't the developer simply appeal to the NSUARB? The NSUARB would then interpret the MPS. I don't think they would consider the Centre Plan rules.
Not in this case. The developer was asking to change the existing MPS. Council has absolutely zero obligation to do that. What Council did do was say, "okay, we will make changes to the existing MPS, but we're going to make them in the way we think will align with our forthcoming new MPS (Centre Plan)." In other words, they are basically speeding up the adoption of Centre Plan on this site alone. Council could have just said, "tough beans, you're stuck with the existing MPS (10 storeys) until Centre Plan is adopted."

The UARB does not hear MPS amendment appeals because they would not have anything to test them against. The test for a rezoning or development agreement appeal is, "does this meet the intent of the MPS?" If you tried to apply that test to MPS amendments the answer would always be "no", because... well because that's why you're changing the MPS in the first place.

Quote:
Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
The NIMBYs of course must love the confusion of having many sets of rules from which to pick. A system like that is biased against development and any kind of constructive change or progress.
There is only one set of rules to pick from right now: The Halifax MPS. Council, as a result of the developer's request, is currently in the process of amending that one set of rules as they apply to this site; just not exactly the way they developer wanted.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #172  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 7:00 PM
IanWatson IanWatson is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Posts: 805
Quote:
Originally Posted by terrynorthend View Post
Agreed. I guess I'm not certain either about density bonusing. I suppose even if it does allow for additional height incentive based on public benefits, then someone (council? staff? committee?) would have to decide how much bonus for how much benefit.

So much for the Centre Plan being the silver bullet that clears everything up for developers and stakeholders.
If it's implemented the same as downtown Halifax, it will be pretty clear.

The way bonusing works in downtown Halifax:
1) There is a pre-bonus height. You can build to this as-of-right.
2) Most sites also have a post-bonus height. If you want to build this you need to provide a public benefit.
3) The public benefit you can provide comes from a defined list. The list includes things like public art, affordable housing units, undergrounding of wires, etc.
4) How large that public benefit has to be is determined by how many extra square metres of floor area you are getting with the bonus height. There is a dollar value per square metre (can't remember off the top of my head); that's how much public benefit you have to provide.

For example, if I'm getting an extra 1,000 square metres, I multiply that by the dollar value established by the Municipality* (say $100 per square metre). Using these fake numbers that would give $100,000. I would then have to show that I'm providing $100,000 in public benefit, perhaps by installing $100,000 worth of public art.

*This dollar value is the same for all projects; they don't just come up with it on the fly. I just can't remember what the actual number is right now and I'm too lazy to go look it up.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #173  
Old Posted Mar 22, 2017, 9:22 PM
fenwick16 fenwick16 is offline
Honored Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Toronto area (ex-Nova Scotian)
Posts: 5,558
Specifying building height by the number of stories doesn't seem very specific; a 20 storey office building could be 270 - 280 feet tall, whereas a 20 storey residential may only be 180 feet tall. I haven't gone through the draft Centre Plan other than to scan through it in a few minutes, so I wonder if they will eventual set building heights such as 70 meters, or better still 80-90 meters in some areas similar to the Downtown Halifax Land Use By-law?

In any case, if Halifax ever became a boom city like Calgary then there would be pressure to increase the height limits on the by-laws.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #174  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 1:23 AM
terrynorthend terrynorthend is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Posts: 939
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenwick16 View Post
Specifying building height by the number of stories doesn't seem very specific; a 20 storey office building could be 270 - 280 feet tall, whereas a 20 storey residential may only be 180 feet tall. I haven't gone through the draft Centre Plan other than to scan through it in a few minutes, so I wonder if they will eventual set building heights such as 70 meters, or better still 80-90 meters in some areas similar to the Downtown Halifax Land Use By-law?
That's a good point, Fenwick.

I guess it's important to remember the published Centre Plan, as lengthy as it is, is still just a draft document. It's vague at the moment: eg. does a 16-20 story zone mean 16 pre-bonus and 20 post? Also, as you have pondered, will there be a hard coded height (metres) added to the document?
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #175  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 2:20 PM
Ziobrop's Avatar
Ziobrop Ziobrop is offline
armchairitect
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Halifax
Posts: 720
Quote:
Originally Posted by fenwick16 View Post
Specifying building height by the number of stories doesn't seem very specific; a 20 storey office building could be 270 - 280 feet tall, whereas a 20 storey residential may only be 180 feet tall. I haven't gone through the draft Centre Plan other than to scan through it in a few minutes, so I wonder if they will eventual set building heights such as 70 meters, or better still 80-90 meters in some areas similar to the Downtown Halifax Land Use By-law?

In any case, if Halifax ever became a boom city like Calgary then there would be pressure to increase the height limits on the by-laws.
the MPS actually specifies the height in Meters. its a fixed distance. most people talk in stories for convenience sake, but remember in a 20 story building, if you make the floors thinner, (both slab thickness and ceiling height) you can gain an extra 2 floors in the same vertical space.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #176  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 2:43 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 983
Quote:
Originally Posted by terrynorthend View Post
... does a 16-20 story zone mean 16 pre-bonus and 20 post?...
This is how I understand the height precincts to work.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #177  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 7:14 PM
TheGreenBastard's Avatar
TheGreenBastard TheGreenBastard is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Halifax/Toronto
Posts: 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by eastcoastal View Post
This is how I understand the height precincts to work.
Exactly. It was confirmed by Waye Mason on Reddit.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #178  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 7:15 PM
TheGreenBastard's Avatar
TheGreenBastard TheGreenBastard is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2015
Location: Halifax/Toronto
Posts: 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by eastcoastal View Post
This is how I understand the height precincts to work.
An example of this would be The Maple, which is 71 m, and 21 floors, whereas the Alexander is shorter, but has 24 floors.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #179  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 8:01 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 3,266
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheGreenBastard View Post
Exactly. It was confirmed by Waye Mason on Reddit.
Geez, I'm no fiend for height, but that seems really, really conservative. I understand the desire to fill up many under-used sites with smaller buildings rather than fill up just a few with big tall buildings (I've advocated for it myself), but we should also be leaving some obvious redevelopment sites in play for future building booms. Otherwise I fear those booms will take an even bigger chunk of our historic buildings than they already have.

And anyway, c'mon, 16 storeys pre-bonus? The "Halifax has a fear of heights" mantra is starting to sound more plausible.
Reply With Quote
     
     
  #180  
Old Posted Mar 23, 2017, 8:10 PM
fenwick16 fenwick16 is offline
Honored Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Toronto area (ex-Nova Scotian)
Posts: 5,558
I serious wonder if when they say 16 storeys they are thinking of the CIBC tower in downtown Halifax and when they think of 20 storeys they might be thinking of the Bell Aliant tower. These are much taller than residential towers with the similar number of floors.
Reply With Quote
     
     
This discussion thread continues

Use the page links to the lower-right to go to the next page for additional posts
 
 
Reply

Go Back   SkyscraperPage Forum > Regional Sections > Canada > Atlantic Provinces > Halifax > Halifax Peninsula & Downtown Dartmouth
Forum Jump


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 12:00 AM.

     

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.