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Old Posted Sep 14, 2019, 3:58 AM
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[Halifax] 7177 Quinpool Road | ? m | 32 fl | U/C

"Peninsula Shoreline of the Northwest Arm

Although outside the geographic area covered by the Council motion, staff also note that a large lot located west of the Armdale Roundabout at 7177 Quinpool Road is partially zoned R-3 and partially zoned C-2 under the Halifax Peninsula Land Use By-Law (LUB). At the date of drafting this report, construction permits have been issued for a 32-storey multi-unit residential building under the existing zoning and as-of-right permitting process. This tall building is allowable because, unlike the Mainland LUB, the Peninsula R-3 Zone has no specific height limit and instead relies on vertical angle controls and density limits. The vertical angle controls, in turn, allow taller intrusions based on additional, horizontal angle controls. As a result, a tall, narrow building on a large lot can be oriented in such a way that its height is limited only by economic viability of the development and the density limits in place."

https://www.halifax.ca/sites/default...19hwcc1311.pdf

The development permit for the site was issued in January and is for $20 million and 77 residential units.
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Old Posted Sep 16, 2019, 12:00 PM
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Seems like a little bit of a play on the developer's part. With only 2.4 units per floor I can't see how the floor plates would make any economical sense.
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:31 AM
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Land clearing appears to have started on this site.
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 2:44 PM
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Are there any drawings available for this?
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Old Posted Sep 30, 2019, 3:20 PM
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Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
Seems like a little bit of a play on the developer's part. With only 2.4 units per floor I can't see how the floor plates would make any economical sense.
How does this work for the developer? Begin construction of a 32 floor building with limit and use that to apply pressure to the city to approve a shorter but wider building?
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Old Posted Oct 1, 2019, 12:21 PM
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How does this work for the developer? Begin construction of a 32 floor building with limit and use that to apply pressure to the city to approve a shorter but wider building?
Yes, that definitely happens. It's certainly easier to come to Council with a proposal for a building if you already have equivalent density approved but in a different form. "We won't be adding any additional traffic or strain on services beyond what will already happen, we just want to make the best building possible."

Additional approvals can also be used to for financial purposes. The approved density can be used as collateral to finance other projects.

Not to say that there's anything wrong with doing either of those things. If you have rights under planning rules, why not use them? And it's not like it's free to get a permit.

I have no idea if anything of the sort is happening here. Maybe there's a market for penthouse-style units on every floor. Certainly this would be a nice location to be on the 30th floor, looking down the Arm.
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Old Posted Oct 1, 2019, 3:25 PM
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Yes, it'll be interesting to see what happens. If they do end up building a narrow 32 storey building that could be interesting.

I am not sure what the construction costs are like in these different scenarios, but the developers seem to prefer squat 15-20 storey buildings (or maybe that's what the planning rules encourage). If there are few units per floor then that might allow them to get away with fewer elevators.
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Old Posted Oct 1, 2019, 3:54 PM
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Yes, it'll be interesting to see what happens. If they do end up building a narrow 32 storey building that could be interesting.

I am not sure what the construction costs are like in these different scenarios, but the developers seem to prefer squat 15-20 storey buildings (or maybe that's what the planning rules encourage). If there are few units per floor then that might allow them to get away with fewer elevators.
I don't know the economics or construction issues either, but I note that in NYC right now there seems to be a trend of building very tall, very skinny "pencil" towers. Of course NYC property values and development rules are the main drivers of that.

https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2...rks-super-rich
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Old Posted Oct 1, 2019, 7:37 PM
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Maybe there's a market for penthouse-style units on every floor. Certainly this would be a nice location to be on the 30th floor, looking down the Arm.
I think the original proposal was a 17 story tower (if you Google the address you can find the WM Fares renders and I think they

That view + great neighborhood + proximity to shopping... it wouldn't be crazy to assume the upper floors would be all in the million range.
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Old Posted Oct 2, 2019, 4:36 PM
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I don't know the economics or construction issues either, but I note that in NYC right now there seems to be a trend of building very tall, very skinny "pencil" towers. Of course NYC property values and development rules are the main drivers of that.
In NYC the land costs are much more important than construction costs. It is the same in downtown Vancouver, where a medium-sized condo lot for 500 units in a prime location might cost $200M. Some of these condos can be priced in the tens of millions of dollars, while even shoeboxes in these developments can be $1M.

Cities like New York infamously have a lot of "investment" developments that are designed mostly as a store of value and not as a place to live. They are almost like pieces of artwork. I think they do need to be opulent places to live too but if they are built in a strange way that looks cool and costs more that is completely acceptable and might make them even more desirable.

In Halifax I think the biggest issue would be that a less practical and more expensive design would have to be weighed against building more space or adding better finishings. Are there buyers who will pay, say, $1.5M for a 2,000 square foot unit on its own floor instead of a 2,500 square foot unit on a much larger floor with other units? Or maybe people who really really like the idea of a high end 30th floor unit on the Northwest Arm?

If a building like this in Halifax is going to happen, I think this is one of the locations where it is most likely. There are a lot of expensive properties around the Northwest Arm but highrise condos in that area are in short supply.
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Old Posted Oct 23, 2019, 12:42 AM
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There is definitely prep work going on at this site;


Halifax Developments Blog (Photo by David Jackson)
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Old Posted Nov 23, 2019, 9:55 PM
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Looked at the plans for this the other day...

... and a couple of things are mysteries to me and you may be able to help. It appears that most of the dwelling units will be bachelor units (58) with a few 1BR (13) and fewer 2BR (6). The odd thing is the size of the units.
The Bachelors are between 900 and 1000 sq. ft each. Those appear to be pretty big Bachelors. Anybody know how they could be that big and still not push the calculated population density of the building up? It's not a big property, right?
Similarly, the 1BRs are over 1500 sq. ft. and the 2BRs are over 4000sq. ft.
Interested to hear what you may think.
Thanks.
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Old Posted Nov 23, 2019, 10:01 PM
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... and a couple of things are mysteries to me and you may be able to help. It appears that most of the dwelling units will be bachelor units (58) with a few 1BR (13) and fewer 2BR (6). The odd thing is the size of the units.
The Bachelors are between 900 and 1000 sq. ft each. Those appear to be pretty big Bachelors. Anybody know how they could be that big and still not push the calculated population density of the building up? It's not a big property, right?
Similarly, the 1BRs are over 1500 sq. ft. and the 2BRs are over 4000sq. ft.
Interested to hear what you may think.
Thanks.
That's... incredibly strange? The second tallest building in Halifax in a mostly working professional area I'd assume would want 2/3 bedroom units for the most part. It's an interesting area, I'd imagine the view would be beautiful from the top.
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Old Posted Nov 25, 2019, 2:49 PM
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What about the C-2 zoned portion?

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Originally Posted by Dmajackson View Post
"Peninsula Shoreline of the Northwest Arm

Although outside the geographic area covered by the Council motion, staff also note that a large lot located west of the Armdale Roundabout at 7177 Quinpool Road is partially zoned R-3 and partially zoned C-2 under the Halifax Peninsula Land Use By-Law (LUB). At the date of drafting this report, construction permits have been issued for a 32-storey multi-unit residential building under the existing zoning and as-of-right permitting process. This tall building is allowable because, unlike the Mainland LUB, the Peninsula R-3 Zone has no specific height limit and instead relies on vertical angle controls and density limits. The vertical angle controls, in turn, allow taller intrusions based on additional, horizontal angle controls. As a result, a tall, narrow building on a large lot can be oriented in such a way that its height is limited only by economic viability of the development and the density limits in place."

https://www.halifax.ca/sites/default...19hwcc1311.pdf

The development permit for the site was issued in January and is for $20 million and 77 residential units.
Yes, the R-3 angle controls allow for considerable height, but because this property is +/- half zoned C-2, does not section 58 of the Peninsula LUB come into play? It's pretty direct stating: "58 The height of a building in a C-2 Zone shall not exceed a height of eighty (80) feet, but for each foot that the building or that portion of the building which would exceed eighty (80) feet in height is set back from the property line, two (2) feet may be added to the height of the building." Not sure what those setbacks would allow for maximum height but there appears to be a maximum height on about half of the site. Correct?
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Old Posted Nov 25, 2019, 3:15 PM
IanWatson IanWatson is offline
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Originally Posted by wdc View Post
... and a couple of things are mysteries to me and you may be able to help. It appears that most of the dwelling units will be bachelor units (58) with a few 1BR (13) and fewer 2BR (6). The odd thing is the size of the units.
The Bachelors are between 900 and 1000 sq. ft each. Those appear to be pretty big Bachelors. Anybody know how they could be that big and still not push the calculated population density of the building up? It's not a big property, right?
Similarly, the 1BRs are over 1500 sq. ft. and the 2BRs are over 4000sq. ft.
Interested to hear what you may think.
Thanks.
Their permitted population density is capped at 92 people (calculated at 1 person per bedroom). So they're slightly under that with that room arrangement. Additionally, open space requirements are 50% higher for 2 brdms, so they may be running into trouble accommodating it on the site.

All that being said, a 1,000 SF bachelor is insane considering "bachelor unit" is defined as, "a dwelling unit in a multiple dwelling building, consisting of not more than one habitable room together with kitchen or kitchenette and sanitary facilities." So you just gonna have a 750 SF open room???

It's quite clear they've thrown together a design/unit layout that meets current rules to get their permit, and will likely switch it up once Centre Plan is in effect.
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Old Posted Nov 25, 2019, 4:38 PM
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Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
All that being said, a 1,000 SF bachelor is insane considering "bachelor unit" is defined as, "a dwelling unit in a multiple dwelling building, consisting of not more than one habitable room together with kitchen or kitchenette and sanitary facilities." So you just gonna have a 750 SF open room???
So I guess you could have a bedroom, whatever bathrooms you want, and a "kitchen" with dining area in addition to the large common room (which maybe could have a den-like "nook" that still doesn't count as a bedroom but could be used as an office or guest sleeping area). This is actually a pretty good and common layout, although most people with 1,000 SF+ would rather have 2 proper bedrooms.

I wish the main area in my condo were more open than it is.
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Old Posted Nov 29, 2019, 1:49 PM
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So I guess you could have a bedroom, whatever bathrooms you want, and a "kitchen" with dining area in addition to the large common room (which maybe could have a den-like "nook" that still doesn't count as a bedroom but could be used as an office or guest sleeping area). This is actually a pretty good and common layout, although most people with 1,000 SF+ would rather have 2 proper bedrooms.

I wish the main area in my condo were more open than it is.
I've been on the apartment hunt and it's unfortunate that there's so few good options for studios. A few room dividers and you've got a nice airy loft with great views. If anything at least it will add some variety to the market.
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