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  #81  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2013, 5:22 AM
fenwick16 fenwick16 is offline
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
An open house is going to be held on May 8 for this development (exact details might be on the HRM website somewhere).

The plan is to begin construction this summer.
This is great news. Here is an excerpt from an April 29th, 2013 Chronicle Herald story - http://thechronicleherald.ca/busines...lly-see-action

Quote:
NFB site could finally see action
April 29, 2013 - 6:24pm COLLEEN COSGROVE BUSINESS REPORTER

Five-storey, $4-million development proposed


A rendering of the proposed transformation of the NFB building on Barrington Street in Halifax.

The third time could be the charm for the long-awaited redevelopment of the National Film Board building in downtown Halifax.

On the heels of two redevelopment plans dashed by previous owners, architect David Garrett and new owner Steve Caryi of Ruby LLP are closer to moving forward on a $4-million plan to transform the heritage site into a five-storey, mixed-use property.

The public will have a chance to review the comprehensive redevelopment plan at an open house on May 8 at 5 p.m. at the Keystone Business Centre in Freemasons’ Hall at 1533 Barrington St.

Garrett, owner of David F. Garrett Architects of Halifax has worked extensively on Barrington Street. His work includes the redevelopment of Freemasons’ Hall, the redevelopment of the Sam the Record Man building at 1656 Barrington St., and 1715 Barrington St., historically known as the G.M. Smith Building. Garrett also designed Starfish Properties’ Barrington Espace redevelopment.
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  #82  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2013, 6:02 AM
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One sad point made in that article is that they say they can't rebuild the original tower on this building because it would violate viewplane rules. This is an example where the viewplanes are arguably making new buildings worse.

I completely agree with the "albatross" comment. This building has become a kind of poster child for problems on the street. Once it's redeveloped the whole area will look better.

I'm hoping the Green Lantern/Keith Hall will be restored soon too but I haven't heard any news about it in a long time. The central stretch of Barrington only needs a half dozen or so small to medium sized projects to give it a great "main street" feel. This sort of potential is one of the things I like about Halifax, but it can also be frustrating to see how long these simple improvements take. It does seem like the downtown area is gaining steam though.
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  #83  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2013, 2:43 PM
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It's not too late for someone to hijack a Cat D-8 and knock this thing down in the middle of the night.

What a disaster - facade-ism at its worst.
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  #84  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2013, 3:08 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Does anyone have a pic of what the spire used to look like? I can't really find any old shots of the building, pre-fire.

EDIT: Nevermind. Found one. More substantial than I thought. The city should provide an exemption for this given the circumstances (reconstruction of a previously existing structure).

Last edited by Drybrain; Apr 30, 2013 at 3:23 PM.
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  #85  
Old Posted Apr 30, 2013, 3:28 PM
halifaxboyns halifaxboyns is offline
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Good to see something finally going forward with this site. It's a shame the viewplane rules don't have some sort of 'out clause' for ancillary structures to allow the spire to be rebuilt though. We added a similar clause in our building height regulations a couple years ago, mainly due to churches and the crosses they tended to put on top of the roof structure. They always ended up requiring variances to height!
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  #86  
Old Posted May 1, 2013, 12:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
Does anyone have a pic of what the spire used to look like? I can't really find any old shots of the building, pre-fire.

EDIT: Nevermind. Found one. More substantial than I thought. The city should provide an exemption for this given the circumstances (reconstruction of a previously existing structure).
More than giving an exemption I think the developers should be shoving this in Pacey's nose and using it to make the point of the stupidity of current 100% rigid apparently never to be violated viewplane rules. I for one would LOVE to hear Pacey defend not being able to restore a historical feature because of his precious viewplane.
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  #87  
Old Posted May 1, 2013, 10:49 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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More than giving an exemption I think the developers should be shoving this in Pacey's nose and using it to make the point of the stupidity of current 100% rigid apparently never to be violated viewplane rules. I for one would LOVE to hear Pacey defend not being able to restore a historical feature because of his precious viewplane.
Well clearly it will create traffic issues, shadow impacts, and also the impact on children. Quite frankly, its too tall. We should not allow any development in the downtown above 2 stories. This is reflective of historic building heights.
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  #88  
Old Posted May 1, 2013, 11:47 PM
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post
Well clearly it will create traffic issues, shadow impacts, and also the impact on children. Quite frankly, its too tall. We should not allow any development in the downtown above 2 stories. This is reflective of historic building heights.
Quite so. Quoting the always wise Coun. Watts, such inordinately tall buildings "are not of human scale".
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  #89  
Old Posted May 2, 2013, 5:53 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Wow... you guys aren't bitter or anything!

Seriously, if ever there was an opportunity to challenge the heritage vs viewplane regulation, this would be the one to do it with.
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  #90  
Old Posted May 2, 2013, 6:01 PM
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Seriously, if ever there was an opportunity to challenge the heritage vs viewplane regulation, this would be the one to do it with.
Actually I think it would be better for the street for the developer to quietly build the thing without the upper portion now instead of waiting a couple of years for an uncertain outcome that could derail the whole project.

The current facade reminds me of post-bombing pictures of Europe. It contributes greatly to the negative reputation of the street, and it's the kind of thing that gives visitors an instant impression of the sort of neighbourhood they're in.
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  #91  
Old Posted May 2, 2013, 10:57 PM
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The development should not be allowed to proceed unless the spire is reconstructed. A 50% tax break for 5 years shall be awarded for this reconstruction effort.
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  #92  
Old Posted May 2, 2013, 11:03 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
Actually I think it would be better for the street for the developer to quietly build the thing without the upper portion now instead of waiting a couple of years for an uncertain outcome that could derail the whole project.

The current facade reminds me of post-bombing pictures of Europe. It contributes greatly to the negative reputation of the street, and it's the kind of thing that gives visitors an instant impression of the sort of neighbourhood they're in.
You are correct, it would be counterproductive to hold up construction based on this, but it would still be a prime argument (even if made post-construction) for changes from the current situation.
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  #93  
Old Posted May 2, 2013, 11:26 PM
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I would LOVE to see the spire done too (it would certainly grand things up quite a bit) but I kind of agree with Someone...it's not a dealbreaker. It's been like, 20 years? If the plan is to start work this summer, I don't wanna see it held up, especially since the architect retained on it has such a good track record with restorations. Better have the bulk of the facade restored properly than have it lie fallow again, deteriorate for a few more years, and then maybe have some inferior architect go to work on it. (Maybe the spire can be constructed down the road; who knows.)
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  #94  
Old Posted May 3, 2013, 2:57 AM
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The spire height and massing should be able to be grandfathered given the historical signifance. This is a case where a proper heritage fund could assist with legalities and construction costs in an effort to add the spire without delaying the project.
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  #95  
Old Posted May 3, 2013, 11:04 AM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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Have they substituted a diving board for the historically-accurate-but-somehow-inappropriate-for-a-heritage-context-that-generates-height-restrictions "spire"?
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  #96  
Old Posted May 3, 2013, 1:18 PM
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The problem with rebuilding the spire is who pays to do it? The space would be too small to be useful for anything so for the developer it would just be cash out with no return and increased ongoing maintenance. If you made it bigger, by say extending it back, to make useful space, then the point of restoring the grand look is lost. Maybe HRM could invest to do it, but that money comes from somewhere and, from a hertiage perspective, could probably be better used elsewhere. The building isn't on a prominent corner with dramatic lines of sight. Bringing the spire back is a nice idea, but it doesn't seem very practical. I think the current plan is a good compromise with what was and with current realities.
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  #97  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2013, 3:43 AM
BravoZulu BravoZulu is offline
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Quote:
NFB site changes sought

June 7, 2013 - 7:21pm REMO ZACCAGNA Business Reporter
Chronicle Herald

The people behind the proposed redevelopment of the National Film Board building plan to ask for two variances that would allow the project to go ahead.

A preliminary presentation prepared by David F. Garrett Architects for the municipal design review committee, which will meet on Thursday, outlines in more detail property owner Steve Caryi’s vision for the project
more info at link http://thechronicleherald.ca/busines...changes-sought
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  #98  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2013, 7:11 AM
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Here is the presentation to the Design Review Committee for the NFB LOFTS.

http://www.halifax.ca/boardscom/drc/...1drc130613.PDF

Excerpt from the report linked to above;

"General Description:

The project consists generally of a partial service basement including bicycle storage, a commercial main level, four upper levels of two three-bedroom units and two studio units on each floor, and rooftop tenant open space. Two light wells bring natural light to windows in side and rear units. All uses within the building are in accordance with permitted uses outlined in the I-LRM Downtown Plan. Barrier-free access to the residential levels will be provided by a ramped entry on the north side.

The building is largely prescribed by the existing front façade, saved from demolition by the then City ofHalifax in the mid-i 990’s in consideration ofits
heritage value to the streetscape following a devastating fire to the original building. The front façade is protected both by heritage designation and a municipal easement. The existing façade masonry will receive a partial
restoration and windows and doors will be replaced (see
Heritage Impact Statement). A new addition will be built on top of and behind the existing façade and, of necessity, connected to it.

The height of the building is limited by View Plane #6 and by snow loading requirements on the adjacent existing buildings. The proposed building will be approximately the same height as the original building, which will be one level above the height of the existing façade. A future rooftop addition is allowed for in the design of the structural system, but is not part of this submittal."
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  #99  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2013, 2:12 PM
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Interesting to note that in that report they are allowing for a future rooftop addition within the structure of the new building. Something that could be added at a later date.
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  #100  
Old Posted Jun 8, 2013, 6:08 PM
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Last edited by someone123; Jun 8, 2013 at 10:27 PM.
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