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  #61  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2014, 9:56 PM
halifaxboyns halifaxboyns is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by counterfactual View Post
Let's get the Centre Plan passed to banish these idiots from the approval process for good.

You have CDAC, which is filled with professional architects and designers, and that's all you need.
Not disagree with your earlier statements; just saying I didn't recognize any of the names as any 'known' (to me) hard line anti-density folk that you might see with HT or other such groups. But then again, I'm way out west and out of the loop to a certain extent so you may know the names better than I.

Agree completely with getting the centre plan passed, but until more resources are given to the Policy Planning section to get it done - we are left with what we have.

Would the Centre Plan completely get rid of the Planning Advisory Committees throughout HRM? I thought there was one or two that were outside of the Centre Plan's area?
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  #62  
Old Posted Jan 29, 2014, 11:52 PM
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The height was not turned down. It was grudgingly accepted, and ANS reported it incorrectly. That is especially amusing given the story being posted here precipitated this somewhat ludicrous copyright kerfuffle.

The actual recommendation was:

Quote:
The Districts 7 & 8 Planning Advisory Committee recommends to Halifax and West
Community Council that:
1) The density of the proposed building is acceptable.
2) The Committee expressed concern for the effects of the proposed building on the
surrounding urban forest and recommends that input from the Urban Forester be
considered by staff.
3) The Committee supports the use of transparent and light-coloured glass on the
exterior of the structure.
4) Visitor parking is important and should be addressed by staff.
5) The wind impact assessment should be taken into consideration by staff.
6) Setbacks should be considered for the single storey commercial building fronting
on Spring Garden Road.
7) The Committee supports commercial uses along Spring Garden Road.
This whole thread of complaints is based on incorrect information.
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  #63  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 12:39 AM
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^Thanks for correcting the information Councillor Mason. It's good to know our elected officials are at least getting the correct information.

As for the actual recommendations I think they are reasonable.
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  #64  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 3:46 AM
counterfactual counterfactual is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
The height was not turned down. It was grudgingly accepted, and ANS reported it incorrectly. That is especially amusing given the story being posted here precipitated this somewhat ludicrous copyright kerfuffle.

The actual recommendation was:

The Districts 7 & 8 Planning Advisory Committee recommends to Halifax and West
Community Council that:
1) The density of the proposed building is acceptable.
2) The Committee expressed concern for the effects of the proposed building on the
surrounding urban forest and recommends that input from the Urban Forester be
considered by staff.
3) The Committee supports the use of transparent and light-coloured glass on the
exterior of the structure.
4) Visitor parking is important and should be addressed by staff.
5) The wind impact assessment should be taken into consideration by staff.
6) Setbacks should be considered for the single storey commercial building fronting
on Spring Garden Road.
7) The Committee supports commercial uses along Spring Garden Road.

This whole thread of complaints is based on incorrect information.
What the...?

These are entirely reasonable recommendations.

Those recommendations and what the ANS reported are like night and day.
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  #65  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 2:08 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
ANS reported it incorrectly. That is especially amusing given the story being posted here precipitated this somewhat ludicrous copyright kerfuffle.
That is hilarious!

Anyways... I'm glad to hear that it is going through, I think it will be a great addition to the area.
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  #66  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 2:40 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
ANS reported it incorrectly. That is especially amusing given the story being posted here precipitated this somewhat ludicrous copyright kerfuffle.

This whole thread of complaints is based on incorrect information.
That's reassuring, and makes more sense--despite what some people have suggested about the makeup of the committee, scanning the names on the committee I see a lot of smart, urban-minded folks.

It's funny that ANS, which is so touchy about their reporting, and so smug about their business model, got it so wrong.
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  #67  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 4:10 PM
IanWatson IanWatson is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
That is especially amusing given the story being posted here precipitated this somewhat ludicrous copyright kerfuffle.
Maybe this explains how they can claim copyright infringement; you can't copyright facts, so make up some fiction!
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  #68  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 6:46 PM
halifaxboyns halifaxboyns is offline
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It generally helps when the facts are present now doesn't it.
So it appears the PAC functions much like an Urban Design Review Panel (like the one we have here in Calgary). Then I do take back my comments about their usefulness - now seeing how they make comments, it is useful. I think it needs to be clear that comments like this ARE helfpul and useful because any planner (myself included) is juggling many files and we may not always see everything. It's almost as if the PAC is the 'sober second thought' or the 'did you consider X, Y, Z...' sort of thing - which is helpful.
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  #69  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 8:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by halifaxboyns View Post
It generally helps when the facts are present now doesn't it.
So it appears the PAC functions much like an Urban Design Review Panel (like the one we have here in Calgary). Then I do take back my comments about their usefulness - now seeing how they make comments, it is useful. I think it needs to be clear that comments like this ARE helfpul and useful because any planner (myself included) is juggling many files and we may not always see everything. It's almost as if the PAC is the 'sober second thought' or the 'did you consider X, Y, Z...' sort of thing - which is helpful.
Let me editorialize, because none of this is actually policy yet.... I agree, this can be really helpful to have some citizens and some industry folks advising the Councillors and staff. This is not a decision making body like DRC, which approves, PAC is an advisory body that makes recommendations to Halifax & West Community Council, and the CC makes the decisions (and sometimes regional council.)

The PAC is useful and will be much more useful when we have a bit of legs under it - it is so new that the questions before it are not being made clear by the staff presentation, and we need to do some development around what the role of the PAC is and more importantly what it is NOT, ie it is easy to start talking about more low level stuff (paint choice) unless you have firm guidance.

The PAC is for me, personally, a play to get a functioning body in place that can transition into being a new DRC for the peninsula when the Centre Plan comes into play. This is what I hope will happen, it is too soon to see if this WILL happen. But the DRC cannot handle its current work load AND then take on the entire urban core in Dartmouth and peninsula, it is already working flat out. So building that capacity now and hopefully transitioning the committee or members of the committee to the Centre Plan site plan approval is a nice medium term play. Again, this is all in my head, but I think it makes sense.
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  #70  
Old Posted Jan 30, 2014, 11:17 PM
halifaxboyns halifaxboyns is offline
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@Waye - your comments make sense, although are you meaning that there would be one DRC for the entire peninsula (thus eliminating the downtown DRC?)? Or are you meaning one for each? If the latter - I don't know if that would work well...it seems like duplication and unnecessary.

Our Planning Commission (which is actually a decision making body on most multi-residential development 60 units and up and subdivisions/outline plans) handles applications throughout the city; so it has lengthy agenda sometimes. During the boom, it wasn't uncommon for an agenda of 20+ items and to run from 1pm to 10pm (with breaks/dinner break). So I think one DRC just for the peninsula can handle the workload.

Agree though, staff (and I count myself in this category) sometimes don't help when we are seeking information. I had never attended our design review panel and went with an application and I really didn't know what I was doing, no one really explained it so after all was done I felt like I had been quite useless. Now I know what I'm getting into, so I'll do better. It all comes with training and experience I guess (and time).
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  #71  
Old Posted Jan 31, 2014, 1:35 AM
counterfactual counterfactual is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
Let me editorialize, because none of this is actually policy yet.... I agree, this can be really helpful to have some citizens and some industry folks advising the Councillors and staff. This is not a decision making body like DRC, which approves, PAC is an advisory body that makes recommendations to Halifax & West Community Council, and the CC makes the decisions (and sometimes regional council.)

The PAC is useful and will be much more useful when we have a bit of legs under it - it is so new that the questions before it are not being made clear by the staff presentation, and we need to do some development around what the role of the PAC is and more importantly what it is NOT, ie it is easy to start talking about more low level stuff (paint choice) unless you have firm guidance.

The PAC is for me, personally, a play to get a functioning body in place that can transition into being a new DRC for the peninsula when the Centre Plan comes into play. This is what I hope will happen, it is too soon to see if this WILL happen. But the DRC cannot handle its current work load AND then take on the entire urban core in Dartmouth and peninsula, it is already working flat out. So building that capacity now and hopefully transitioning the committee or members of the committee to the Centre Plan site plan approval is a nice medium term play. Again, this is all in my head, but I think it makes sense.
I can understand why it's important to get put in place planning committees or commissions to share some of the work, if something like CDAC is required for the Centre Plan.

And I have no problem with PACs making suggestions like this.

However, I would have a big problem if these PACs, so design, would simply become CDACs under a new regime or system. If they did, I wouldn't want them to be constituted anything like these district PACs. Why?

Someone123 puts it better than I ever could:

Quote:
Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
I think part of the problem, in Halifax and in a lot of other places, is that for a while after the 1970's or so these public consultations took on a kind of popularity contest or referendum feel. They are often a de facto debate on whether or not developers should be allowed to build on their property, which is totally out in left field compared to what's useful and reasonable. The meetings should be framed as an opportunity to collaborate with the developer to improve the proposal, and the locals should have input but they should not be considered the final arbiters on whether something gets built or not. They have a huge conflict of interest.
.
Local property owners have the greatest vested interest in the status quo and thus the greatest conflict of interest in these matters.

And so, where local property owners somehow obtain a veto (via say a PAC vote) over new developments, this allows them to preserve their property and value, and usually works against more disadvantaged groups in the city-- people seeking social housing (esp with mixed housing allowances); students; poorer renters; small business, etc.

And, as well, this in turn hinders broader urban goals like densification and sprawl control.

So, yeah, ANS might have reported this one wrong, but there's a reason why we all believed the report-- we've seen this sort of thing over and over again with so many other proposed developments that get shelved due to fantasy problems or NIMBY complaints. It had, as Johnny Cash might say, the ring of truth about it.

For this reason, I'm not ready to let a PAC-like body of random local citizens decide, like CDAC, that a design is approved or not.
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  #72  
Old Posted Jan 31, 2014, 2:24 AM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
Maybe this explains how they can claim copyright infringement; you can't copyright facts, so make up some fiction!
Hahaha!
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  #73  
Old Posted Feb 2, 2014, 1:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by counterfactual View Post
For this reason, I'm not ready to let a PAC-like body of random local citizens decide, like CDAC, that a design is approved or not.
Neither CDAC nor a PAC decides what happens. Council does. So the choice is to have a citizen review committee make a recommendation, or not. I would argue that a well designed PAC or DRC has more actual design knowledge than Council, really, most of us have no planning background.

I don't understand the CDAC hate - they did good work, the regional plan draft now is much better than 2006 and much better than staffs 1st draft.
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  #74  
Old Posted Feb 2, 2014, 8:11 PM
counterfactual counterfactual is offline
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Originally Posted by Waye Mason View Post
Neither CDAC nor a PAC decides what happens. Council does. So the choice is to have a citizen review committee make a recommendation, or not. I would argue that a well designed PAC or DRC has more actual design knowledge than Council, really, most of us have no planning background.

I don't understand the CDAC hate - they did good work, the regional plan draft now is much better than 2006 and much better than staffs 1st draft.
I don't "hate"* CDAC at all! In fact, I think it's done a great job. I view CDAC as much different than these PACs, as it has a lot more design expertise (with legit experts on there), and yes, moreso than Council. More importantly, CDAC fields HRMxD proposals from across the covered HRMxD zone, so members are not necessarily local to the neighbourhood or district for which the proposal is coming. This is in contrast to district based PACs.
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  #75  
Old Posted Mar 26, 2014, 6:15 PM
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In response to the D7&8PAC and public comments Killam Properties has cut this proposal down to 59 M / 18 FL. The revised information is available below;

Case 18270 Details
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  #76  
Old Posted Mar 26, 2014, 6:35 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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I hope they keep it at 18... the time for public input should be over. Is it?
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  #77  
Old Posted Mar 27, 2014, 3:11 PM
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I don't get it. What does losing 2 floors change?!
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  #78  
Old Posted Mar 27, 2014, 3:43 PM
halifaxboyns halifaxboyns is offline
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I don't get it. What does losing 2 floors change?!
It may be in response to some shadowing issues? Just guessing...still 18 is just as good. See the positive.
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  #79  
Old Posted Mar 27, 2014, 5:22 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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It may be in response to some shadowing issues? Just guessing...still 18 is just as good. See the positive.
I'm okay with 18... if it stays 18! The problem with this crap is they cut off 2, and then it is down to a 9-10 story building in the next round of "public" comment. Remember the bayers road tower proposal at 16... the built one was like 8 floors.

2 floors means alot psychologically in Halifax in this case. Its the difference between a 20 story building and one that is less.
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  #80  
Old Posted Apr 24, 2015, 4:13 PM
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The public hearing will be held May 13th, 2015 at Halifax & West Community Council.
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