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  #21  
Old Posted Apr 2, 2014, 9:25 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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[QUOTE=Colin May;6523431]
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Originally Posted by kph06 View Post
Today by me:

HRM thinks 15 storeys oppsite The Avery will be just fine and that is why they changed the viewplanes. Buyers beware !
What are you saying here? There is going to be a 15 story development across the street?

Also... why would that be "buyers beware"... this development is only 5 stories. .. it won't have an amazing view because its so short. (Or what Halifax cooks might call a "mid-rise"... personally 10 stories is mid-rise)
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  #22  
Old Posted Apr 2, 2014, 10:33 PM
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[QUOTE=worldlyhaligonian;6523694]
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What are you saying here? There is going to be a 15 story development across the street?

Also... why would that be "buyers beware"... this development is only 5 stories. .. it won't have an amazing view because its so short. (Or what Halifax cooks might call a "mid-rise"... personally 10 stories is mid-rise)
See this staff report to council July 23 2013 when the viewplanes were changed to suit the fantasists.
Why buy a condo at 'The Avery' and then have a view of three 15 storey towers and live in a wind tunnel ?
Here are the 2 reports :
http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...30723ca093.pdf

http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...esentation.pdf

Property sales in metro are in the dumpster and it is possible The Avery will be a rental, and that market is very well served at the moment.
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  #23  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 8:29 AM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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[QUOTE=Colin May;6523831]
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post

See this staff report to council July 23 2013 when the viewplanes were changed to suit the fantasists.
Why buy a condo at 'The Avery' and then have a view of three 15 storey towers and live in a wind tunnel ?
Here are the 2 reports :
http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...30723ca093.pdf

http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...esentation.pdf

Property sales in metro are in the dumpster and it is possible The Avery will be a rental, and that market is very well served at the moment.
15 stories isn't very tall.

This is SSP, I think you're on the wrong forum. The first s stands for skyscraper.

Viewplanes changed to suit the fantasists? There shouldn't even be viewplanes in Dartmouth.
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  #24  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 8:30 AM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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[QUOTE=Colin May;6523831]
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post

See this staff report to council July 23 2013 when the viewplanes were changed to suit the fantasists.
Why buy a condo at 'The Avery' and then have a view of three 15 storey towers and live in a wind tunnel ?
Here are the 2 reports :
http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...30723ca093.pdf

http://www.halifax.ca/council/agenda...esentation.pdf

Property sales in metro are in the dumpster and it is possible The Avery will be a rental, and that market is very well served at the moment.
The fact that property sales are down shouldn't mean your point of view should influence what private developers build or don't build. That's their freedom.

In fact, it will likely lead to a fall in prices.
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  #25  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 3:44 PM
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[QUOTE=worldlyhaligonian;6524405]
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Originally Posted by Colin May View Post

The fact that property sales are down shouldn't mean your point of view should influence what private developers build or don't build. That's their freedom.

In fact, it will likely lead to a fall in prices.
They are free to risk their money. Fools rush in where wise men fear to tread. Taller buildings in downtown Dartmouth, other than seniors buildings, have a history of failure; the most recent being the condos above Two if by Sea where the developer lost the building before all the units were sold. The other prominent losers were Queens Square, Admiralty Place and the Medical Centre. The latter project almost caused the personal bankruptcy of doctors including Dr Savage and Dr Smith. Jim Spatz bought the building and turned it into Marine Place and filled it with federal government employees.
The most recent project to collapse is the Seagate proposal, the developer spent well over $1,000,000 buying the land, hiring an architect and a planner and then changing his mind, telling a reporter that he was off to Toronto to work on a project.
I would be interested in how many condo/apartment units are under construction in the regional centre and how many have been approved.
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  #26  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 4:38 PM
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[QUOTE=Colin May;6524684]
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post

They are free to risk their money. Fools rush in where wise men fear to tread. Taller buildings in downtown Dartmouth, other than seniors buildings, have a history of failure; the most recent being the condos above Two if by Sea where the developer lost the building before all the units were sold. The other prominent losers were Queens Square, Admiralty Place and the Medical Centre. The latter project almost caused the personal bankruptcy of doctors including Dr Savage and Dr Smith. Jim Spatz bought the building and turned it into Marine Place and filled it with federal government employees.
The most recent project to collapse is the Seagate proposal, the developer spent well over $1,000,000 buying the land, hiring an architect and a planner and then changing his mind, telling a reporter that he was off to Toronto to work on a project.
I would be interested in how many condo/apartment units are under construction in the regional centre and how many have been approved.
Sure, I see what you are saying, but there have also been examples of success too. King's Wharf is a milestone in terms of design and planning.

I detect an anti-height sentiment that isn't fueled by logic. If a developer builds a condo, they can either lower the price of the units or potentially go bust. That's their choice, the city still derives tax income.

I'd rather 15 story buildings in our downtowns than vinyl siding McMansions in the middle of nowhere that cost everyone more in municipal services.

Wind tunnel from a 15 story building... its an area curently exposed to open gusts from the harbour. This type of narrative is exactly what is wrong with some Haligonian's mentality on development. In fact, on the Halifax side, developments have helped shield pedestrians from the direct force of harbour winds. Ever been down by the new farmers market? Those low rise areas and empty space contribute to huge gusts.
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  #27  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 4:49 PM
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The most recent project to collapse is the Seagate proposal, the developer spent well over $1,000,000 buying the land, hiring an architect and a planner and then changing his mind, telling a reporter that he was off to Toronto to work on a project.
A lot of land investors and developers will buy blocks of land, get a development permit and then sell the land at a premium as a "construction ready" pad. This is common practice in other cities and I believe this was the plan for Seagate since the beginning.

It's similar to how companies like Clayton will get a development agreement for a neighbourhood (ie Bedford South) and then sell the multiple-unit sites to a company that specializes in them (ie Kiel Developments) who the build according to the approved plan and once completed sell to a pension fund or other management company.
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  #28  
Old Posted Apr 3, 2014, 5:43 PM
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@worldyhaligonian - walk along Alderney alongside Queens Square on a windy wet day and you will experience the 'wind tunnel' effect. Height requires buyers/tenants and deep pockets. Demand is limited by the metro market. Downtown Dartmouth would be much better served by many 3/4 storey developments, particularly on Portland Street where there are many old properties that should have been bulldozed long ago.

@dmajackson - I don't believe the Seagate developer spent all that money in the hope he could sell the lot and make money. He paid $1.66 million for the land and the taxes this year will be $21,000. In addition he has the opportunity cost of tying up his money in an investment that has generated no return. He is/was up against too much competition and spent over 3 years on the project. King's Wharf is a 10-15 year project, the WDC has dreams of building several hundred units in Dartmouth Cove and another dream of a large development of townhouses and a 20 storey building on the empty lot opposite King's Wharf. The latter block was expropriated by Dartmouth council 36 years ago on March 31 1978 - the last day federal funding was available on municipal development. The expropriation led to PANS mounting a legal challenge based on the council making the decision in an in camera meeting. The case is frequently cited in municipal law. The first development on the expropriated property was Admiralty Place and the out of province developer went bust. The next development on the expropriated land was the Cheltonham townhouses at King & Alderney Drive, and that was several years after the 1995 HRM amalgamation. Interest in the WDC block has been poor, several developers looked at it but couldn't see any economic sense in a project.
King's Wharf is interesting and I'll be posting details about the project on that thread.

Last edited by Colin May; Apr 4, 2014 at 2:01 AM.
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  #29  
Old Posted Apr 5, 2014, 10:08 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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Originally Posted by Colin May View Post
@worldyhaligonian - walk along Alderney alongside Queens Square on a windy wet day and you will experience the 'wind tunnel' effect. Height requires buyers/tenants and deep pockets. Demand is limited by the metro market. Downtown Dartmouth would be much better served by many 3/4 storey developments, particularly on Portland Street where there are many old properties that should have been bulldozed long ago.
Ok, so go stand in direct seabreeze after 12 noon anywhere without protection of buildings. It will be the same experience. Its actually a cycle and no matter where you are, if there is significant difference in land/water temperature it will hit you. Wind tunnelling is not any more significant due to building height than trees.

Seriously, this narrative is complete hyperbole. I grew up sailing in the harbour and the arm. If you think the wind tunnel is much worse than areas receiving direct gusts, then choose to believe that, but its not really that true.

Do you want to cut down all the trees on the arm? How about demolish Dingle tower.

I don't think any downtown market is better served by 3/4 story developments unless they are urban infill of significant quality, otherwise we are sacrificing density. Don't use the wind/shadow argument, that's just nonsense.
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  #30  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2014, 12:44 AM
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Living in downtown Dartmouth it is obvious that more density is needed. If we had more people over here, more services would open up and the overall prosperity of the area would increase.

There is no reason why Portland St. should be in the state it is in. While low rises like the Avery will help the situation, we need to get over this ridiculous obsession of views from everywhere (NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE VIEW FROM THE DARTMOUTH COMMONS).

Density and development creates a more positive vibe in the city overall as well. I can guarantee that the attitudes in Halifax are much more optimistic than they were ten years ago.
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  #31  
Old Posted Apr 6, 2014, 8:56 AM
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Living in downtown Dartmouth it is obvious that more density is needed. If we had more people over here, more services would open up and the overall prosperity of the area would increase.

There is no reason why Portland St. should be in the state it is in. While low rises like the Avery will help the situation, we need to get over this ridiculous obsession of views from everywhere (NO ONE CARES ABOUT THE VIEW FROM THE DARTMOUTH COMMONS).

Density and development creates a more positive vibe in the city overall as well. I can guarantee that the attitudes in Halifax are much more optimistic than they were ten years ago.
Or the view from that golf course... which is privately owned.

Citadel hill is the only place there should be viewplanes... and that is pushing it.

Its funny how the arguments are never coherent and just shift... views, windtunnels, shadows, there will be no parking... the traffic will increase ... the market can't sustain these monster 10 story buildings (as if there aren't any this tall already), there will be increased crime, think of the children!

End result: some people just don't like tall buildings. Doesn't mean there is any real justification behind it.
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  #32  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 12:51 AM
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post
Or the view from that golf course... which is privately owned.

Citadel hill is the only place there should be viewplanes... and that is pushing it.

Its funny how the arguments are never coherent and just shift... views, windtunnels, shadows, there will be no parking... the traffic will increase ... the market can't sustain these monster 10 story buildings (as if there aren't any this tall already), there will be increased crime, think of the children!

End result: some people just don't like tall buildings. Doesn't mean there is any real justification behind it.
Do you have a coherent economic argument for improving downtown Dartmouth over the next 7-10 years ?
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  #33  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 1:50 AM
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Density and development creates a more positive vibe in the city overall as well. I can guarantee that the attitudes in Halifax are much more optimistic than they were ten years ago.
I think HRM by Design style rules for Dartmouth (Centre Plan) would help a lot.

I haven't been back for a while but I was also under the impression that downtown Dartmouth is doing better now than it was 5 or 10 years ago. It's seen quite a bit of residential development recently. King's Wharf is the most high profile example but there are a lot of little apartment and condo buildings. Ochterloney Street alone has seen a handful of those projects.

To be honest, I don't get all of the ranting and doom and gloom stuff posted on this forum. There are great projects happening and I appreciate the regular updates we get here.
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  #34  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 11:48 AM
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Do you have a coherent economic argument for improving downtown Dartmouth over the next 7-10 years ?
Yes: Don't mandate 3-4 story developments when private interests are willing to build taller and create density that can actually support pedestrian accessed businesses.

i.e. King's Wharf.

That's not costing you anything. Your alarmist views don't take into account the many people looking to buy and are slightly priced out at the current market prices.

If we all chose to believe your view, downtown Halifax or Downtown Dartmouth would have even less density and businesses would be even worse off.

Does that answer your question? The view you have of "fantatists" is counter to every economically prosperous city I have lived in. Even in small European cities there are many "hi-rise" housing developments.
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  #35  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 12:40 PM
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To be honest, I don't get all of the ranting and doom and gloom stuff posted on this forum. There are great projects happening and I appreciate the regular updates we get here.
I'm starting to think doom and gloom is a local cultural quirk in Halifax; the assumption is always that everything is going to hell unless otherwise demonstrated. It infects everything--last week, the Herald ran a story about two restaurants closing, including Red Fox on Bayers Road, which is 40 years old. The whole tone of the story was that these are the "latest" closures--the story doesn't explicitly tie them into a wave of restaurant closings (because there isn't one) but it implied as much.

Any time there's a chance to reinforce the dominant "times are tough, we're in decline" narrative, Haligonians--especially the media--take it, even when there's no real evidence for it. It's a really exhausting and self-defeating civic trait.

Maybe I'm just sensitive to it, though, since I'm fairly new here and I'm originally from Calgary, which is the irrational, hyperbolic boosterism capital of the country, by far.

Anyway, if you haven't been back to Dartmouth in a while, my sense is that it's a slow uptake, but it's on a clear upward trajectory--new shops opening catering to a younger demographic, new residential, etc. Portland Street is bursting with potential that's just starting to be realized.

I've always compared it to the Junction in Toronto, a neighbourhood that was considered "up and coming" for years, and improved very slowly, probably because it was so inconvenient to get to via transit. The Junction has been getting better, year by year, for over a decade, but really just turned the corner in a major way in the past couple of years. I think being on the other side of the harbour has made Dartmouth's gentrification inevitably a bit slow than the North End's. But it'll turn a similar corner within the next few years.
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  #36  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 5:08 PM
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I think HRM by Design style rules for Dartmouth (Centre Plan) would help a lot.

I haven't been back for a while but I was also under the impression that downtown Dartmouth is doing better now than it was 5 or 10 years ago. It's seen quite a bit of residential development recently. King's Wharf is the most high profile example but there are a lot of little apartment and condo buildings. Ochterloney Street alone has seen a handful of those projects.

To be honest, I don't get all of the ranting and doom and gloom stuff posted on this forum. There are great projects happening and I appreciate the regular updates we get here.
Ochterloney Street has one proposal approved, nothing else happening in downtown. The only other projext is The Avery. Possibly a proposal for the western corner of Ochterloney and Irishtown if the new owners decide a development will make economic sense.

In the single family residential areas properties are in high demand from the 30+ demographic and sell at asking price within 1-7 days.
The new rental apartments on Portland Street near 5 corners are not yet full after 2 years on the market.
Not sure what impact King's Wharf is having on the downtown as it is a 10+ year project which may deter other developers who don't have deep pockets. The slums at Victoria and Portland are now MT and the owner has 1 other property in the downtown. He is in hock to the owner of the property where the condos are proposed at Victoria and Ochterloney.
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  #37  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 5:51 PM
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In the single family residential areas properties are in high demand from the 30+ demographic and sell at asking price within 1-7 days.
The new rental apartments on Portland Street near 5 corners are not yet full after 2 years on the market.
Maybe the slower growth of the condo market in Dartmouth is due both to what I suggested earlier, and what you're implying here:

Dartmouth is revitalizing more slowly than the peninsula, due to the physical discontinuity between the area and Halifax created by the harbour.

Plus, houses are still reasonably inexpensive in central Dartmouth. People are willing to jump the harbour for a house, but if they're buying condos, they'd rather just pay a small price premium stay in Halifax.
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  #38  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 6:16 PM
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Downtown Dartmouth is a pretty small area. What would a "healthy" amount of construction be? I feel like 3-4 projects happening at once is pretty good, particularly when one of them is King's Wharf.
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  #39  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 8:15 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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Downtown Dartmouth is a pretty small area. What would a "healthy" amount of construction be? I feel like 3-4 projects happening at once is pretty good, particularly when one of them is King's Wharf.
Exactly... and if some of the few projects aren't selling well, its not an argument to build short buildings, it means developers would be smart to wait until demand increases and build taller.

I'm not against infill where appropriate, I just don't get the argument against height when its seems largely unfounded.
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  #40  
Old Posted Apr 7, 2014, 8:33 PM
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Originally Posted by worldlyhaligonian View Post
Exactly... and if some of the few projects aren't selling well, its not an argument to build short buildings, it means developers would be smart to wait until demand increases and build taller.

I'm not against infill where appropriate, I just don't get the argument against height when its seems largely unfounded.
The second building at King's Wharf, The Anchorage, had very poor sales.
The developer has a very nice 2 page inside cover colour spread in a local magazine and shows the Keelson as 100% sold, the Anchorage as 85% occupied and the Aqua Vista as 80%sold. Notice the difference in the wording.
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