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Old Posted Oct 20, 2007, 9:00 PM
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Smile United Gulf towers | ~90m | 27 fl | Approved

The United Gulf proposal for 1591 Granville Street and an adjacent property has been approved by both the city council (about a year ago), and also by the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board during an appeal by the Heritage Trust that wrapped up this month. So let's celebrate!

The towers will be built on the site of the old Texpark, a municipal parkade that was demolished a few years ago. A smaller, rather ugly building currently housing a law office and other businesses will also be demolished.

The towers are being designed by Hariri Pontarini Architects of Toronto, and will cost C$140-150 million. One of the towers will be used as a hotel, while the other will contain around 250 condos housing about 500 people. The 4-storey podium will contain a conference centre, offices, and ground-level retail. Parking will be located underground (the site is also located next to the newish MetroPark facility). Streetscape improvements are also included in the development. When completed, the buildings will be tied for third tallest in the city.

Now that the appeal is out of the way, the design will be completed, and construction should begin within the next couple years. I can't wait to see these beautiful buildings constructed and benefiting the Barrington Street area through good design & increased population density. The lot is pretty ugly, at the moment.

















Photo credits: United Gulf Developments

Last edited by alps; Oct 20, 2007 at 9:25 PM.
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  #2  
Old Posted Oct 20, 2007, 9:01 PM
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Nice!

...and I was about to suggest to you guys to put up some threads on active projects in your region
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  #3  
Old Posted Oct 20, 2007, 9:02 PM
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Blah, you beat me to it! Mike can you remove mine!
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Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 5:12 AM
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Yesss!
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  #5  
Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 7:52 PM
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Apparently this is what the towers will look like from the citadel. Sweet.
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Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 8:07 PM
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This is such a rad proposal.

What's the current status? Are they selling units yet, or generally moving forward with an estimated completion date?
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Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 8:21 PM
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They're working on the detailed design at this point. They could theoretically market the condos whenever they finalize the layouts. The narrow tower is a hotel that won't have to be pre-sold.

It didn't really make sense for them to fully design the building before because the proposal could have been appealed again by the Heritage Trust. The Heritage Trust has already lost a council decision and two appeals of the same project. This project was originally proposed in 2004. It has taken 2-3 years just to get approval, which is pretty unreasonable.
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Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 8:40 PM
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2-3 years in the pre-approval stage would spell disaster for most projects. Seems like the proponents are equally concerned with building a lasting landmark as they are with making the numbers work. Nice to see.
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Old Posted Oct 21, 2007, 9:38 PM
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As well as completing the detailed design of the buildings, do they not also still have to acquire the land on the eastern side of the block? Where there is still a small office building?
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 2:51 AM
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I'm actually suprised a project that tall was approved in Halifax.
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 2:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cityguy View Post
I'm actually suprised a project that tall was approved in Halifax.
Well it certainly wasn't easy!
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 3:34 AM
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They will be a great addition to the city. Can't wait until construction actually begins.

They look great
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 6:00 AM
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Quote:
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I'm actually suprised a project that tall was approved in Halifax.
They'll actually be the third tallest in the city, behind Fenwick and one of the office towers. The Maritime Centre, one block South, is only a few metres shorter.
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 1:36 PM
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http://www3.ns.sympatico.ca/heritage...s_texpark.html

That is the "artist's rendering" of how the towers would block the view from the Citadel that the Heritage Trust used in their appeals...

Fortuantly, it didn't sway anybody.

It will be interesting to see how the towers will actually conform (or not conform) to that drawing.


EDIT: I noitced in one of the original renderings that there are "Channel" and "Louis Vuitton" signs on the commerical portion of the structure at street level, I wonder how realistic those are, lol.

Last edited by phrenic; Oct 22, 2007 at 1:42 PM. Reason: Noticed something in original rendering
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 5:05 PM
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The shape is a bit off in that "rendering", but the scale is pretty close. What's misleading is that they cropped out all the other tall buildings that block the view in a similar way. Another factor to consider is that the glass cladding will make the building somewhat reflective.

The elevation image is totally misleading, because (1) that vantage point doesn't even exist in reality, and (2) it's like looking through a telephoto lens. That's not how people see things in practice. In reality, even a 3-4 storey building 30-40 feet away blocks a huge part of your field of view. The towers won't be very noticeable on Barrington, not that that would be a huge problem anyway (there are already half a dozen office towers *on* Barrington Street).

As for this one, I think it makes a case for the UG development. The tower looks great (although in practice it won't actually be tilted, that's just what they've done with the image, maybe because they just didn't realise it or maybe because they wanted to make it look scarier):



Ideally, in my opinion, the scene would include another large tower next to the Bank of Canada on Hollis and the 3-4 storey Discovery Centre/Reflections building would be used as the base of a new office building 6-8 storeys in height.
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Old Posted Oct 22, 2007, 5:41 PM
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Yes, I think that the Discovery Centre/Reflections building would be perfect as a tower base. Is that the Woolco Building?

Also, the 30's style CBC building at Bell Rd. would look nice with a couple of glass floors of offices above it in black glass.
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Old Posted Oct 23, 2007, 10:21 AM
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The project is growing on me. I like the idea of a reflective glass tower -- the material can achieve very interesting visual effects when viewed from various angles at different times of the day, and isn't nearly as offensive to surrounding areas as exposed concrete. However, I still wish they would re-design the street elevation. The ground-level facade looks disturbingly institutional (even 'Torontonian') for downtown Halifax.
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  #18  
Old Posted Oct 23, 2007, 8:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keninhalifax View Post
The project is growing on me. I like the idea of a reflective glass tower -- the material can achieve very interesting visual effects when viewed from various angles at different times of the day, and isn't nearly as offensive to surrounding areas as exposed concrete. However, I still wish they would re-design the street elevation. The ground-level facade looks disturbingly institutional (even 'Torontonian') for downtown Halifax.
Oh oh Ken pulls out the Torontonian comment!

Personally I think the street level component is one of the stronger parts of the proposal. It's about time we had a nice podium/tower building in the city and I like how the abstract shapes break up the long facade.
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Old Posted Nov 1, 2007, 4:02 AM
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Here are some old imagines I found.

View from of Barrington.


View of skyline.
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Old Posted Nov 20, 2007, 2:03 AM
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Whats the official name for this project now?
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