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Old Posted Dec 30, 2009, 10:25 PM
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[Halifax] TD Tower Expansion | 83 m | 23 fl | Completed

I think its about time this has a proper thread. I've only copied the articles since there were a lot of posts afterwards dealing with both projects.




Source: The Chronicle Herald

Downtown projects in works
Expansion of TD office tower among Halifax building plans

By CHRIS LAMBIE Business Editor
Tue. Dec 29 - 4:45 AM

Barrington Street is on the cusp of several major construction projects that could transform it from what sometimes seems like a ghost town into a bustling city centre.

The owner of the TD building plans to double the size of the downtown office complex, Halifax Mayor Peter Kelly said Monday.

"I think it would be great," Mr. Kelly said.

"It would be class A space. And there is an increased demand for the space, especially with the financial service sector that’s been increasing here. It will certainly bode well for that niche."

The 18-storey building is located on Barrington at the north corner of George Street. The 73-metre building is owned by TDB Halifax Holdings Ltd. The company’s president, Farhad Vladi, is a well-known broker who deals in renting and selling islands worldwide. He has offices in Halifax and Germany. Calls to both offices went unreturned Monday.

The TD building now only occupies half the block between Barrington and Granville streets, said Andy Fillmore, the city’s urban designer.

The east side of the building doesn’t have any windows, he said.

"It’s just a sort of blank, unappealing wall," Mr. Fillmore said. "It was built that way for fire code reasons on the speculation that eventually somebody would eventually build something above the other half of the block."

The owner is going to take advantage of the fact that the glass curtain walls on the existing TD building are at the end of their useful life and need to be replaced, he said.

"They’re going to basically build the other half of the building. So it’s essentially doubling the size of each floor plate," Mr. Fillmore said.

"All that mirrored glass will be replaced by clear glass."

The project will re-create the historic façade of the Kelly luggage building demolished about 18 months ago, he said.

"They’re going to keep the façade of the currently existing flower shop that’s just to the north of the vacant lot, and then they’re going to build behind and above those. In other words, they’re going to be maintaining and even re-creating the historic feel of Granville Street in that area, and then the upper storeys will step back from that."

There’s also whispering that the former NFB building that’s now a facade being held up by steel girders could soon be undergoing construction.

In other downtown development news, the mayor said Lou Reznick is looking at installing a boutique hotel in one of his Barrington Street properties. Mr. Reznick’s company, Starfish Properties, owns the Sam the Record Man buildings, as well as the former Granite Brewery building next door.

"I never comment on tenants; we just want to get our permits approved and get on with construction," Mr. Reznick said in an interview from Toronto.

The work on the three buildings, which Starfish dubs East Space, is moving forward under the new HRM by Design guidelines.

"We should be in front of the design review committee by January or February," Mr. Reznick said.

Chris Galea, a St. Francis Xavier business professor who heads a group of private investors from Ontario, said he has approached Mr. Reznick about the idea of opening a micro boutique hotel in one of his Barrington Street properties.

"As a business model and a place to go, it would be a fantastic spot," Mr. Galea said, noting he’s also looked at other downtown properties for the project.

"It’s a growing phenomenon in Europe where hotels are springing up that are very high-end, but they’ve got very small rooms," Mr. Galea said in a telephone interview from Antigonish.

"Think more like a cabin on a high-end sailboat as opposed to a big, sprawling room. What you save on space costs, both in capital costs and in running the hotel, you end up putting into very good quality in the rooms. But you’re able to offer the rooms at a much more reasonable rate than rooms in a similar location with the same level of amenities."

The standard North American hotel room is around 320 square feet, he said. "We’re talking about rooms of around 100 or 125 square feet," said Mr. Galea, who runs his own hospitality company, South Side Vacations Inc., which rents vacation properties.

The size of the hotel could be adjusted to fit into an existing building, he said.

"Anywhere from a 50- to a 100-room hotel would certainly fit into our business projections," Mr. Galea said.

Mr. Reznick will capitalize on the new heritage grants and incentive program to renovate the facades of the three buildings, said the city’s urban designer.

"He’s tapping in substantially to the new grants program as part of the Barrington Street heritage conservation district," Mr. Fillmore said. "He’s going to be like the poster child for the efficacy of the conservation district."

Two rooftop storeys will be squeezed on to the three existing buildings, he said.

"Those are going to be stepped back significantly and they’re going to be contemporary in design."

Starfish is also planning to tear down the Roy building and re-create the Barrington facade with a 17-storey tower behind it on Granville, Mr. Fillmore said.

( clambie@herald.ca)

More on the TD building. This is is long overdue and a great project. Hopefully the approval process goes through without any delays from opposition. This could probably have it's own thread now.

Source: The Chronicle Herald




Let the building begin, developer says

By CHRIS LAMBIE Business Editor
Wed. Dec 30 - 4:45 AM

The president of the company that plans to double the size of the TD building has thrown down the gauntlet with the $20-million project aimed at providing Halifax its first major dollop of new office space in two decades.

The 18-storey building located on Barrington Street at the north corner of George Street is owned by TDB Halifax Holdings Ltd.

"Everyone has building permits," the company’s president, Farhad Vladi, said Tuesday in a telephone interview from Forsyth Island, off the coast of New Zealand.

He named several local developers who have permits in hand to build new office space.

"But no one really has the guts to start," Mr. Vladi said. "And I guess whoever has the guts will be rewarded."

While Mr. Vladi, a well-known island broker, is president of the company that owns the TD building, he said the equity partner is Gunter Thiel of Switzerland.

"Mr. Thiel, who is the principal, takes the risk, but that’s what you have to do in this kind of environment, otherwise no one starts," he said.

"Someone needs to have the courage and just start. And I am very confident it will be good because Halifax is an excellent location."

Mr. Vladi acknowledges that doubling the size of the TD building, which now occupies half the block between Barrington and Granville streets, will be "a bit easier (than putting up an entirely new structure) because the building already exists and the glass cladding has to be done anyway."

Architect Bill Anwyll said it will cost between $18 million and $20 million to double the size of the building. He’s hoping for approval from the city within three months.

"Then it will be another six months for us to do the working drawings and go to tender," Mr. Anwyll said.

Construction could start as soon as September, he said.

"It’s going to take about a year and a quarter" to build, Mr. Anwyll said.

"Halifax has to, obviously, create some class A office space and this is going to be one of the buildings that is going to help contribute to that," he said.

The TD building’s relatively small existing floor plate can make it difficult to compete with other office buildings, Mr. Anwyll said.

"So people, if they can’t get the floor plate they want, they move into a grade B office, and then they mumble and grumble about how Halifax is the end of the earth and nobody wants to go there because all they’ve got is a bunch of crappy old buildings," he said.

"We’re going to take this building, we’re going to double the size of the floor plate up to a reasonable sort of size. At the same time, we’re going to put in total state-of-the-art, highly efficient mechanical and electrical systems and new cladding on the outside of the building that will make it a whole lot more economical to run. It will essentially be the first decent-sized (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design-certified) building in the Maritimes."

The doubled TD building will have a total of about 208,000 square feet of office space, he said.

No tenants are formally contracted yet, said Robert Richardson, president of Compass Commercial Realty, the building’s property manager.

"We believe there is fairly good appetite given that it will be a LEED-certified building," Mr. Richardson said.

"It’s certainly an attraction for a number of tenants. They do like the fact that it will be very energy efficient and let’s call it, for the lack of a better term, green."

He’s optimistic that the building, which will have a grass roof, won’t be tough to fill.

"There hasn’t been a new building built in Halifax in 20 years," Mr. Richardson said.

"We are . . . confident that we should be able to find quality tenants to take that space."
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  #2  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2009, 3:46 AM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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Good news.
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  #3  
Old Posted Dec 31, 2009, 5:22 PM
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Be a helluva lot more appealing sitting in Elephant & Castle looking out the windows.....
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  #4  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 2:14 PM
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plans are here

www.halifaxdowntown.ca
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  #5  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 2:35 PM
fenwick16 fenwick16 is offline
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Thanks for the link. Once complete, this will be one of the most impressive buildings in Halifax.
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  #6  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 2:48 PM
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Good to see their aiming for the conversion to be built to LEED standards as well.

One of the major problems with this building has been its smaller than average floorplans, which have turned off potential larger tenants over the years. It shouldn't have that problem any more.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 3:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phrenic View Post
Good to see their aiming for the conversion to be built to LEED standards as well.

One of the major problems with this building has been its smaller than average floorplans, which have turned off potential larger tenants over the years. It shouldn't have that problem any more.
The floors in the new building will only be 9,000 sqft, so its not the size of the current A class buildings Purdys, Founders Square, and Summit building who have 20,000 square foot plates.

New buildings like Waterside, International place and the trade centre i believe have a miminum 10,000 to 25,000, so i guess it not all that bad.

Nice remodel for sure, but will be interesting how it goes through the process of HRM by Design.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 5:17 PM
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It looks good. I was somewhat hoping that there would be some sort of distinction between the new and old section. But overall I think it looks great.

I pulled these off the website.















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  #9  
Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 5:39 PM
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Looks like a big blank wall facing CIBC? Funny since I remember in the HRM By Design presentation that blank wall that's currently there being pulled out in the consultant's presentation as an example of poor design.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 5:45 PM
worldlyhaligonian worldlyhaligonian is offline
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Sick.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 5:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spaustin View Post
Looks like a big blank wall facing CIBC? Funny since I remember in the HRM By Design presentation that blank wall that's currently there being pulled out in the consultant's presentation as an example of poor design.
they would be required to have that blank wall to meet building codes (fire protection). There are other ways of dealing with it, but the blank wall is by far the cheapest option. You could have glazing, but would need to make it fire rated.

Personally i rather see the building more stepped in design.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 6:32 PM
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Looks great to me.
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 7:50 PM
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Looks great. Better than I was expecting.

Also, apparently this is 23 floors, so can someone change the thread title if possible?
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Old Posted Jan 9, 2010, 9:18 PM
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The about us portion of the website is interesting and hints at future projects.

Link

Quote:
From the first moment the Thiel family set foot in Nova Scotia, they knew their future would be inextricably intertwined with this place. After a vacation here in 2000, they quickly bought property on a lake in Shelburne County, and built a beautiful log home there. Their frequent visits soon led them to an even greater appreciation of the province, its natural beauty and the people who live here, and the family soon began looking for opportunities to invest in Nova Scotia's future.

They discovered the boundless potential for development in downtown Halifax, and concentrated their efforts there. Between 2001 and 2003, the Thiels bought several iconic commercial buildings, including the Royal Bank Tower, the BMO Tower and the TD Tower. Their vision is to develop those buildings and the surrounding blocks downtown to their fullest capacity as a long-term investment for the city, the province and all Nova Scotians. The proposed rejuvenation of the TD Centre is an opportunity for the family to work with HRM to build a new piece of Halifax.

Since establishing themselves here, the Thiels have brought their passion for art to the province, making several generous contributions to the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (AGNS). The family has combed auctions around the world for just the right pieces to add to the gallery's collection. Günther Thiel has been recognized by the AGNS' Honourary Governor for his exceptional support of the AGNS, the community and the province.
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 2:07 AM
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I pulled some useful information off the website.
First of all is the public consultation.

Public Consultation
One public information session will be held in the main lobby of the TD Centre to present the preliminary design concepts to the public for their feedback. The evening session will be from 7 pm - 9 pm, January 28th.

Three kiosks will be located at HRM Customer Service Centres (Alderney Gate, Scotia Square, West End Mall) from January 11th – 22nd and again from January 28th to February 17th.

Second is the deadline and expected timeline of the development.
It will be about 6 months before they get the permit, after that it seems like they want to start building right away, the overhaul looks like it will take about a year and a half. So about August expect to see some construction

http://www.halifaxdowntown.ca/milestones
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 2:46 AM
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wow, it says on the website that its gonna be 80 meters, thats great
although for some reason i like the old look
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 3:16 AM
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The glass better be that blue.
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 4:26 AM
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Exceeds my expectations though that blank wall is awkward-looking. I know to some extent this would defeat the point of the renovation, but I wish it was stepped back from the Granville St historic facades a liiiiiiitttttle more, even a foot, to furthur accentuate them.

Not to say this change isn't for the better, but I agree with Harlington, I have always liked the look of this tower. It'll lose a bit of its slenderness with the expansion.
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 4:32 AM
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It still looks to be about just as slender looking on the barrington street side, just getting wider as it grows with age
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Old Posted Jan 10, 2010, 4:45 AM
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Expected completion: 1 year, 7 months (August 2011)

Realistic Halifax: November 2020.

Anyways it looks like a good project and will help the financial district a tonne.
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