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  #1  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 4:24 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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[Halifax] Victoria Hall (2438 Gottingen) | 51 m | 16 fl | Proposed

Application for a Development Agreement is being made for the redevelopment of Victoria Hall, on Gottingen St. with a new 16-storey residential tower on the Creighton St. side of the site. Base of the tower is a three-storey podium - looks to

HRM Development Agreement page with supporting documents: https://www.halifax.ca/business/plan...street-halifax

This has not yet begun the public input process.

Last edited by eastcoastal; Feb 7, 2019 at 8:31 PM. Reason: corrected ft to m in title
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  #2  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 4:32 PM
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Here's one of the renderings:



Comments from the peanut gallery:

- I like the tower and the idea of doing this style of redevelopment to support the redevelopment of the heritage building. I also think this is an important site along Barrington.
- This style of development is pretty popular in Halifax. There's another similar one on Brunswick Street.
- What's with the abstract faux historic rowhouse style with mansard roofs on the back side? That is so ugly. Just use a style that fits with the tower, but at a lowrise scale. There's nothing bad about mixing modern buildings in with a streetscape that is already very diverse.
- Hopefully they'll restore the cast iron fence.
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  #3  
Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 4:45 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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...What's with the abstract faux historic rowhouse style with mansard roofs on the back side? That is so ugly. Just use a style that fits with the tower, but at a lowrise scale. ...
They say the "roof" is a nod to Victoria Hall, but Victoria Hall doesn't really have a presence on Creighton St, so probably better to do as you suggest, and design something that fits with THAT streetscape and the tower (which is non-offensive to me).
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 5:36 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Originally Posted by eastcoastal View Post
They say the "roof" is a nod to Victoria Hall, but Victoria Hall doesn't really have a presence on Creighton St, so probably better to do as you suggest, and design something that fits with THAT streetscape and the tower (which is non-offensive to me).
Wow that's fugly. Reminds me of some of those strange buildings built in the sixties or seventies that had odd mansard-ish roof proportions but just looked bizarre. ...or some of those 'modern' houses they built in Clayton Park back then...

They should really just build something that jibes with the rest of the building back there instead of some cheap-looking statement where nobody will understand what they were trying to do anyhow...

Example of those weird buildings

Another example

Example of Clayton Park 'modern'
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 5:56 PM
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Keith P. Keith P. is offline
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I am of the camp that never finds mansard roofs to be an attractive design theme. Having said that, there is nothing wrong with Mark's Clayton Park modern example. It is not a mansard design and to me just looks like a modern design theme, which may or may not be one's cup of tea. I think it looks better than the more traditional neighbor property.

I'm not sure what you could design that would fit with this ugly streetscape on Creighton:

https://goo.gl/maps/v6RRLqi2Cms

The proposal is a massive improvement.
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 6:58 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Fair comment. I've always thought those houses that seem to be traceable back to a particular period to be a little strange due to their cubelike appearance and flat roofs. It comes down to preference, I suppose, as some love Brutalist architecture and some hate it, for example.

The rendering on the Creighton St. side reminded me of those buildings, so I included a random example from Google maps.

I think the rule of thumb here for this particular case is that 'real' is always better than 'faux' (except in rare cases when it's done particularly well).
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 7:41 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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... I'm not sure what you could design that would fit with this ugly streetscape on Creighton... The proposal is a massive improvement.
I don't think that, in order to "fit" with the ugly streetscape, you need to copy aesthetics. I suspect that if we were to generalize the built form, we'd expect simple massing with somewhat balanced window openings. A more nuanced approach might look for successful ways (if there are any) that residential on Creighton St manages the public/private interface: with buildings so close to the street line, they've got to be designed well to keep if from feeling like there's a constant parade of strangers through your living room. Raise the first floor, incorporate some plantings, etc.

Agreed that it's a massive improvement over the existing run-down buildings nearby.
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 7:58 PM
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Is it just me or does it look like their leaving room for another tower on the site?
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 8:07 PM
Phalanx Phalanx is offline
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Just a small note... but I assume the title data should be 170ft, not m...
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 8:30 PM
IanWatson IanWatson is offline
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That rendering is downright atrocious and bordering on irresponsible.

Apparently the height of a floor in the tower is going to be half that of one in Victoria Hall??

Or maybe they just want to downplay the height of the tower...

And apparently Gottingen has been invaded by a jungle.

EDIT of my EDIT: The elevation drawings DO include one from Gottingen.

Last edited by IanWatson; Feb 8, 2019 at 12:20 PM.
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 8:31 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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Originally Posted by Phalanx View Post
Just a small note... but I assume the title data should be 170ft, not m...
oops - yes.

Fixed it, thanks
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 8:33 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
That rendering is downright atrocious and bordering on irresponsible.

Apparently the height of a floor in the tower is going to be half that of one in Victoria Hall??

Or maybe they just want to downplay the height of the tower...
Funny, I had the opposite thought. The god's-eye view seems to make the tower especially looming.
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Old Posted Feb 7, 2019, 8:40 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
... Apparently the height of a floor in the tower is going to be half that of one in Victoria Hall??...
The floors of the tower that are closer to Victoria Hall don't look that much different. I think the perspective makes them appear to shrink as they get higher up and further away from the viewpoint.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
...apparently Gottingen has been invaded by a jungle...
LOL - there are some big trees at the edge of the park across the street, but they're not as "present" as suggested here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IanWatson View Post
.... I note that the building elevations don't include one from the Gottingen perspective.
Sheet A-202 shows the east facade... it omits Victoria Hall, I assume, for clarity. They aren't attached.
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Old Posted Feb 8, 2019, 5:04 PM
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Definitely an improvement.
I was hoping the package of documents would speak more to Victoria Hall and the plans for that as well as the huge space in front of the building. That is one thing that has always bothered me here. It is a beautiful old building but the street presence has always left much more to be desired.

The tower is pretty non descript to me. Not great, but not awful. I do hate how it has the usual Halifax proportions of being too squat to really call it a proper tower.

I have no issue with the mansard feature on the Creighton side. It's not an exact replica, just a way to help the new building speak to the older buildings.
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Old Posted Feb 9, 2019, 9:47 PM
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She's a beaut.
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Old Posted Feb 10, 2019, 3:21 PM
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Glad the area is filling in vertically, the only shame is I always wanted to buy it and turn it into a Boutique Hotel. Ce la vie.
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Old Posted Feb 10, 2019, 7:58 PM
Hali87 Hali87 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
I am of the camp that never finds mansard roofs to be an attractive design theme. Having said that, there is nothing wrong with Mark's Clayton Park modern example. It is not a mansard design and to me just looks like a modern design theme, which may or may not be one's cup of tea. I think it looks better than the more traditional neighbor property.
I agree on this, I like this style when done well. I've also never really been a fan of mansard roofs and the mid-20th century ones in particular seem redundant and needlessly ugly to me (unless they serve a practical purpose that I'm just not aware of). In the case of this proposal I think it would look fine with straight walls but looks a little awkward as-is. There are plenty of modern buildings on Creighton street already (without mansard roofs) and it's not a streetscape that's strongly associated with mansard roofs or anything.
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Old Posted Feb 10, 2019, 8:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hali87 View Post
I agree on this, I like this style when done well. I've also never really been a fan of mansard roofs and the mid-20th century ones in particular seem redundant and needlessly ugly to me (unless they serve a practical purpose that I'm just not aware of). In the case of this proposal I think it would look fine with straight walls but looks a little awkward as-is. There are plenty of modern buildings on Creighton street already (without mansard roofs) and it's not a streetscape that's strongly associated with mansard roofs or anything.
In the 19th century the mansard level was essentially "affordable housing". It was a way to put the roof level to use but it was relatively undesirable because of the stairs, low ceilings, and oddly shaped rooms. There are lots of references to this in literature set in, say, Paris during this period.

In modern buildings they just seem pointless. They are cargo cult architecture; the style is copied but there is no point. If it's going to be a normal floor there is no point to make it look like an oversized mansard roof.

Dormers are similar. Small well-proportioned dormers are nice. But when people blow them up to be as big as the floors below the proportions look off.
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Old Posted Feb 11, 2019, 5:18 PM
eastcoastal eastcoastal is offline
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
...In modern buildings [mansard roofs] just seem pointless. They are cargo cult architecture; the style is copied but there is no point...
Sometimes (not this time, apparently), there is a change of materials, and there is an argument made that the change in geometry + change in materials = perception of smaller scale, when it is determined as desirable.
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