Developer, church have vision for 'most important street corner in Halifax'
(from the CH online)
The corner of Spring Garden Road and Barrington Street was once the gateway into the city, and a new development concept there could become an area for “various expressions of civic life,” said the archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Halifax-Yarmouth.
Archbishop Anthony Mancini unveiled his vision for Cathedral Centre on Tuesday morning at the newly renovated Saint Mary’s Glebe House, along with Robert Salah and Joe Ramia, head of Rank Inc., who will oversee development of the site.
The refurbished glebe, Saint Mary’s Cathedral Basilica, the church hall, the Catholic pastoral building, as well as surrounding lands that extend from Barrington to Grafton Street will comprise the Cathedral Centre.
“It’s a concept that comes from the realization that this is the centre of the city, this is the most important street corner in Halifax,” Mancini told reporters convened on the first floor of the glebe, first built in 1891.
A future component of the site could be a mixed-use, multiple-unit affordable housing building, with ground-floor commercial, the archbishop said.
“We’d like to be able to help people who have lived in this area have a place to live in. Most cities, people leave the centre, and we would like to be able to, somehow, not only keep the ones that are here, but maybe even attract a few others to come here, because the centre of the city is what makes a place vibrant.”
The property includes parking lots and the former Saint Mary’s boys school on Grafton Street, which may eventually be redeveloped into a commercial or retail component of Cathedral Centre as a future income stream.
“We also want it to be a development that will generate some funds,” Mancini said. “That’s the whole point of the exercise, so I’m not ashamed of saying that.
“We’re trying to find ways to for the church to carry on what we’re here to do, but with the ways and the means that are of this particular time and of this particular place.”
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