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Case 19507
Regional Subdivision By-law

(updated 02 June 2016)

Staff has prepared a report for Regional Council’s consideration. The public hearing on the proposed amendments is scheduled for Tuesday, June 21, 2016, at 6:00 p.m. at Halifax City Hall (Council Chamber), 3rd Floor, City Hall, 1841 Argyle Street, Halifax, NS. All oral and written submissions will be considered at that time. Written submissions may be forwarded to the Municipal Clerk by mail, P.O. Box 1749, Halifax, Nova Scotia, B3J 3A5; by fax, 902-490-4208; or by e-mail, clerks@halifax.ca. Written submissions should be received by the Municipal Clerk’s office as early as possible and not later than 3:00 p.m. on June 21, 2016. For any written submissions exceeding three standard letter sized pages in length, ten (10) copies must be supplied to the Municipal Clerk’s office.

It should be noted that the following motion was made by Council at First Reading:

That Halifax Regional Council:

1. Give First Reading to the proposed amendments to the Regional Subdivision By-Law as set out in Attachment A of the March 30, 2016 staff report with the additional amendment:

That section 31 is amended by adding subsections (3) and (4) directly after subsection (2), as follows:

(3) Other than lots meeting the requirements of section 34, wherever possible, side lot lines shall be substantially at right angles or radial to street lines.

(4) Wherever possible, lots shall be uniform in shape and the rear lot lines of a series of adjoining lots shall be continuous, not stepped or jogged.

A strikeout and insert version of the proposed amendments to the Regional Subdivision By-law in context for ease of reading can be found here.


Request
Application by HRM to conduct a limited review and implement amendments to the Regional Subdivision By-law.

Proposal
The following items have been identified by Regional Council based on feedback from the Development Industry and by HRM Staff for review and possible amendment:

  1. LED Streetlights: Review HRM standards, fees, and processes for LED streetlights and consider best practices of other municipalities;
  2. Audit Inspections: Presently, HRM collects an audit inspection fee equal to 2% of the estimated costs of subdivision construction. The review will focus on the amount of the fee in order to determine whether it is appropriate or excessive for all situations;
  3. Parkland Dedication: Review parkland dedication requirements required for all types of development and contexts and the need for clarification between Parkland vs. Conservation Land;
  4. Utility Companies: Review the role of utility companies, including Heritage Gas, in the subdivision approval process;
  5. Street trees and landscaping requirements: Due to damages that occur during home construction, review best practices and consider the appropriate timing and installation of trees and landscaping in new subdivisions; and
  6. Warranty Security: Consider extending warranty security for new HRM infrastructure due to performance and damage that occurs after the current one year period.
  7. Housekeeping amendments: Since its adoption in 2006, staff have identified a list of inaccurate references and required clarifications. These amendments will clarify the operation of the regulations.
  8. Fee review: A review of the current subdivision fees, after reviewing best practices and a study of fees charged in other Municipalities.

For more information on the key topics, please review the fact sheet presentation.

Regional Council initiated the review on February 11, 2014, following the consideration of an initiation report presented by staff.

Public Participation
Regional Council adopted a specific public participation program for this application, to better receive feedback on the amendments. To achieve this, three open house meetings were held; in each of the Eastern (Dartmouth to the Eastern Municipal boundary), Central (Upper Hammonds Plains to Carrolls Corner) and Western (Halifax Peninsula to the western Municipal boundary) regions of the Municipality.

Three open house meetings were held as noted below:

Monday, August 11, 2014 Cole Harbour Place (Stewart Hall Room), 51 Forest Hills Parkway, Dartmouth
Monday, August 18, 2014 BMO Centre (Boardroom), 61 Gary Martin Drive, Bedford
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 Captain William Spry Centre (Kidston Room), 16 Sussex Street, Halifax

The meetings also were advertised in the Municipal Notices section of the newspaper and advertised on the municipal web site events calendar.

Public Meetings
A presentation was made at the start of each of the meetings as a basis for discussion and questions. Minutes were recorded at each meeting, and an online survey was available to the public until September 5, 2014. The survey is now closed.

Process
This application is being considered through the Regional Subdivision By-law amendment process.

Status
Staff has prepared a report for the Community Planning and Economic Development Committee’s consideration. The report will then advance to Regional Council. A strikeout and insert version of the proposed amendments to the Regional Subdivision By-law in context for ease of reading can be found here.

Contact Information

For further information, please contact:

Erin MacIntyre, Planner II
Current Planning
Planning & Development
Telephone : (902) 490-6704

Fax: (902) 490-4406

Email: Erin MacIntyre

Mail: 

Current Planning

Planning & Development
PO Box 1749, Halifax, NS B3J 3A5
Attention: Erin MacIntyre, Planner II