A new neighbourhood will soon be built – where the Cogswell Interchange now stands – designed to connect downtown with the north end and waterfront, creating a stronger, more inclusive network of communities.
The Cogswell District project will convert 16 acres of road infrastructure into a mixed-use neighborhood, extending the entrance of the downtown northwards and reuniting communities separated by the interchange lands. The urban street grid will be reinstated and will create development blocks capable of supporting new residential and commercial environments for 2,500 people. High quality dedicated cycling lanes, multi-use trails, new parks and open spaces, a reimagined transit hub, and a significant central urban square will transform this traffic-centric area into a livable pedestrian friendly area for people to live, work, and play.
The completion of the Cogswell District project is expected to cost approximately $122.6 million (gross). This project has the potential to be primarily self-funded in the long term once construction is over and the redevelopment of the area is completed. The sale of land, utility cost sharing, and the subsequent property taxes will help off-set the front-end investment and generate long-term recurring revenue for the municipality.
Notably, a district energy system based on ambient heat recovery from the Halifax Wastewater Treatment Plant will provide a green energy source for buildings constructed within the Cogswell District. Specific design elements to enhance overall accessibility have been incorporated within the District and will allow the project to meet gold level certification under the Rick Hansen Certification program.
The construction plan aligns with many of Council’s previously approved policy directives. Several features of the new Cogswell District represent the first implementation of many aspects of these policies – including the Halifax Economic Growth Plan 2016-2021, Integrated Mobility Plan, and Centre Plan.
Significant notice will be provided prior to construction beginning. Throughout the project, road closure and detour information will be shared via halifax.ca, through public service announcements, municipal social media channels, digital and print advertisements, and through a new mobile app (launching in the coming months).
During the September 14, 2021 Regional Council meeting, the construction tender was awarded to Dexter Construction Limited.
The project’s pre-construction phase, which started in mid-September, is expected to last three months. Fully mobilized construction will begin in winter 2022. The construction phase of the project is expected to take up to four years to complete.
Construction of three by-pass roads is currently targeted for completion in spring 2022. A construction schedule for the by-pass roads will be shared once it has been finalized and residents will be provided advanced notice regarding impacts to traffic, to allow for proper route planning.
By-pass roads #1 and #2 will modify north-south traffic through the construction site, while by-pass road #3 will modify east-west traffic. These by-pass roads are necessary to enable construction zones to be set up within the project site. See here for detour maps.
The municipality remains committed to timely communications throughout this project. Road closure and detour information will be shared with residents on halifax.ca, through public service announcements, municipal social media channels, digital and print advertising and a new mobile app, which will launch in the coming months.
Read the staff report shared at the September 14 Regional Council meeting.
On February 26, 2019 Regional Council approved the 90% construction design plan and gave direction to proceed with tendering construction services for the project. (View presentation to Regional Council and staff report.)
Council also directed staff to continue with public engagement, utilizing the Public Art policy as appropriate, to finalize placemaking and commemoration aspects of the Cogswell District. In particular, focus will be placed on completing ongoing engagement with the Mi'kmaw and African Nova Scotian communities. Staff will return to Council with a report regarding timeline, phasing construction to align with other street recapitalization projects, and options to fund the Cogswell Greenway including potential use of development charges on adjacent development sites.
Significant public feedback was used to inform the approved design plan addresses public realm elements including accessibility, public art and commemorative features, parks and open spaces, multi-use paths, streetscapes, and a transit hub for the new neighborhood.
To access background details, reports, presentations and plans - as well as insights gathered from public engagement to date - visit the online engagement portal for the Cogswell District project.