UPDATED SEPTEMBER 13, 2023
On September 12, 2023, Regional Council initiated a process to amend Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy in support of this application. Please refer to the Status Section of this page for more information.
Application by Dexel Developments Ltd to:
(a) amend Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy; and
(b) enter into a development agreement for a 30-storey mixed use residential and commercial building situated at Spring Garden Rd, Robie and Carlton Streets.
Dexel Developments Limited is applying for amendments to the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy to increase the scope of consideration of Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46. If adopted, the amendments to Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46 would allow for:
• An increase in the permitted floor area ratio on the tower building site;
• A decrease in the tower separation distance required between two towers on a shared podium;
• An increase in the permissible floor area of tower portions;
• The identification of signature architectural projections as secondary elements in setback and stepback requirements;
• The identification of a one-storey residential penthouse as a rooftop feature that can exceed the overall maximum height;
• A two-percent tolerance for maximum building height, streetwall heights, and building podium heights; and
• The consideration of opportunities for collaboration with a development on the neighbouring site, identified as Site B on Map 24 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy.
Dexel Developments Limited is also applying for a development agreement under Policies IM-42, IM-43, and IM-44 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy to allow a mixed-use (residential and commercial) development for lands fronting Spring Garden Road, Robie Street and Carlton Street, Halifax. The proposed mixed-use development consists of: towers up to 90 metres in height and 810 square metres in size; streetwalls and building podiums between 13 metres and 16 metres in height; and a total floor area ratio (FAR) of 9.1, while maintaining prescribed setback distances from, and integrating the overall development with, registered heritage properties located along Carlton Street.
The subject site includes four registered heritage properties along Carleton Street (#1478, #1480/#1484 and #1494 Carlton Street). On January 29, 2019, Halifax Regional Council approved substantial alterations for the 4 registered heritage properties. The substantial alterations included the following:
• Removing a portion of the rear wing of 1478 Carlton Street to facilitate the subdivision of the property and shortening of the rear yard;
• Restoring the original central chimneys of 1480 and 1484 Carlton Street;
• Replacing modern windows at the rear of 1480 and 1484 Carlton Street with new windows in-keeping with the building’s character;
• Removing modern dormer windows on the front and rear of 1480 and 1484 Carlton Street, and restoration of original two-over-two single hung windows;
• Removing an attached dwelling and breezeway at 1494 Carlton Street to allow construction of a commercial access and construction of a new building podium; and
• Undertaking a complete restoration of 1494 Carlton Street to its original form and configuration based on photographic and archival evidence.
The substantial alterations were reviewed by the Heritage Advisory Committee on December 12, 2018.
There are two steps to this application.
Step 1: The application is a request to amend Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy. Before Regional Council can make any decision about amending the Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy, a public hearing must be held.
Step 2: The application is a request to enter into a development agreement under Policies IM-42, IM-43 and IM-44 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy. Before Halifax and West Community Council can make any decision about the proposal, a public hearing must also be held.
Regional Council and Halifax and West Community Council are able to hold a combined public hearing to deal with both steps of the process.
This application has had a long history and was originally considered through a plan amendment process.
On August 1, 2017, Regional Council directed staff to consider this application as a site-specific amendment to the now-replaced Halifax Municipal Planning Strategy. Specifically, Regional Council directed staff to continue to process this request for site-specific secondary municipal planning strategy amendments subject to the proposal: (a) generally aligning with the June 2017 Centre Plan document relative to Urban Structure, Height and Floor Area Ratio, and (b) addressing the planning principles of transition, pedestrian-orientation, human-scale, building design, and context-sensitive as noted the report.
As part of the public engagement strategy for this application, Halifax Peninsula Planning Advisory Committee and municipal Planning Staff held a public meeting on Monday, June 11, 2018. (Public Meeting Notes)
This application was reviewed by the Halifax Peninsula Planning Advisory Committee on August 20, 2018. (Staff Presentation to Halifax Peninsula Planning Advisory Committee).
Regional Council hosted a public hearing on July 15, 2019 at Halifax City Hall. Following the hearing, Regional Council passed a motion to adopt the proposed amendments to the Halifax Municipal Planning Strategy and the Halifax Peninsula Land Use By-law. The amendments were reviewed by the Provincial Director of Planning and came into effect. The amendments allowed for the consideration of development through the development agreement process.
Subsequent to this, the entire policy and land use regulatory context (Halifax Municipal Planning Strategy and Halifax Peninsula Land Use By-law) affecting Peninsula Halifax were completely replaced with the coming into force of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy and the Regional Centre Land Use By-law. The Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy contains policies (IM-42, IM-43, and IM-44) to enable Halifax and West Community Council to consider a development agreement on the subject lands.
The new policies IM-42, IM-43, and IM-44 were intended to allow Community Council to consider a development agreement for a proposal submitted in June 2021. However, after further review, staff determined that the enabling policy set was not sufficient in scope to consider all elements of the June 2021 proposal. Therefore, amendments to the enabling policies will first be required before a development agreement for the June 2021 proposal can be considered by Community Council.
On September 12, 2023, a staff report was before Regional Council for its consideration. Following discussion of the report recommendations, Regional Council initiated a process to consider amending Policies IM-43, IM-44, and IM-46 of the Regional Centre Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy in support of the application. Before any Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy amendments can be approved, Regional Council must first hold a public hearing.
Before a development agreement is approved, Halifax and West Community Council must also hold a public hearing. Regional Council and Halifax and West Community Council have the ability to combine both public hearings into one public hearing.
As per Section 240A of the Halifax Regional Municipality Charter, Council is able to provisionally approve a development agreement at the same meeting that it approves amendments to a municipal planning strategy that would be required to enable the consideration of the development agreement. The development agreement provisionally approved is considered fully approved when the supporting amendments to the municipal planning strategy take effect.
A copy of any staff report related to this application may be obtained by contacting the office of the Municipal Clerk at 902-490-4210.
Documents Submitted for Evaluation
The applicant has submitted plans and studies required by municipal staff to properly evaluate the application.
Updated Materials Submitted between June 2021 and February 2023
- Project Plans (Legal Description of the Lands, Site Plan, Subdivision of Land, Preliminary Landscape Plan, Setback and Stepback Plan, Elevations, Parking Levels, Floor Plans, and Roof Plan)
- Halifax Citadel Rampart Sight Lines Certification
- Floor Area Ratio Calculation Table
- Traffic Impact Study
- Pedestrian Wind Impact Assessment
- Pedestrian Wind Impact Assessment Addendum #1
- Pedestrian Wind Impact Assessment Addendum #2
- Shadow Impact Study Letter
- Shadow Impact Study
- Architectural Renderings
- Servicing Schematic