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Old Posted Jul 28, 2018, 12:54 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2001
Location: Vancouver
Posts: 25,035
Originally Posted by Drybrain View Post
I think it's embarrassing too. Most visitors probably don't how poorly we perform on this issue--I was definitely surprised after I started paying attention to issues in the city before moving here; I thought it'd be exactly the opposite, given the city's historic reputation. It's very perplexing.
Halifax's level of heritage preservation reminds me of Vancouver or maybe Calgary. The main differences are that Halifax is an unusually historic place so the stuff torn down is more historically significant and the impact on national historic sites and the like is worse. There's also less of an improvement in the new architecture compared to other cities that have grown by leaps and bounds. Maybe it makes sense to forge ahead and tear lots of stuff down in Calgary because it has grown so much and was relatively young to begin with. I think this is a terrible strategy in Halifax where the history and character is a huge part of what makes the city interesting. Halifax is one of the worst cities I know in terms of good buildings getting torn down for mediocre new development, or ruined by ill-conceived renovations. It's one thing if you're going to tear down generic 2 storey brick commercial buildings from 1920 for a signature office tower. It's another if you're defacing a row of brick Victorians so you can add 8 apartments onto the back.

The good and bad news I guess is that there's a lot left that is in poor shape. It could be torn down but it could also be restored. Halifax could have a lot of amazing-looking historic neighbourhoods with a relatively small amount of well-targeted investment (equal to a small fraction of the money that goes into building new stuff every year in the city).

Example almost-great streetscape:


Most Canadian cities have 0 buildings like Government House, Keith Hall, Black-Binney, or even Benjamin Wier.

Last edited by someone123; Jul 28, 2018 at 1:12 AM.
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