Tag Archives: Halifax Infirmary parkade

April 15 – FHC Follow Up Letter to Parks Canada re Garrison Ground

Thanks very much to Parks Canada for the meeting about the provincial government request for parking on the Garrison Ground. Despite sufficient lead time the QEII hospital redevelopment team is intent on ignoring the health, social, cultural, economic value of protecting and expanding green space. It’s time to pursue available, proven better options for staff and patient transportation. This must not include paving the Halifax Citadel National Park’s Garrison Grounds for parking.
Details here: 2024 FHC April letter to Parks Canada copy.pages

NS Health’s proposed parking lot paving project on the Garrison Ground at Parks Canada’s Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

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Trees at Willow Tree intersection - soon to be cut down

Shame – Premier Houston & Mayor Savage Ignore ~3,400 Citizens & CUT 20 Robie & Bell Road Trees!

When FHC heard Premier Houston’s provincial government wanted Mayor Savage and HRM’s permission to cut 37 trees on Robie, Bell Road & Summer for the QEII hospital expansion, we knew there was a better option — take the building back from the edge so the tree roots were safe. Together our collective effort reduced the number of cuts to ~20. But HRM issued permits and cut ~20 trees despite opposition from ~3,400 citizens. In a climate crisis and knowing the importance of trees to our city and personal health, governments & builders must do better. Trees and Healthcare need to co-exist. Shame.
Up next? Premier Houston’s Health & Wellness wants Parks Canada to pave green space on the Halifax Citadel National Park’s Garrison Grounds for hospital parking.  Why is the Premier and his Minister of of Health determined to wreck Halifax’s public realm for the QEII hospital expansion? Shame.

Trees at Willow Tree intersection - soon to be cut down

Photo: Several of the 20 trees along Robie St. & Bell Rd. that  Premier Houston and Mayor Savage allowed to be cut down to expand the QEII Hospital complex.

See below for Our Actions to Help Protect Our Trees!

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(April 7) FHC to Minister Guilbeault – Do Not Pave Halifax Citadel’s Garrison Ground for Parking

“It is completely unacceptable that you as Minister of Environment and Climate Change, or a department of your government would contemplate such a thing as paving green space for expanding parking given its health, social, cultural, historic, environmental importance and negative impact on these. Or support the ongoing destruction of our environment. Do not permit the paving of the Garrison Ground. Please work to ensure that this plan does not proceed.” Details:
2024 FHC letter Guilbeault, Paving Garrrison Ground copy.pages

NS Health’s proposed parking lot paving project on the Garrison Ground at Parks Canada’s Halifax Citadel National Historic Site

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Todd Veinotte Asks FHC About Paving the Garrison Ground for Healthcare Parking

(Ki’jupuk) Todd Veinotte & Peggy Cameron discuss the Nova Scotia’s Department of Health pitch to Parks Canada to pave more green space on the Halifax Citadel’s Garrison Grounds for healthcare parking. Already ~30% of the Common is parking/parkades, mostly hospital. Have a listen, learn more about better options. Then please write to Parks Canada to say “no way!” April 24th deadline: halifax@pc.gc.ca 
Include: Steven.Guilbeault@parl.gc.ca  andy.fillmore@parl.gc.ca 
To help you, please see the list of concerns below Todd’s pic.
FHC has been working for better transportations options since 2007. (See Tag)

Below are some concerns to mention in your email

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Todd Veinotte- Why Halifax Common Pool Needs a Better Location

Halifax Central Common Pool re-do — good idea bad location.

News 97.5 Todd Veinotte explores FHC’s concerns and better ideas for where / how HRM could locate the $16 million dollar pool. (Hint: not next to a traffic corridor & 1500 cars worth of pollution)

Halifax Common Pool – HRM Dives into the Wrong End of Planning Process

(Ki’jupuk / Halifax) HRM’s ad hoc planning (get it done) vs long term (do it right) once again drowns potential for the best outcome — in this case for the Halifax Common’s new aquatic centre.

Your car, my lungs –a powerful mural by Marta Frej, via @WarszawaBezSmog)

While always supportive of and recognizing the need for a new public outdoor aquatic centre, Friends of Halifax Common continue to be disappointed with a process that now has HRM diving into an unsuitable location with an unknown building design for the Central Common swimming pool re-design. 

Ahead of any public consultation HRM established a new aquatic centre as a top objective of the 2017 Halifax Common Master Plan. On-going disregard for public consultation now lands the $16 million-dollar project ahead of a final Halifax Common Master Plan.

This predetermined outcome ignores considering other locations that would increase public open green space and save money with rationalized facility use. It also ignores the Feb 8, 2022 directive HRM staff received to “undertake public consultation and a review of the Master Plan and return to Regional Council within 18 months with the results of the consultation and any recommended amendments, along with implementation plans as may be advised.”

Most importantly better location choices would avoid the well-known harmful health impact of traffic pollution, noise and accidents that will result from the addition of at least 1500 cars using the QEII hospital’s two new $100 million dollar parking garages directly across the street. That the parkades are associated with the hospital redevelopment will not alleviate the grave and known impact that traffic emissions have on children’s health.

Locating the pool near the Citadel High School could have budgeted financial support for the completion of the upper floor(s) of the HRM recreational space inside the school. HRM has paid 7% of the building’s operational fee since 2007 but the upper ~10,500 ft2  remains unfinished and unused. 

Or locating the pool on the Centennial Pool parking lot could have expanded public green space by landscaping/naturalizing that area. And use or expansion of the Centennial’s staff offices, change rooms and washroom facilities could have reduced overall building requirements and facility costs.

HRM staff’s record of public comments at the December 2017 consultation raised concerns about predeterming the prioritization of the pool and many asked that HRM “Wait for Master Plan.” That public consultation did not find that there should be a new building. The design for the aquatic centre area from that time did not show an increase in the building footprint which evidently is now two buildings. 

There has been no public consultation on the present building design- an architectural black box – even though citizens will presumably be users of the year-round community room, kitchenette and performance space. Limiting public consultation can only curtail the imagination and creativity that might lead us to one day design and approve a natural, wild-space play area.

For the future FHC looks forward to a complete, approved and registered Halifax Common Master Plan. That final Plan should reflect proper and fully engaged public consultation and be informed by the 1994 Halifax Common Plan, not the desires of HRM staff. A Plan that protects and plans for the entire Halifax Common granted “to and for the use of the inhabitants of the town of Halifax as Common, forever” in 1763. And a Plan that is in place before beginning to implement, build, renovate or achieve any agreed-upon new elements to the Halifax Common. 

Halifax Common Master Plan Approval Delayed by HRM Standing Committee

HRM’s Community and Economic Development Standing Committee met on Wednesday, Dec 8, and agreed to delay approving the Halifax Common Master Plan just released on Friday, December 3, 2021. FHC’s Howard Epstein and Alan Ruffman were among several speakers and concerned groups including the Halifax Lancers These speakers asked that the draft Plan not go forward to HRM Council until an appropriate review of the  lengthy (496 pp) document could take place. Thank you to the many who wrote to ask for the delay.

The Halifax Common grant in 1763 was for 235 acres " to and for the use of the inhabitants of the town of Halifax as Common, forever." This entire area was to be considered for planning purposes in the 1994 Halifax Common Plan.

The Halifax Common grant in 1763 was for 240 acres ” to and for the use of the inhabitants of the town of Halifax as Common, forever.” This entire area was to be considered for planning purposes in the 1994 Halifax Common Plan.

Howard Epstein, presented on behalf of FHC as follows:

Submission to HRM Community Planning and Economic Development Standing Committee, Re: Halifax Common Master Plan

Proposal—Friends of Halifax Common asks that the Committee refer the draft Master Plan back to HRM staff to conduct further public consultations and receive comments, over a period of at least two months. There are three main reasons for this: Continue reading

New Parking Garage Proposal is 8-storeys on north side of NS Museum

proposed site for 8-story, 512 spot parkade north of the NS Museusm of Natural History. It will connect with the infirmary by a pedway over Summer Street and its entrance will be on Bell Road.FHC has written a letter to HRM Council asking that they refuse the Provincial Government’s latest proposal for an 8-storey, 512 stall parking garage on the north side of the Nova Scotia Museum Site. (An entrance would be on Bell Road and it would connect to the Halifax Infirmary via a pedway across Summer.)  A second 1000-stall parking garage and a steam plant would be built on the former CBC-TV site. The proposal and staff report, are the only items for Council’s virtual meeting on Thursday April 9. There has been no public consultation.

The Friends of Halifax Common ask that Council adopt resolutions to:

  1. Remind the Province that in its unilateral original proposal it did not abide by the Memorandum of Understanding MOU (2008) between HRM and the Province to consult over any proposed new uses for Halifax Common land;
  2. Reaffirm that the 1968 conveyance of the land at “City Field” from the City of Halifax to the province was required for a Nova Scotia Museum and was “made available to the Province for such a purpose”, not a parking garage (see the deed and 1968 Halifax Council resolution here nsm 1968);
  3. State the intention of HRM not to facilitate the placement of a parking garage or pedway on any land adjacent to the Museum; and
  4. Affirm the preference of HRM that any expansion or reconfiguration of Halifax Infirmary buildings take place exclusively within the confines of the 21.5 acres of Halifax Common land now occupied by it (bounded by Robie St, Bell Road, Summer St, and Veterans Memorial Lane).

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