Stopping the garage on the Common, volunteering at HRM, transit changes, more

Hi again,
Quick enewsletter before the weekend.
You may have seen my letter in the Herald, read my email last week, or read some of the media that resulted where I outline my concerns and those of residents about the proposed Halifax Common garage that the province apparently wants to build south of the Natural History Museum.
I continue to engage with the province to try and get them to change course.  Good news is that as of 4:30pm today the tender to build the garage that was rumoured to go public this week has still not been put on the province’s website.
I am asking the Premier to pause this project, to make the entire current QEII plan public, to engage with the community, and to have the plan presented to Halifax Regional Council in a public session. Halifax is ready to partner with the Province to leverage our experience, connections and contacts from local planning processes to ensure all the community voices are heard, and to explore all potential solutions.
Please write the Premier and your area MLA and ask him to make the entire, current QEII plan public, and to pause on building this garage!
Please be advised there will be some gas line work going on at Grafton Street nearby where St David’s is repairing the retaining wall (between Spring Garden and Blowers).  It is not ideal to have this work being done at the same time and unusual to dig up a street during winter, by Heritage Gas informs me that a customer has a heating equipment failure that requires this work be done asap on an emergency basis.  HRM staff have worked to find the least impactful way to get this done.  Work started yesterday cutting the asphalt, and the digging and pipe work and then patching will take place next week Monday Jan 27 to Thursday Jan 30.
Residents on the peninsula should know that the 2020/21 Transit service plan does include a change to a well used route. Route 7 is slated for changes this coming August. The service levels will remain more or less the same, with some routing changes in the North End, and the entire route will be rescheduled based on the latest schedule adherence data, so trip times will change. The biggest impact is that it will become the 7A and 7B, one being the clockwise loop, and the other being counterclockwise.  For those of you who are Halifax history buffs, can we call this “the return of the beltline?”  That was the name of the old circular route the trolleys used until 1949 or so.
The Municipal Clerk’s Office is beginning a recruitment for volunteers to serve on boards & committees.  Recruitment has a deadline of midnight February 10, 2020. They are recruiting for the following committees:

  • Design Advisory Committee
  • Women’s Advisory Committee
  • Western Common Advisory Committee
  • Regional Watersheds Advisory Board

We want to ensure Council has a diverse slate of candidates to consider that is reflective of HRM. If you know of any groups or organizations that should have this information, please share it with them!

This link will take you to the full listing of boards/committees, background information, and the application.

Thanks and have a great weekend!

Public Hearings and Important Meetings

Halifax Regional Council
Tuesday, January 28, 10:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m. | Halifax City Hall, 1841 Argyle Street

Budget Committee
Wednesday, January 29, 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Halifax City Hall, 1841 Argyle Street
Budget committee to discuss the 2020/21 budget  for the Parks & Recreation, Halifax Public Libraries and Planning & Development  departments.

Wednesday, February 5, 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Halifax City Hall, 1841 Argyle Street
Budget committee to discuss the 2020/21 Halifax Regional Police and Halifax Regional Fie & Emergency General Budget.

You can find the agenda, minutes and reports for Regional Council, and Committees of Council here.

Community Events

Government of Canada (GC) Career Expo
Saturday, January 25, 9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. | Dalhousie University, Faculty of Computer Science, 6050 University Avenue, Room 104
Learn about a variety of initiatives in the digital innovation space, speak with leaders from across governments, learn from employees about their student experiences in GC, as well as find out more about student recruitment and network with your potential future employer!  More information can be found here.

How to Make Employers Women-Friendly
Monday, January 27, 6:30 p.m. |Halifax Central Library – BMO Room, 5440 Spring Garden Road.
Learn more about promoting women-friendly work places in this free public lecture by YWCA Executive Director Miia Suokonautio. You can find out more here.

International Holocaust Remembrance Day Film Screening
Monday, January 27, 7:00 p.m. | Pier 21, 1055 Marginal Rd
Those Who Remained tells the story of two individuals brought together in the aftermath of the Second World War, and the complex relationship that develops as they try to navigate the world and find happiness. You can find more information here:

Halifax Pride Event Planner Meeting
Monday, January 27, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. | Halifax Central Library, Spring Garden Road, Lindsay Children’s Room, 2nd Floor
Halifax Pride will host a meeting for those interested in organizing community events during the 2020 Halifax Pride Festival.  The meeting will explore ways Pride can support your efforts and improve the festival event experience for organizers and participants.  More information can be found here.

Bayers Road Project Open House Session
Wednesday, January 29, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. | Maritime Hall at the Halifax Forum, 2901 Windsor Street
Municipal Staff are currently planning for the construction of dedicated bus lanes on Bayers Road between Romans Avenue and Windsor Street. Find out more about the expected implementation approach and time frame at our open house. More information is available online here.

In Conversation with Carrie Allison: Treaty and Community Relationships
Thursday, January 30, 6:30 – 7:30 p.m. | Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, 1723 Hollis Street
Join the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia in Gallery 5 for an evening talk with artist Carrie Allison as she draws connections of treaty and community relationships within the exhibition highlight of works by Indigenous artists Kent Monkman, Jordan Bennett, and Ursula Johnson. More information available here.

UN World Interfaith Harmony Week Interfaith Engagement Program
February 1-9, 2020 | Various venues
This year marks the 10th anniversary of the UN declared World Interfaith Harmony Week which usually occurs the first week of February each year.  With almost daily news of interfaith discrimination, persecution and violence in so many parts of the world, the need to foster and promote interfaith dialogue, understanding, and relationship building continues to grow. Interfaith Harmony Halifax is a community collaborative representing diverse community partners, faiths, people of good will, cultures, ages, skills and abilities Its purpose is to promote the vision of World Interfaith Harmony Week. Events just prior to February and during the first week or so of February include Interfaith Panel Conversations at Library branches, visits to Sacred Spaces which open their doors to the public, an Interfaith Learning program, called Interfaith Engagement, and a Celebration at the Central Library. All events are open to the public and free of charge. More info here

Glass Slipper Prom Dress Giveaway
Saturday, February 1, 12:00 – 4:00 p.m. | Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Road, Paul O’Regan Hall, Floor 1
Need a dress for a prom, semi-formal, or other fancy event?  Come grab one for free.  Just bring along your school ID.  Also, feel free to bring friends and family to help you choose the right dress for you.  Ages 13-19.  You can find more information here.

Making It Count: Assessing the Impact of the Decade for People of African Descent on Policy in NS Monday, February 3, 5:00 – 6:30 p.m. | Ondaatje Hall, Marion McCain Building, 6135 University.
Free public event featuring Dr. OmiSoore Dryden, James Robinson Johnson Chair for Black Canadian Studies.  More information can be found here.

Book Launch
Wednesday, February 5, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. | Dalhousie University, Room 219 at MacRae Library,Faculty of Agriculture
A collective book launch for Professsors Cove, Hartt, Kevany and Stiles.  Each author will read and discuss briefly his/her book.  You can find more information here.

Exhibition Opening: Jamaican Nova Scotian Connections
Wednesday, February 5, 6:30– 8:30 p.m. | Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, 1055 Marginal Road
Enjoy presentations about the history of the Jamaican community in Nova Scotia, sample Jamaican food and hear musical performances. More information can be found here.

African Heritage Month:  Short Film Program
Thursday, February 6, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m. | Halifax Central Library, 5440 Spring Garden Road, Lindsay Children’s Room, Floor 2
Celebrate African Heritage month with these short films: Black Soul, by Martine Chartrand, Ice Breakers, by Sandi Rankaduwa, Black + Belonging, by Francesca Ekwuyasi and Black Mother Black Daughter, by Sylvia Hamilton and Claire Prieto. More detail can be found here.

Giant Bike – Hit the Deck
Saturday, February 8, 12:00 – 4:00 p.m. | Giant Bicycle, 5536 Sackville StreetHit The Deck is an outdoor cycling event to raise money for Phoenix Youth Programs in the community.  More information can be found here.

How can we help?

Call my office
Call my office for assistance with your municipal issues.  You can reach my Coordinator Lucille Walsh during the business day, her phone number is 902-490-2012 and her mail walshl@halifax.ca311 – HRM’s

Call Centre
HRM’s call centre is open 7 days a week, Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Saturday & Sunday 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. to respond to routine inquiries and complaints from HRM residents. Please use this service since it helps HRM keep track of issues that are of concern for residents (missed solid waste pickup, sidewalks not cleared, transit info or complaints, etc.) For more information please visit

Regional Council Reports and Agendas
If you want to read reports coming to Regional Council (posted mid-day Friday prior to the Tuesday meeting) or to check the agenda please go to:

Halifax and West Community Council Reports and Agendas
Community Council meets on Tuesday evenings that alternate with Regional Council. Please check the webpage here for agendas (usually available a week before the meeting), locations and times.

Peninsula Planning Advisory Council Reports and Agendas
Peninsula Planning Advisory Committee meets once a month to discuss and provide feedback to council on planning proposals for the three districts on the peninsula. Please check the webpage for agendas (usually available a week before the meeting), locations and times: