Media release

Media release: Elect HRM representatives who are friends of the Common

Media Advisory

For immediate release

October 13, 2020

(Halifax/Ki’jipuk) Friends of Halifax Common has released the responses for its 6-question survey sent to all electoral candidates to measure their level of support for:

  • Legislative protection of the Halifax Common;
  • Reversing proposals for four 16, 26, 28, 29-storey towers on the South Common at Carlton, College, Robie, Spring Garden Road;
  • Increasing green space on the Halifax Peninsula and in HRM;
  • Increasing access for amateur players on the effectively privatized Wanderer’s Grounds;
  • Opposing the Province’s plans for an 8-storey 500 stall parking garage (north of NS Museum) and a 1000-stall parking garage (former CBC-TV site) on the Central Common;
  • the 1994 Halifax Common Master Plan especially as it relates to the new Halifax Common Master Plan 

One-third of candidates responded and based on their answers FHC has endorsed certain candidates: 

  • Mayoralty Candidate: Max Taylor answered as a true friend of the common.
  • District 7: Jen Powley would be a best friend of the Common! Especially compared to incumbent Waye Mason. During his two terms of office Councillor Mason has supported 16, 26, 28 & 29 storey highrises at Robie and Spring Garden Rd; the Centre Plan Corridors that will create incentives for thousands of affordable housing units to be destroyed-especially along the perimeter of the Common; and voted to support the parking garages on the Central Common instead of leading the council charge to have the province find real, doable alternative transportation solutions. To get to the heart of the matter please read and compare Powley and Mason’s responses!
  • District 8: Virginia Hinch has given informed, open and very thoughtful answers. This is a sharp contrast to Lindell Smith who did not reply but whose actions have been very disappointing—ie. his 2019 motion for a Development Agreement to begin for a 23-storey high-rise on Danny Chedrawe’s Cruickshanks property on Robie Street next to the 25-storey Willow Tree tower. This motion was against HRM staff report and broke the Centre Plan. It will further degrade the public’s experience on the North Common with more wind, shadow and traffic. As well Lindell did not intervene on behalf of the 800+ citizens who wanted St Pat’s retained for pubic purpose, or Imagine Bloomfield citizens-both properties have been sold to private developers for private profit.
  • District 9: Bill Carr, Shaun Clark and Gerry Lonergan all give excellent Common-positive responses. Gerry is a Quinpool Road business owner and a resident well-placed to understand the district; Bill is a long-standing independent actor, motivational speaker, engaged citizen and satirist (that can’t hurt); active citizen Shaun is a stay-at-home-parent who lives with a disability so “gets it” on changes we need. Please do your own research here. Incumbent Shawn Cleary’s responses confirm FHC’s direct experience that he is not a friend of the Common. An early example is his betrayal of citizens with his support for George Armoyan’s 25-storey high-rise at the Willow Tree. Subsequent encounters definitely indicate there’s lots off beat in his vision for the heart of Halifax.

NO RESPONSE was received from 50% of sitting councillors and the mayor.: Mayor Savage, Steve Stretch (District 1), Sam Austin (District 5), Tony Mancini (District 6), Lindell Smith (District 8), Richard Zurawski (District 12), Lisa Blackburn (District 14), Paul Russell (District 15) and Tim Outhit (District 16).

FHC wonders if the lack of interest on the part of these elected officials who have made many decisions against the best interests of the Common is the reason it continues to be so ignored or harmed? 

We encourage you to visit our site and read the survey responses Then vote for those who are a friend of the Halifax Common.