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  #1321  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 3:42 PM
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Keith P. Keith P. is offline
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Originally Posted by Summerville View Post
While it was a mess of hallways and stairs resulting from its repurpose from the theatre and the heat was either on or off,…it was built like a fortress. I recall hearing that the developer who bought it,…one of the Ramias…had difficulty tearing it down.

It would have been a beautiful set of lofts if someone had the inspiration to save it. The building that replaced it is probably ready to be torn down because it’s out of date and probably poorly built.
Agreed on all points. Again, I suspect today we would have seen a different outcome thanks to the changing economics and tastes of a growing number of those who are in the market for housing downtown. That strikes me as a pretty good area to live with lots of amenities nearby.
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  #1322  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 4:06 PM
Saul Goode Saul Goode is offline
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"The theatre had been converted into a 'War Room' with a giant map of the Atlantic Ocean and little stick pin flags and labels like in Dr. Strangelove. I wasn’t sure if that was an actual artifact (someone said the Battle of Atlantic was run from that room) or if it was a prop from a movie that was filmed there at one point, which I also heard."

It was very much an actual artifact. During WWII that building was the HQ for the RCAF's Eastern Air Command, which was responsible for command and coordination of all of the air force's operations in the western Atlantic, including anti-submarine patrol, home air defence, and pilot training. At its peak it controlled about two dozen ASW patrol, fighter, reconnaissance and training squadrons in NS (primarily at RCAF Dartmouth, later known as Shearwater) and in Newfoundland and eastern Quebec. In other words, it was a hugely important wartime strategic center. There was a ton of history in that old building.

Last edited by Saul Goode; Mar 6, 2022 at 6:00 PM.
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  #1323  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 4:11 PM
Dartguard Dartguard is offline
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Hi Folks, the building actually used to be the Headquarters for the Royal Canadian Air Forces long range Maritime patrol Forces. People in there used to coordinate the B 24 Mitchell patrols that would launch from Dartmouth(Shearwater), Yarmouth, St John's , Gander and Sydney during World War 2. After the War it continued to be the RCAF headquarters until the Demise of the RCAF in 1968. It became the the Canadian Forces Maritime Air command after that until that HQ moved to the Dockyard after the Martin cuts in the nineties. The Shearwater aviation museum has a replica Status board on display depicting a WW2 day in the life. Laptops do that now.
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  #1324  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 5:09 PM
Saul Goode Saul Goode is offline
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People in there used to coordinate the B 24 Mitchell patrols
Minor quibble: the B-24 was not the Mitchell - that was the B-25, a smaller twin-engine bomber. The B-24's name was Liberator. The USAAF called it the B-24; in the RAF and RCAF the LRP variant was officially designated Liberator GR VIII, though often colloquially still referred to as the B-24.
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  #1325  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 5:18 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Fascinating. You guys are a wealth of information!
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  #1326  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 5:40 PM
Saul Goode Saul Goode is offline
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Originally Posted by OldDartmouthMark View Post
Fascinating. You guys are a wealth of information!
Just an area of personal interest.
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  #1327  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 8:11 PM
Dartguard Dartguard is offline
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Originally Posted by OldDartmouthMark View Post
Fascinating. You guys are a wealth of information!
Yah, I am a geek.
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  #1328  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 8:13 PM
Dartguard Dartguard is offline
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Originally Posted by Saul Goode View Post
Minor quibble: the B-24 was not the Mitchell - that was the B-25, a smaller twin-engine bomber. The B-24's name was Liberator. The USAAF called it the B-24; in the RAF and RCAF the LRP variant was officially designated Liberator GR VIII, though often colloquially still referred to as the B-24.
Thanks for the clarification Saul.
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  #1329  
Old Posted Mar 6, 2022, 8:22 PM
Saul Goode Saul Goode is offline
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Thanks for the clarification Saul.
Didn't meant to sound pedantic or preachy; I'm a bit of an aviation geek - can't help myself sometimes.
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  #1330  
Old Posted Mar 7, 2022, 1:17 AM
Dartguard Dartguard is offline
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Originally Posted by Saul Goode View Post
Didn't meant to sound pedantic or preachy; I'm a bit of an aviation geek - can't help myself sometimes.
So am I, as an Air Force Brat it was in the house so to speak. Fascinating developments in Ukraine but that is not this forum.
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  #1331  
Old Posted Apr 21, 2022, 3:49 PM
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Not sure if this one's been posted before. A shot of the Ralston Building. Looks like the site of the Bank of Canada Building is being prepared:


http://shipfax.blogspot.com/2019/02/...new-owner.html

This one reminded me of the discussion about masonry buildings in Halifax. How many now-demolished masonry buildings are in this shot? What was the survival rate? It's remarkable how much this area changed from the photo to today, and not necessarily for the better. Not sure why this ended up being one of the most demolished areas.

I have a faint memory of some buildings on the current MetroPark footprint, but I don't remember if by the mid-late 90's they were the same as these ones visible in the photo.
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  #1332  
Old Posted Apr 22, 2022, 8:49 PM
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Hollis Street. I wonder if there are any other photos of the building on the right? It looks like 3 storey brick row housing. The Acadian Hotel survives, with an ugly modern mansard roof, as does the corner building on Morris on the left. I always thought that corner building looked quite stripped down and barely historic, even though it is a registered heritage building. I wonder what it looked like originally.

The gap by the Acadian Hotel is a small driveway and then there is a Georgian style house with a large setback next door. I wonder if that will ever be moved to the front of the lot, allowing for a rear addition.

I'd place 1226 Hollis, a duplex of non-registered brick Victorians, on death watch. I could see that being torn down for a redevelopment. Currently it has an unattractive storefront addition on one side.


Source
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  #1333  
Old Posted Apr 22, 2022, 11:18 PM
Drybrain Drybrain is offline
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I'd place 1226 Hollis, a duplex of non-registered brick Victorians, on death watch. I could see that being torn down for a redevelopment. Currently it has an unattractive storefront addition on one side.
I actually think this may be more likely as a restoration in the current development climate—it’s pegged as a contributing resource to the Old South Suburb conservation district, so there are more hoops to jump through for demolition, and it’s got a lot of space in the back that could be developed, including an unremarkable Waverley-esque addition that could be demolished to make room for a larger addition. Plus it appears to be in good shape, not decrepit. I’d be optimistic on this one.
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  #1334  
Old Posted Apr 22, 2022, 11:23 PM
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I actually think this may be more likely as a restoration in the current development climate—it’s pegged as a contributing resource to the Old South Suburb conservation district, so there are more hoops to jump through for demolition, and it’s got a lot of space in the back that could be developed, including an unremarkable Waverley-esque addition that could be demolished to make room for a larger addition. Plus it appears to be in good shape, not decrepit. I’d be optimistic on this one.
I hope these conservation districts do turn out to have teeth and the demolition of the remaining ~25% of the historic buildings around here stops. It is hard for me to tell from following the HRM documents and news.

It would be a positive to build in behind these buildings and move parking underground (or just have less parking). But the historic structures themselves should be enhanced. I also think it would make a big difference if there were a few new buildings constructed to look like the old ones in a high quality way, just to tilt the feel of this area back a bit.

Another one I worry about is 1360 Hollis. It could look great but it looks like a rental building the landlord is ignoring until it is one day torn down for a new building. Just like the one across the street that was torn down for Flynn Flats. Flynn Flats doesn't upset me much but it's the kind of thing that probably wouldn't have happened in a city with decent heritage district rules in place. The old building if restored with some nice wood siding, and its granite foundation, would have contributed to the character of the area. The two buildings in behind could have been turned into 4 storey wood facade apartment buildings.
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  #1335  
Old Posted Apr 23, 2022, 12:29 AM
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I’m also less worried about that one, though as always with a building of its age in so-so physical condition there’s concern about fires and the like. Mostly I just think it’s sort of embarrassing that late 18th century building of this scale and architectural accomplishment—not exactly a common sight in Canada—has been left in such a mediocre state.

But I do think a corner has been turned thanks to some of the more high-profile restorations and restoration proposals recently (Green Lantern, Waverley, apparently probably the Elmwood, etc.) and these aren’t really as likely to be picked off as they once were.

But there’s not really any room to build an addition here to finance a larger restoration, so the economic case for restoring this is probably trickier. But the heritage district and the general trend re: these structures also makes demolition less likely. I’d be thrilled to see a restoration/redevelopment proposal here.
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  #1336  
Old Posted Apr 23, 2022, 12:48 AM
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I’d be thrilled to see a restoration/redevelopment proposal here.
I think that's one where it makes sense for the city to pay a little money to help out with restoration, similar to the Barrington heritage funding. They are paying for the public benefit. Not sure what the state of the apartments inside is like. It does not seem like an appropriate candidate for adaptive reuse.

There's more development potential on the less built up sites of the brick houses along Barrington (Bearly's) and the small cluster on Hollis just before Morris. Some simple midrise apartments in behind with sympathetic styling (similar to the Waterfront but ideally better) would look good. I have heard that Killam has something planned.

Another one is the square 50's style apartment do-over one block down from Government House. A restoration of the house with infill in behind would look great. There are so many potential sites here and it could all coalesce into a great neighbourhood.
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  #1337  
Old Posted Apr 23, 2022, 5:21 PM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
Not sure if this one's been posted before. A shot of the Ralston Building. Looks like the site of the Bank of Canada Building is being prepared:


http://shipfax.blogspot.com/2019/02/...new-owner.html

This one reminded me of the discussion about masonry buildings in Halifax. How many now-demolished masonry buildings are in this shot? What was the survival rate? It's remarkable how much this area changed from the photo to today, and not necessarily for the better. Not sure why this ended up being one of the most demolished areas.

I have a faint memory of some buildings on the current MetroPark footprint, but I don't remember if by the mid-late 90's they were the same as these ones visible in the photo.
Great photo. I'm wondering if the site is being prepared for the BOC building, or just left vacant from the Queen Hotel fire of 1939? That said, the BOC building was completed around 1960 and the time frame of this photo seems consistent with that. Bonus vintage pic of the BOC building:

Source

There was a lot of loss in that area specifically, and anecdotally from reading reports from the era a lot of those buildings had been let go and were in somewhat poor shape (though in todays terms would be considered repairable for their heritage value). My understanding is that there was a mindset at the time that Halifax needed to revamp its business district with new buildings to bring commerce to the downtown.

Also, anecdotally, it's not clear from the photo how many of those buildings were wood construction vs masonry, but I don't suppose it's an important point, as the change from then to now is clear, and whether it's an improvement is up to debate (full disclosure: I don't think it's an improvement, but I know other posters here will).

It may surprise some forum members, but in my younger years I didn't have much interest in history or heritage structures. I liked the way they looked, mostly those from the 1860s through 1930s, roughly, but took Halifax's old building stock for granted and just figured it would mostly stick around, as nothing much seemed to be changing in Halifax at the time. As such, I never took a whole lot of notice of many of those buildings, though I do have a specific memory of some of the buildings being in rough shape and you could actually smell them when you walked by (like a sewage-y smell) - this was the 1980s when I would be walking back from University to take the ferry to Dartmouth. So... not much personal recall of what was there and when it was taken down - my mind was full of thoughts about the engineering of mechanical conveyances, and the other standard young-person thoughts at the time...
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  #1338  
Old Posted Apr 23, 2022, 6:17 PM
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This is an interesting building, occupying part of the site for the proposed Skye Halifax project:



It almost looks like it might have been an old hotel, but I have no idea.
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  #1339  
Old Posted Apr 24, 2022, 4:53 AM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Originally Posted by Keith P. View Post
This is an interesting building, occupying part of the site for the proposed Skye Halifax project:



It almost looks like it might have been an old hotel, but I have no idea.
Yeah, that is an interesting one. Sure would be nice to have a source of info about some of these old buildings. Looks like it might have been a hotel at one point, but then some of these buildings probably went through several iterations during their 'lifetime'.

The view you picked out would fill in a couple of spots in this compilation that I put together about 4 years ago, if I were ever to find the original ppt file, and have the motivation to re-do it.


Source and Source
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  #1340  
Old Posted Apr 24, 2022, 5:24 AM
OldDartmouthMark OldDartmouthMark is offline
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Originally Posted by someone123 View Post
Hollis Street. I wonder if there are any other photos of the building on the right? It looks like 3 storey brick row housing. The Acadian Hotel survives, with an ugly modern mansard roof, as does the corner building on Morris on the left. I always thought that corner building looked quite stripped down and barely historic, even though it is a registered heritage building. I wonder what it looked like originally.

The gap by the Acadian Hotel is a small driveway and then there is a Georgian style house with a large setback next door. I wonder if that will ever be moved to the front of the lot, allowing for a rear addition.

I'd place 1226 Hollis, a duplex of non-registered brick Victorians, on death watch. I could see that being torn down for a redevelopment. Currently it has an unattractive storefront addition on one side.


Source
Interesting shot. There are pics of the 'Georgian House' on the HRM archives of 14 (old system) or 1246 (current system) Hollis from 1962 at the link, showing the driveway and what appears to be a carriage house/external building behind the house: https://7046.sydneyplus.com/archive/...d-ebae51691d06

Don't have any info on the building to the right. The blocked off sign looks like it reads "Hollis Hotel" but that's just a guess. Also looks like there are brick storefronts added, but like many old buildings they probably lived several lives, likely being originally built as residential. I can only ever remember that section of the street being an empty lot, but as mentioned I didn't pay much attention to that stuff back when there could have been something there. Plus, as a kid living in Dartmouth, I didn't get to that section of Halifax very often.
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