Granville Mall Feasibility Study

2010

Client: HRM Cultural Affairs

In March 2010, the Cities & Environment Unit developed a concept plan for an innovative arts space on the historic Granville Mall. This nationally registered historic block, which is one block from the Halifax waterfront, was investigated from various perspectives including: stakeholder concerns, economic stimulus, tourism potential, and existing or potential arts programming. Various methods were employed to generate a comprehensive study. Key considerations included successful case studies, economic realities and public workshops. The final designs for the arts and cultural space reflected a comprehensive and community-based approach to develop an exciting and unique design for the Halifax Regional Municipality.

Key stakeholders were invited to community design charrettes where background information was presented and preliminary concept plans for the project were developed. Other key stakeholders were interviewed one-on-one to determine an accurate list of risks and opportunities for the project. CEU used a collaborative process throughout the project working with local stakeholders and the client to develop a vision for the area that reflected the goals for the space.

The resulting design proposal incorporates the program requirements as defined by the areas existing and potential users and a long-term vision to transform the area. The concept plan emphasizes the accommodation of public arts and performances, while providing an inviting public space for users on a day-to-day basis. The concept imagines the Mall as an intimate space framed by historic facades on either side. This dynamic space will showcase and inspire the arts and culture of Halifax and Nova Scotia. Although this concept plan is oriented toward public art installations, exhibitions, and projections the space is flexible enough that it can be adapted in many different ways to serve different performance groups locally, regionally, and internationally.