News / Halifax

In Pictures: Final design plans for Nova Centre unveiled

Boasting a ‘green roof’, a ‘European streetscape’, and an Argyle Street absent a parking garage, the final design plans for the million square foot Nova Centre was unveiled on Wednesday night.

Sitting at the heart of the proposed $500 million mega-project is Grafton Street. The street will split the facility that spans two city blocks, and is expected to be the centre’s social magnet.

On Argyle Street the convention centre’s main entrance will be lined with plenty of shopping and retail space and sweeping staircases into the centre.

The sprawling centre will also boast a financial centre, luxury hotel, shops as well as two towering financial towers.

Besides raising the convention above ground, one of the major changes to the original design is the location of the parking garage on pedestrian friendly Argyle Street. The garage has been moved to a small slipway on Grafton Street, off of Prince Street, which developer Joe Ramia said will have little impact on pedestrian flow.

The top of the convention centre will feature a green, park space.

Photo Gallery

  • Design of the Nova Centre from Sackville and Grafton streets.

  • Jeff Harper/Metro

    Developer Joe Ramia shows final architect renderings of the Nova Centre project at the last public consolation session at Pier 21's Kenneth C. Rowe Heritage Hall on Wednesday night.

After 11 public consultations held across the province since July, Ramia said design plans for the project have completely changed.

“This is a better project today then what we started with,” he said. “The consultation process has been challenging at times but it has been very fruitful.”

The design team, including architects from Toronto-based IBI Group, were on hand to present the plans. The design hasn’t been finalized, including one of the two financial towers planned for the corner of Prince and Argyle streets.

“There’s an inside and outside that we have to get right,” IBI’s lead architect Jamie Wright said.

“It’s not only a space for a convention centre it’s actually part of the grain of the public realm and people that are passing through Grafton Street can stop there.”

The complete design will be submitted to the city for approval early in the new year.

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