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Action Taken by Halifax Regional Municipality to Prevent Infilling in the Northwest Arm

Halifax City Council approves amendments to bylaws to ensure stronger protections against infilling in pre-Confederation lots along the Northwest Arm

On January 9th, Halifax City Council unanimously approved changes to existing bylaws, solidifying restrictions on infilling for water lots along the Northwest Arm. While this is undoubtedly a positive development for the residents along the Northwest Arm, it does lead to consideration about the Dartmouth Cove infill proposal and the potential for similar protective measures in our community.


In November, Halifax City Council reviewed a staff report outlining support at the Federal level that would allow HRM more influence over the infilling of these pre-Confederation lots along the Northwest Arm. This support would grant HRM more influence over the infilling of pre-Confederation lots along the Northwest Arm, potentially allowing the municipality to have the final say—usually reserved for federal officials.


The amendments outline a promising path:


Justice Canada, on behalf of Transport Canada, recently indicated a willingness to recognize or otherwise permit a limited jurisdiction for the Municipality over infilling on the Northwest Arm. Staff of the Department has indicated a willingness to recommend to the Minister the issuance of conditional approvals under the CNWA over water lot infilling activities on the Northwest Arm. This approach would see Ministerial approvals require applicants to be compliant with the Municipality’s land use regulations. To date, the Department has only committed to a conditional approval process under the CNWA applying to water lot infilling activities over the Northwest Arm and not the other portions of Halifax Harbour.


The current amendment does not explicitly address whether similar action could be taken in Dartmouth Cove. However, the document underscores that feedback from community engagement, involving 108 individuals, has highlighted the question of whether this effort could extend to Dartmouth Cove.


To ensure that we continue to progress in the right direction, we need your active participation. Let us encourage the Federal Government to extend the same proposition they've made regarding the Northwest Arm to the pre-Confederation lots in Dartmouth Cove. MP Darrern Fisher has sent a letter to the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez outlining the importance of this issue to our community, but it's imperative we keep this issue top of mind.

Please continue to show your support by reaching out to the new Minister of Transportation, the Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, and our local MP Darren Fisher. Express your concern for Dartmouth Cove and urge them to extend the same proposition regarding the Northwest Arm to our beloved Cove. Please also ensure you stay engaged with local City Council members. City Councillor, Sam Austin for Dartmouth Centre and Mayor Mike Savage need to continue hearing from the community to keep this issue top of mind. Your engagement is crucial in ensuring that Dartmouth Cove receives the same consideration and cooperation as the Northwest Arm.


Thank you for your unwavering commitment to Dartmouth Cove.


Federal Contacts

The Honourable Pablo Rodriquez

House of Commons

Ottawa, Ontario,


K1A 0A6

Telephone: 613-995-0580



MP Darren Fisher

82 Tacoma Drive, Suite 200

Dartmouth NS

B2W 3E5

Sample Letter:

Dear Minister Pablo Rodriguez,

I hope this message finds you well. I am writing as a concerned member of the Dartmouth Cove community, seeking your assistance in safeguarding our beloved waterfront.

With the cooperation of your department, Halifax City Council was able to recently restrict infilling for pre-Confederation water lots along the Northwest Arm, a positive move for our neighbors. However, Dartmouth Cove, an essential part of our community, is not explicitly covered.

I kindly request your support in extending those same protective measures to Dartmouth Cove. Ensuring that approvals for infill applications for these pre-Confederation lots is dependent on approval from Halifax City Council.

Preserving Dartmouth Cove is vital for our community's well-being and marine activities. Your support would mean a great deal to us.

Thank you for considering our request, and I look forward to positive developments for Dartmouth Cove.


[Your Full Name]

[Your Contact Information]

[Your Address]

Halifax City Council Members

Dartmouth Centre

Sam Austin


Waverley-Fall River-Musquodoboit Valley

Cathy Deagle Gammon


Preston-Chezzetcook -Eastern Shore

David Hendsbee


Dartmouth South-Eastern Passage

Becky Kent


Cole Harbour-Westphal

Trish Purdy


Harbourview-Burnside-Dartmouth East

Tony Mancini


Peninsula South-Downtown

Waye Mason


Peninsula North

Lindell Smith


Armdale- Peninsula West

Shawn Cleary


Halifax-Bedford Basin West

Kathryn Morse


Timberlea-Beechville-Clayton Park West

Iona Stoddard


Hammonds Plains-St. Margaret's

Pam Lovelace


Middle & Upper Sackville- Lucasville

Lisa Blackburn


Lower Sackville

Paul Russell


Bedford- Wentworth

Tim Outhit


Mailing Address for all Councillors

PO Box 1749

Halifax Nova Scotia

B3J 3A5



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