An invitation from Shape Our City Halifax has just been issued to “to share your feedback on the draft policies, development agreement and submitted plans” related to the Southdale Future Growth Node which includes the ‘Eisner Cove Wetland’.
Feedback is to be submitted via simple one-box form by Monday September 19, 2022.
The “draft policies, development agreement and submitted plans” can be accessed via this webpage: Case 23820: Southdale Future Growth Node Planning Process
Tree-clearing at the Southdale site began in early August, so it’s not clear what decisions about the development yet to be taken might be modified by public input.
As readers are probably aware, there have been some hitches along the way in the form of growing protests, appeals, and an industrial site incident.
On July 29, 2022, Bill Zebedee, a local resident and President of the Protect Eisner Cove Wetland group, submitted a formal appeal of a plan to construct a causeway across the wetland. That resulted in cessation of wetland alteration activities, but not of tree-cutting in the nearby uplands, while the appeal is being considered. Following a worksite incident involving a confrontation between tree-cutting machinery operators and protestors in mid-August, tree-cutting was also halted, but we don’t know for how long,
On Aug 24, 2022, David Patriquin wrote a lengthy letter on behalf of the NS Wild Flora Society and the Halifax Field Naturalists to the Premier, the Ministers of Housing and Environment, our Halifax Mayor, Regional Councillors and Kevin Neatt at Clayton Developments in support of Bill Zebedee’s Appeal of the Wetland Alteration Approval:
An Open Letter in support of William Zebedee’s Appeal of Wetland Alteration Approval No 2021-2886385-00 (22-07-29): Can we all take a sober second look at the Southdale Future Growth Node?
The 21 page letter, with 12 pages of maps and photos in an Appendix, comments on some significant errors and omissions in the LSA (Landscape Suitability Analysis) for the development, provides some explanation of why this site was not identified as providing significant habitat and wildlife connectivity in the HGNP (Halifax Green Network Plan) and appeals to the key decision-makers to pause and take a serious second at the whole project.
For some further background and information about the natural history of the area, view a set of pages on the NS Wild Flora Society website:
Eisner’s Cove Wetland
– The Wet Upland Forest
– Field Trip 22May2017 Notes
– Letter 24Aug2022
For more about the history of the site, the development and citizen concerns, view the Protect Eisner Cove Wetland group Website and Facebook Page
If you are concerned about this project proceeding, please make your views known to HRM and the Province via the form above; you might also copy your comments to your HRM Councillor and MLA.
More photos posted here