Centre Plan Update – July 2017

On Tuesday, June 13, 2017, Regional Council unanimously approved the direction of the Centre Plan.

Now, staff are using the Centre Plan document to craft detailed Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use By-law regulations for adoption. Consultation on these regulations will take place in the Fall of 2017 to support the adoption process through the Community Design Advisory Committee, the Community Planning & Economic Development Standing Committee, and Regional Council.

What are the Next Steps for New Policy in the Regional Centre?

  • Public Review & Adoption of the Downtown Halifax Plan updates and Downtown Dartmouth Plan updates
  • Adoption of new Heritage Conservation Districts in Downtown Halifax
  • Consultation on Centre Plan Draft Regulations for Areas identified in Package “A” (see detail on packages and adoption here: https://www.halifax.ca/sites/default/files/documents/city-hall/regional-council/170613rc1421.pdf)
  • Adoption of Package “A”
  • Consultation on Centre Plan Draft Regulations for Areas identified in Package “B”
  • Adoption of Package “B”

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The Centre Plan document is the direct result of feedback received through a significant public engagement program, input and guidance from the Community Design Advisory Committee and Regional Council, and a strong commitment by the Planning and Development team to modernize development rules to reflect the vision citizens have for their communities. After the fall 2016 release of the Draft Centre Plan, improvements were made to the following policy directions and themes to respond to what the community said was most important to them:

  • Stronger protection for residential neighbourhoods, complete communities & heritage
  • Design requirements to minimize impact of new development on existing communities
  • Regulations to ensure balanced distribution of housing and population density
  • Priority on pedestrians
  • Access to parks & public amenities
  • Affordable housing
  • Stronger requirements for sustainable design & building practices
  • Regulations that will enable a strong economy

The Centre Plan document will now be reviewed by the Community Design Advisory Committee, the Community Planning & Economic Development Standing Committee, and Regional Council.

If the Centre Plan direction is authorized, staff will proceed with the implementation phase by finalizing detailed policies, land use by-law regulations, and required amendments to other Secondary Municipal Planning Strategy and Land Use By-law documents.

The goal of the Centre Plan is to create complete communities that meet the needs of a diverse population while accommodating growth in a strategic manner.

The Centre Plan seeks to maintain and create vibrant places and enhance quality of life. The Regional Centre will accommodate strategic growth, foster complete communities with access to multiple services and attractions, and place pedestrians first in a human scaled environment. Achieving a great Regional Centre requires that attention is paid to all four of these interconnected and mutually supportive components.

The Centre Plan will guide the development, use, and form of the Regional Centre. The Regional Plan identifies the Regional Centre as a desirable location for future growth. The Centre Plan is needed to accommodate this growth by serving as a development blueprint for the additional homes, businesses, and amenities that a growing population requires, in a sustainable and locally appropriate manner.

Updated July 13, 2017

Input from thousands of stakeholders including residents, business owners and developers have directly influenced the Centre Plan. The project team undertook in-depth and thoughtful analysis of feedback received during each phase of the public engagement to make the Plan stronger.

Arriving at this milestone of the Centre Plan project is a shared achievement; thank you for your remarkable contributions to this project to ensure we are building better communities.

Learn more about the Engagement process:

Community Engagement Strategy Progress Report
What We Heard Report - Draft Plan
Open Houses and Workshops 

View some of the Community Conversations and PLANifax’s video series explaining what the Centre Plan is all about.



The Centre Plan will be reviewed and adopted in phases throughout 2017, starting in March. Committee and Council meetings are open to the public and we encourage you to join us at these meetings to follow the Centre Plan through its adoption process Meeting dates will be updated here regularly as they are confirmed.



Launch Open House
Neighbourhood Workshops
Growth Scenarios Open House
Stakeholder Meetings
Pop-Up Events


Authorize direction of the Centre Plan
Adoption of the Downtown Halifax & Downtown Dartmouth Plans
Adoption of the Old South Suburb & Schmidtville Heritage Conservation Districts
Drafting of Centre Plan Regulations
Consultation on Centre Plan Draft Regulations
Phased approval of Centre Plan policies, regulations & amendments to other regulatory documents


Approval by the Province

To contact us directly, email planHRM@halifax.ca