To the editor,
The recent provincial government decision to convert prime retail space on Barrington Street to offices is neither right nor for the public good. It is dreadful to have a government that does not put the needs of its citizens, neighbours and community first.
When the Barrington Street Heritage District is put into place by HRM council in just a few months, the Municipal Planning Strategy, which currently recommends retail for the ground floor level on Barrington Street, will make it a requirement. Provincial government officials are aware they are sliding in before this change comes into effect. That senior politicians from our provincial government would act this way is unconscionable.
Halifax has a vibrant downtown and there is a wonderful, creative spirit embodied by many of the business owners who operate world-class restaurants, service and retail establishments at street level. The decision to change the space usage diminishes our efforts on a daily basis. They are willingly violating principles of urban design. The building they are in, once home to Eaton's, was always meant to have retail occupancy.
Every single day, as I walk by the street corner of Barrington and Prince, I will be reminded how the provincial government chose to ignore the municipal government's planning strategy for the province's capital city. I will be reminded of the total lack of regard that the provincial government and the Dept. of Transportation and Public Works has for the downtown in which it resides.
By Suzanne Saul, co-owner Attica Furnishings