Province, Imagine Bloomfield Partner to Bring Vision to Life

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The province and Imagine Bloomfield will establish a joint working group to identify areas for collaboration, including public engagement.

"We recognize Imagine Bloomfield for the tremendous work they've done over the last number of years," said Denise Peterson-Rafuse, minister responsible for the Nova Scotia Housing Development Corporation. "Imagine Bloomfield is most familiar with the community's needs and aspirations, and the project will benefit significantly from having them at the table from the start.

"We've helped to develop and nurture the vision for Bloomfield since 2003," said Natalie Chavarie, co-chair of Imagine Bloomfield. "We are excited to be an integral part of the next stages by assisting in public engagement, ensuring that our members and participants in the April 2012 needs assessment are part of the process and in long-term collaboration on the site. This is a very important project and the community has waited a long time to get to this stage."

Bloomfield school and community centre have been an important part of public life in Halifax since the 1860s. After almost 10 years of work by Imagine Bloomfield to engage the community and create a vision for the property, Halifax Regional Municipality Council recently endorsed the Nova Scotia Housing Development Corporation (NSHDC) bid to redevelop the site. The project means the municipality is one step closer to having a unique, mixed-use, mixed-income development, a first for the province and a model for future developments.

"The Bloomfield project will be a prime example of the social impact that successful collaboration between community, private and public partners can have," said Ms. Peterson-Rafuse. "This is in line with the vision we have put forward during the public consultation on the first provincial housing strategy."

The proposal submitted by the province reflects the elements of the Bloomfield Master Plan envisioned by the community and will include affordable, accessible and sustainable housing as well as community, cultural and commercial space. It is a mixed-use design that includes lofts, one, two and three-bedroom apartments, and townhouses, alongside community, cultural, and commercial space.