Halifax Convention Centre Opening Delayed

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The opening date of the Halifax Convention Centre has been pushed from January 2016 until September 2016. Public consultation and weather have been the main factors that are putting the development off schedule. As a result, 17 events will be impacted by the delayed opening date and will have to find a new venue. The official grand opening is now scheduled for January 2017.

Source – http://bit.ly/1w0QEq2


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N.S., P.E.I. Sign New 811 Agreement

Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island are strengthening 811 service and saving money by signing a new contract with McKesson Canada.

Under the contract, McKesson Canada's team of registered nurses will continue to provide health-care advice by phone to residents of Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island until March 2019.

In the first 16 months of the contract, Nova Scotians will save more than $700,000. Based on projected call volumes, the cost of providing 811 service will be about $43 per patient.

In the coming months, the contract will also include helpline support in Nova Scotia for those who want to stop smoking. McKesson already provides helpline support for those harmed by problem gambling, and that support is also included in this contract.

"We all need health advice we can trust. New parents, people in rural areas, seniors or anyone who needs health advice in another language can benefit from our 811 service," said Health and Wellness Minister Leo Glavine.

Over the life of the contract, it will cost Nova Scotians about $30 million, based on patient volumes. As part of the contract, a program review will take place in the first year.

P.E.I. will continue to pay costs associated with its residents' use of the service.

"I am extremely pleased to have the 811 service available on Prince Edward Island," said Health and Wellness Minister Doug Currie.

"811 provides callers with evidence-based, reliable information, allowing them to make informed decisions regarding their health."

Last year, 811 registered nurses helped more than 120,000 Nova Scotians with advice about everything from abdominal and chest pain to rashes, coughs, nausea and vomiting.

The service is available around the clock, in over 120 languages.

In Nova Scotia, problem gambling support can be accessed by calling 1-888-347-8888. Smokers who want to quit can call 1-877-513-5333.


Source: Release
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Nova Centre Project Update Shared

Joe Ramia of Argyle Developments Inc. provided an update today, Nov. 28, on the Nova Centre development, including the Halifax Convention Centre.

Argyle Developments Inc. unveiled final floor plans for the convention centre. The new convention centre will feature 120,000 square feet of event space, including two distinct convention levels and a mix of multi-purpose, meeting and ballroom space.

"We're honoured to lead a project that will help to position Nova Scotia on the global stage," said Joe Ramia, president of Argyle Developments Inc. "Construction is well underway, and I am excited about having the final floor plans for a facility that will add vibrancy, business and tourism to our region. This is where Nova Scotians and visitors will connect."

Mr. Ramia also announced a revised substantial completion date, Sept. 30, 2016, for the Nova Centre, with an official opening for the Halifax Convention Centre planned for January 2017. He explained the updated construction schedule and revised substantial completion date are because of design enhancements, after extensive public consultation, and the approval processes, as well as challenging weather during last winter's construction season.

Scott Ferguson, president and CEO of Trade Centre Ltd., also spoke at the event, highlighting the opportunity the development presents to attract new events, generate new business and contribute to the Nova Scotia economy.

"We continue to see strong interest from national and international clients in choosing Nova Scotia and the new convention centre to host their events," said Mr. Ferguson. "We will now focus our efforts on securing business for January 2017 and beyond."

Trade Centre Ltd. confirmed that 30 events have been secured for the new Halifax Convention Centre, 17 of which are for 2016 that are affected by the updated construction schedule. Clients have been notified and will work with Trade Centre Ltd. to discuss options for 2017 and beyond.

Mr. Ferguson noted public consultation and design collaboration have led to many enhancements to the space, including another level of meeting rooms and the Argyle Street level suite.
Argyle Developments has committed to regular updates and ongoing collaboration with project partners to ensure progress continues as scheduled.

The Nova Centre is the largest integrated development project yet in the province's history, which includes the state-of-the-art Halifax Convention Centre, an adjoining hotel, financial tower and retail space.

The funding of the new convention centre is shared among three levels of government, totalling $164.2 million.


Source: Release
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Black Friday Week flyer deals

Black Friday/ Cyber Monday sale madness has begun early. I am off to visit my family, might only be able to catch the tail end of it but hope you all have fun shopping :)

Locally, Halifax Shopping Center has their annual Big Black Bow event
- Friday (8-10): mini makeovers at Sephora/ mini spa treatments at The Body Shop, chocolate tasting, free swag bag (while supplies last), prizes with $100 purchase (receipt as proof), etc.
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Government Responds to Private Soil Tests

A review of testing results of soil samples taken in Boat Harbour, Pictou Co., shows the levels of mercury and most other chemicals are within acceptable limits.

The Clean the Mill Group commissioned testing of the soil and shared a report on the results with government on Nov. 6. Staff at the departments of Health and Wellness and Environment reviewed the report's findings in relation to recognized guidelines and shared their analysis with the group today, Nov. 28.

"We understand that area residents are concerned about the impact of heavy industry on their environment and their health," said Dr. Ryan Sommers, medical officer of health for the Pictou County Health Authority. "For the majority of soil samples, the levels of chemicals are below the accepted provincial, national and international guidelines for industrial, residential and agricultural use."

The Department of Environment and Canadian Council of Ministers of the Environment set guidelines and standards for most of the chemicals noted in the Clean the Mill Group report. Those not covered by Canadian guidelines do not exceed limits set by the World Health Organization or the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry in the United States.

Two of the seven sample sites indicated levels of arsenic that were marginally higher than the Canadian guideline limits, and three had marginally higher levels of barium. Both chemicals were within Nova Scotia's Environmental Quality Standards. Potential risks from these amounts would be extremely low.

Because of the geological differences across the country, provincial standards may differ from national guidelines. It is normal to find trace amounts of some chemicals in soils across Nova Scotia, as many of these are found naturally here.

A single salt water sample was collected and analyzed for the Clean the Mill Group as well. For many of the chemicals, there is no guideline limit for marine waters. Many chemicals were not detected in the samples, while others, such as calcium and magnesium, were detected at high levels. Calcium and magnesium are common earth elements and pose no health risks. The Department of Environment has shared the report with Environment Canada.


Source: Release
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Improved Bike Accessibility at Alderney Ferry Terminal

Work to improve bike accessibility at the Alderney Ferry Terminal in Dartmouth is now complete.

Halifax Regional Municipality installed a bike-fixing station, new bike racks, a security camera and motion-activated doors at the ferry terminal. In addition, a path was paved to connect the terminal to the Dartmouth Waterfront Greenway Trail.

"The Alderney Ferry Terminal is such a pivotal point for everyday travel. These improvements will help encourage more people to consider taking their bikes on the ferry when they need to get across the harbour," said Andrew Younger, Minister of Energy, today, Nov. 28.

"It’s another good example of the results that can come from partnership and from a desire for more sustainable transportation options."

Through the Sustainable Transportation Strategy, government contributed $10,000 last year to the project. At that time, 12 successful applicants around in Halifax Regional Municipality were awarded grants totalling $570,976.

"Improving bike facilities in our region is an important step towards making cycling an attractive transportation option for residents," said Gloria McCluskey, municipal councillor for Dartmouth Centre. "This project in particular will help residents combine cycling and public transit on their daily commute, and further reduce traffic congestion on our already busy streets."

Improvements to the Alderney Ferry Terminal come in time to accommodate potentially heavier cyclist traffic on the ferry, as the MacDonald bridge bike lane will be closing in June until the end of 2016.

For more information on government's Sustainable Transportation Strategy, visit www.novascotia.ca/sustainabletransportation .


Source: Release
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Bridgetown Closer to New Governance Structure

The provincial government has reached an agreement with the Town of Bridgetown and the Municipality of the County of Annapolis supporting infrastructure, operating and capital investments for roads, and transitional costs associated with dissolution.

The agreement provides $2.5 million over five years to help transition the Town of Bridgetown to a new governance structure.

Equalization funding for the combined municipality will be frozen for five years at the level currently paid to the town and municipality.

The details are in a joint letter of intent that will be presented as evidence at the hearing Monday, Dec. 1, with the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board.

In May, Bridgetown applied to the review board to dissolve. Transition co-ordinator Allister Surette worked with town, county and provincial representatives to reach an agreement to transition Bridgetown to a new municipal government structure that is in the best interests of residents.

Government supported the transition work by providing funds for reports and research.

If approved by the review board, the new municipal structure will take effect April 1.


Source: Release
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Students, Government Celebrate We Day Atlantic Canada

Thousands of students committed to positive change from Atlantic Canada came to Halifax today, Nov. 28, for Free the Children's We Day Atlantic Canada.

We Day is an educational event that celebrates the power of young people to create positive change in their communities and around the world. The event brings together student leaders who are volunteering and working to make a difference.

"We Day Atlantic Canada brings our young student leaders together to celebrate their accomplishments and empowers them to continue making Canada and the world a better place," said Education and Early Childhood Development Minister Karen Casey. "These students are driving positive change in their local communities and around the globe, and today is their day."

We Day is part of a year-long program called We Act that gives educators resources to help bring social justice issues into the classroom and to encourage students to get involved in issues they feel passionate about.

To support the message of civic engagement and global citizenship provided by We Day and We Act, the Government of Nova Scotia provided a contribution to the international charitable organization Free the Children.

For more information on We Day, visit www.weday.com .     


Source: Release
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Nova Scotian Has Chance to Bring Skills to the World Stage

Ryan Leedham of Brookfield is competing for a spot on Team Canada at the upcoming WorldSkills competition in Sao Paulo, Brazil, next year.

Mr. Leedham, a graduate of the Nova Scotia Community College Aviation Institute in Dartmouth, received a gold medal in aircraft maintenance at the Skills Canada National Competition in June.

"I certainly didn't expect to win going into the competition. I had a lot of help from my coach and instructors," he said.

While Mr. Leedham remains modest, his mentor and trainer, Todd Lintaman, could not be more confident in his ability.

"I've never met a 20-year-old like him. Ryan is talented and wise beyond his years. His attention to detail, work ethic and discipline are like nothing I've seen before. If we could clone Ryan, we would."

He will complete his trials in January in the hopes of becoming a member of Team Canada.

Ryan was one of 41 students and apprentices of Team Nova Scotia who were recognized at the Skills Excellence Awards today, Nov. 28, for their success at the national competition. They won 12 medals in 10 categories, including two gold.

Minister of Labour and Advanced Education Kelly Regan congratulated him and the other medal recipients.

"Your talent and skills will go far beyond this competition," said Ms. Regan. "It's your hard work and determination that will lead this province forward. And your skills will translate to greater opportunities for you here in Nova Scotia. This is just the beginning."


Source: Release
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Let’s Discover: Rad Science

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Science is totally Rad and most of the sports and activities that we enjoy on an everyday basis are grounded in scientific principle. Our new Tony Hawk | Rad Science Exhibit highlights how physics and skateboarding are closely connected.

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Rolling Street Closures - Spryfield Santa Claus Parade

Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014 (Halifax, NS) – The Halifax Regional Municipality is advising residents that there will be some minor traffic delays and rolling street closures in the Spryfield area on Sunday, Nov. 30, as the Spryfield Santa Claus Parade moves through the community.

The parade starts at 2 p.m. on Punch Bowl Drive, heads south along Herring Cove Road, then west on Dentith Road, ending at Spryfield Mall. The affected streets will temporarily close to traffic as the parade moves through. Halifax Regional Police will be on site to help direct traffic. The event is expected to wrap up by 3 p.m.

Following the parade, the community is invited to attend the local Christmas tree lighting at the Captain William Spry Community Centre, 16 Sussex St. For more information on these events, please visit the Spryfield & District Business Commission Facebook page.


Source: Release
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Traffic & Parking Advisory - We Day 2014

Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014 (Halifax, NS) – The Halifax Regional Municipality is advising residents that there will be heavy traffic and limited street parking in downtown Halifax on Friday morning, as more than 150 school buses will be dropping off students taking part in We Day 2014.

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Construction progress on The Plaza retail addition

Construction on the commercial additions to The Plaza, Scotia and MacKeen apartments on Brunswick St are moving along quickly. This project kicked off earlier this year when the Citadel Hotel redevelopment across the street was wrapping up. Once this is complete there will be many retail/commercial options on this stretch of Brunswick St. between Cogswell and Duke.

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