Multimillion-dollar project causing headaches for Halifax waterfront businesses
Published Sunday, May 14, 2017 3:41PM ADT
A massive real estate project has essentially cut the Halifax waterfront in half. And with tourism season about to get underway, people who do business on the waterfront are concerned.
The $200-million project cuts right through the boardwalk.
“There really is a flow (on the boardwalk), whether it's to the casino or the ferry terminal. It's really going to stop people from walking here,” says resident Vernon MacNeil.
The Queen’s Marque will look much different once complete, but that won't be until 2019. The group that manages the waterfront is installing a floating bridge to restore access to the boardwalk.
“It effectively becomes a continuous boardwalk again, even during construction,” says Jennifer Angel, acting CEO of Waterfront Development.
Tour operator Dennis Campbell's restaurant and gift shop sits beside the development. He says last year was their best season, but doesn't mind the timing of the construction.
“We are excited about what's going to be at the end result,” Campbell says. “If there is any downturn during construction, which there typically is, will be offset by the higher numbers.”
Campbell’s company has had to move its tour boats further down the waterfront. He’s also purchased a trolley to help move pedestrians along the boardwalk.
“It's going to be a service seven days a week from June 1 going to the end of October, going from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m. It's very unique, very novel,” Campbell says.
With construction well underway, tour operators are rolling out the welcome mat, hoping to still entice visitors downtown.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Kelland Sundahl.