Halifax regional council has unanimously voted to turn down the appeal of a handful of residents opposed to the Margaretta development on Dresden Row in the city's downtown.

The city's design review committee approved the nine-storey building proposed by WM Fares Group in early December. Four neighbours appealed the decision.

They questioned the completeness of a wind study, raised concerns about the building's compatibility with the heritage neighbourhood of Schmidtville, and suggested the installation of benches along Clyde Street would encourage noisy activity at night.

Planners told council the only matter that was in their mandate was the installation of the benches.

Coun. Waye Mason, who represents the area, says the design rules were adopted seven years ago and he had no interest in reopening them.

Also on Tuesday's council agenda

Another look at next year's budget is also on the Tuesday agenda.

Councillors had asked staff to look at adding three extra items: 

  • $300,000 to extend weekly green cart pickup until the end of September.
  • $1.2 million to extend weekly blue bag collection to the rural areas of the municipality.
  • $550,000 for increased honorariums for volunteer firefighters.

The CBC's Pam Berman live blogged from the meeting.

City staff say the items can't be added without affecting council's decision to keep the average tax bill the same as last year. So, they are recommending the items be referred to the 2017-18 budget process. 

Councillors will also consider a recommendation to ask the province for the power to suspend development for a year in the Barrington South District while a conservation zone is established.