The roads and ramps that make up the Cogswell Interchange were constructed in the 1960s. ((CBC))

The move to replace the tangled roadways that make up the Cogswell Interchange is underway.

Halifax regional council agreed Tuesday to immediately look for a consultant to design a master plan for the network of concrete roads and ramps in downtown Halifax.

Coun. Dawn Sloane, who represents the area, is eager to see new streets and buildings on the 13-acre site.

"We have to look at this as a gateway to our downtown. It's going to be something that's going to make us all proud," Sloane said.

The interchange was built in the 1960s as part of a plan for a harbourfront expressway. A public uproar ensued and that plan was eventually scrapped.

The redevelopment of the Cogswell Interchange was a key part of the HRM by Design process.

Municipal planning staff said the development of a master plan will spell out how the ramps should come down, what should replace them, and how long the process should take.

But Coun. Sue Uteck is suspicious of the timing of the process, and pushed for a three-week delay.

Last December, council decided in a closed-door meeting that the Cogswell Interchange land should be disqualified as a possible site for a new convention centre.

"I just want council to understand all the implications that you're doing because I firmly believe they firmly had an absence of information in December," Uteck said.

In addition, the final details of new design rules for downtown Halifax will be released next week, she noted.

Regional staff expect the master plan for the Cogswell Interchange to be ready in about a year.

In the meantime, municipal staff estimate there is about $435,000 in maintenance work to do over a six- to eight-month period.