Nova Scotia

All of NSCAD University moving to the Halifax Seaport

The school currently currently runs three campus sites throughout the downtown, including one that is already at the Halifax Seaport. It's not clear what will happen to the other two sites, but the move must be complete by 2030 so the school can be fully accessible.

Move will make the campus fully accessible, as required by provincial law by 2030

An artist's rendering of what the entrance to NSCAD University will look like at the Halifax Seaport after redevelopment. (NSCAD University)

All of NSCAD University is moving to the Halifax Seaport in the next seven years so that the school will be fully accessible by 2030, as required by the Nova Scotia government.

On Tuesday, NSCAD — which has three distinct campuses in downtown Halifax — announced it signed a long-term agreement with the Halifax Port Authority "to create an accessible, unified campus that will be the cornerstone of the vibrant creative and social district at the Halifax Seaport."

"I just believe NSCAD deserves to be all together," Peggy Shannon, president of NSCAD University, told CBC News. "So while this is going to take a long time, I'm excited because it's on the port, it's beautiful."

NSCAD University, formerly known as the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, already has one of its three campuses located at the Halifax Seaport.

It's not clear what will happen to the other two downtown Halifax sites, but a spokesperson for the university told CBC News in an email there is no rush to make a decision. 

"Of course, everything must be complete by 2030 when provincial legislation will require all public buildings to be fully accessible," the university explained on a section of its website dedicated to the moving project.

Making buildings accessible generally includes entrance ramps, power-assisted doors, elevators and larger washroom stalls to accommodate wheelchairs and other mobility aids.

Peggy Shannon, the president of NSCAD University, at the announcement for NSCAD's move to the Halifax Seaport on Tuesday. (CBC)

The new leased spaces at Shed 22 and 23 will add approximately 100,000 square feet to NSCAD's existing footprint at Port Campus, the university said in the news release. The cost of the lease has not been disclosed.

Shannon said the next step will be a call for proposals, then finding a design and construction team. She estimated construction would begin in five years and the move would be complete in seven years.

"As people arrive in Halifax by water and they pull in, we will be one of the first things representing this beautiful city. They'll see NSCAD. And I think that's so unbelievably exciting," Shannon said.

Aerial view of the Halifax Seaport which highlights NSCAD University's existing port campus and the location of the school's newly leased buildings. (NSCAD University)

With files from Anam Khan

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