Water Street Enhancements

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Project Background

Water Street is among Halifax’s most prominent and historic streets. It plays a key role in the regional roadway network and acts as a focal point for civic events (e.g., Halifax Busker Festival), culture, and tourism. It is an important multimodal transportation corridor that serves multiple Halifax Transit bus routes, is a designated bicycle route, and serves as the primary northbound route for trucks departing the South End Container Terminal and moving through downtown Halifax.


What is Happening?

The Halifax Regional Municipality is planning on making changes to Water Street, from Terminal Road to Historic Properties. This project will develop a long-term vision for the corridor that will inform how it is reinstated as part of future street recapitalization projects as well as any development projects.







Why is this Project Happening?

Recent plans and policies make clear HRM’s intent to continue to invest in Water Street as a key component of the regional transportation network:

  • Water Street is an important Pedestrian Corridor, seeing considerable pedestrian activity including tourists exploring downtown Halifax, commuters accessing the harbour ferries, and downtown residents and workers going about their daily activities.
  • It’s designated as an “All Ages and Abilities (AAA)” Bicycle Route in the Downtown Bikeway Plan.
  • It's also designated as a 'Transit Priority Corridor' in the municipality's Integrated Mobility Plan (IMP) and Halifax Transit's Moving Forward Together Plan (MFTP).
  • Water Street has seen significant development activity as residential densification of downtown Halifax has rapidly increased. Development intensification introduces new mobility demands to the street that need to be considered, but also provides opportunities to integrate street improvements into development-related street reinstatement, providing cost synergies and reducing construction disruption.

As a signature street in downtown Halifax, Water Street presents many exciting opportunities. However, given the many demands on the street, planning for its future presents some challenges. This project will look at developing design options for the Water Street corridor that balance multimodal demands. This includes improving the accommodation of modes that are currently underserved while maintaining adequate operations for those that are served well.


Did You Know?

  • Approximately 4,900 vehicles per day travel on Water Street.
  • Up to 5,000 pedestrians walk/roll on Water Street during the warm summer months.
  • About 50,000 tourists visit Water Street every year.
  • Downtown Halifax is home to over 25,000 residents. It’s also the fastest-growing downtown in Canada, growing by 26.1% since 2016.
  • There are about 1,600 businesses in downtown Halifax.
  • People that live in downtown Halifax have the highest sustainable commuting mode share in HRM. Based on the 2016 Census:
    1. 59% walk to work
    2. 2% use a bicycle to go to work
    3. 14% take transit to go to work
    4. 24% use a vehicle (as a driver and passenger) to get to work

Learn More:

Want to learn more about the Water Street Enhancements project? We encourage you to:


Thanks to everyone who took the time to respond to the survey. Your input will help shape the future of Water Street. The survey is now closed.



Project Background

Water Street is among Halifax’s most prominent and historic streets. It plays a key role in the regional roadway network and acts as a focal point for civic events (e.g., Halifax Busker Festival), culture, and tourism. It is an important multimodal transportation corridor that serves multiple Halifax Transit bus routes, is a designated bicycle route, and serves as the primary northbound route for trucks departing the South End Container Terminal and moving through downtown Halifax.


What is Happening?

The Halifax Regional Municipality is planning on making changes to Water Street, from Terminal Road to Historic Properties. This project will develop a long-term vision for the corridor that will inform how it is reinstated as part of future street recapitalization projects as well as any development projects.







Why is this Project Happening?

Recent plans and policies make clear HRM’s intent to continue to invest in Water Street as a key component of the regional transportation network:

  • Water Street is an important Pedestrian Corridor, seeing considerable pedestrian activity including tourists exploring downtown Halifax, commuters accessing the harbour ferries, and downtown residents and workers going about their daily activities.
  • It’s designated as an “All Ages and Abilities (AAA)” Bicycle Route in the Downtown Bikeway Plan.
  • It's also designated as a 'Transit Priority Corridor' in the municipality's Integrated Mobility Plan (IMP) and Halifax Transit's Moving Forward Together Plan (MFTP).
  • Water Street has seen significant development activity as residential densification of downtown Halifax has rapidly increased. Development intensification introduces new mobility demands to the street that need to be considered, but also provides opportunities to integrate street improvements into development-related street reinstatement, providing cost synergies and reducing construction disruption.

As a signature street in downtown Halifax, Water Street presents many exciting opportunities. However, given the many demands on the street, planning for its future presents some challenges. This project will look at developing design options for the Water Street corridor that balance multimodal demands. This includes improving the accommodation of modes that are currently underserved while maintaining adequate operations for those that are served well.


Did You Know?

  • Approximately 4,900 vehicles per day travel on Water Street.
  • Up to 5,000 pedestrians walk/roll on Water Street during the warm summer months.
  • About 50,000 tourists visit Water Street every year.
  • Downtown Halifax is home to over 25,000 residents. It’s also the fastest-growing downtown in Canada, growing by 26.1% since 2016.
  • There are about 1,600 businesses in downtown Halifax.
  • People that live in downtown Halifax have the highest sustainable commuting mode share in HRM. Based on the 2016 Census:
    1. 59% walk to work
    2. 2% use a bicycle to go to work
    3. 14% take transit to go to work
    4. 24% use a vehicle (as a driver and passenger) to get to work

Learn More:

Want to learn more about the Water Street Enhancements project? We encourage you to:


Thanks to everyone who took the time to respond to the survey. Your input will help shape the future of Water Street. The survey is now closed.



Page last updated: 20 Apr 2022, 11:44 AM