Project Profiles in Nova Scotia

Learn more about some of the projects in Nova Scotia by selecting a community name:

Rejuvenated hiking trails encourage tourism

Project location: Advocate

Hikers from far and wide are drawn to Cape Chignecto Provincial Park for its spectacular coastal hiking trails, wilderness camping, secluded coves and plunging ravines.

Ten years of frequent use, water damage from heavy rains and damp coastal weather had taken its toll on park trails. Wooden stair structures were rotted and heavily used paths were worn, uneven and muddy.

Park officials conducted a thorough evaluation of the 50-kilometre trail network, and with support from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, made some much needed upgrades.

Using environmentally sustainable designs, work crews spruced up trail access points and replaced the wooden stairways throughout the park. They either rejuvenated with gravel or completely rebuilt any heavily damaged paths.

The upgrades will enhance the experience of visitors for years to come and help enhance overall education and interpretation of the natural environment in the region.

Federal contribution: $150,000

Camping in style

Mira River Provincial Park in Albert Bridge

Project location: Albert Bridge

Mira River Provincial Park is perfectly situated to showcase Cape Breton's rich natural and cultural heritage. It is the largest provincial camping park on Cape Breton Island, and is centrally located between Louisbourg, Glace Bay and Sydney. The park is a popular location for campers. Once there, they can enjoy outdoor activities onsite or take day trips to see the many local attractions.

With park reservations on the rise, the timely arrival of the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund helped the province upgrade and expand the site to meet current standards and support the park's long-term sustainability.

The expansion and development of Mira River Provincial Park used environmentally friendly designs for campsites. Water and energy use were also considered in the planning.

The campsites are now larger to accommodate family-sized tents and a second washroom building is available. It is fully accessible and equipped with showers and flush toilets, a family washroom, an exterior dishwashing station and an alcove for a washer and dryer. About 20 campsites also received direct water and electrical hook ups.

Visitors to the area will now be more comfortable when bedding down before their treks around Cape Breton's wilderness.

Federal contribution: $525,000

Granton Abercrombie Road

Repairing Granton Abercrombie Road in Alma

Project location: Alma

The Infrastructure Stimulus Fund provided more than $650,000 towards repairing Granton Abercrombie Road in Alma, a small rural community located at the head of the Middle River in Pictou County. This project, now complete, fixed some severe road rutting and cracking, as well as numerous pavement deformations and potholes from Trunk 4 to the railroad crossing near the Michelin Plant.

Restoring this driving surface will contribute to lower fuel costs, improved vehicle emissions, and reduced vehicle maintenance.

Through the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, the Government of Canada is funding dozens of highway and road projects in Nova Scotia as well as three provincial bridges.

Federal contribution: $650,250

Improving water quality and getting under way faster

Replaced water main in Annapolis County.

Project location: Annapolis County

Cornwallis Park is a small rural community in Annapolis Valley located on the western edge of Clementsport. Formerly a military base, it is now home to one of the top meeting facilities in Nova Scotia. It also hosts more than 1,000 Royal Canadian Sea Cadets annually for training at the Pearson Peacekeeping Centre.

For the community to remain a meeting place of choice, maintaining critical infrastructure is essential. That's why the Municipality of Annapolis applied for federal financial support to bring the Cornwallis Park water distribution system up to date.

The system dated back to 1949. Despite maintenance over the years, severe corrosion in the aging pipes had caused water quality issues for some time.

This project marked the beginning of a multi-year process to replace substandard pipes. For this phase, workers replaced 700 metres of deteriorated water main. The distribution network was also altered to improve access for maintenance crews.

Without help from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, this project might have been delayed for some time. The accelerated federal environmental assessment process, established in 2009, was also instrumental in allowing the project to get underway much sooner than would otherwise have been possible.

Federal contribution: $54,472

Treated wastewater helps protect a valued resource

The Cornwallis Park wastewater system in Annapolis Royal.

Project location: Annapolis County

Located on the south shore of the Annapolis Basin, Deep Brook is the most productive clam harvest area in Canada.

When malfunctioning sewage disposal systems were reported in central Deep Brook, officials looked for solutions. At risk was the health of residents, the environment and the clam beds, which are a major source of revenue for the community.

Federal government funding from the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund helped extend the Cornwallis Park wastewater system to the community of Deep Brook.

The new sewage collection system in Deep Brook is designed to support future extensions as well. For example, should the need arise, the system can be expanded to also serve the eastern part of the community.

Approximately 75 households, including local stores and neighbourhood businesses are now connected to the Cornwallis Park Waste Water Treatment Plant. Just as important to the community, the clam beds are safe.

Federal contribution: $361,287

Federal Gas Tax Fund helps expand recreational trail network

Project location: Annapolis County

Annapolis County residents and visitors of all ages now have more reason to stay active thanks to the completion of a new section of the Old Mill Trail.

The Old Mill Trail is a wheelchair-accessible, multi-use pathway that runs along the banks of the Annapolis River in the small residential community of South Farmington.

This project was developed to expand outdoor recreational options for the community's aging population and people with disabilities. Dotted with picnic tables and benches, it also provides more opportunities for outdoor family fun and has created new connections among the different parts of the community.

When originally opened in 2000, the trail covered less than one hectare. Feedback from a public session of the Municipal Council's Community Recreation Engagement Process in 2011 showed that South Farmington residents loved the trail and wanted more of it. The Council agreed and, thanks to financial support from the federal Gas Tax Fund, the trail is now double its original length.

"If it were not for the Gas Tax funding, it would be unlikely we would be expanding our network of trails and pathways and creating new areas to encourage more connectivity through communities for people of all ages," said Debra Ryan, Manager of Recreation Services for the County of Annapolis.

Projects like these demonstrate how the Government of Canada is contributing to livable communities that promote healthy lifestyles and a cleaner environment.

Safe sidewalk project complete

Safe Sidewalk Project results in Annapolis Royal

Project location: Annapolis Royal

Nestled in the Annapolis Valley, Annapolis Royal is steeped in history spanning over 400 years. As a designated National Historic District, the community receives many tourists.

Thanks to funding from Building Canada's Communities Component and equal shares from the Province of Nova Scotiaand the municipality, the town's St. Anthony Street and Drury Lane Safe Sidewalkproject is now complete. Work involved adding new curbs, gutters and storm sewers to make the entire length of the road safer and more accessible to wheelchairs, cyclists and pedestrians.

Previously, neither of these twostreets had sidewalks, even though many pedestrians walked along them to accessgrocery and hardware stores, the fire hall, and other homes and businesses.

"As a citizen of this town," says Carol Littleton, citizen of Annapolis Royal, "I experience feelings of gratitude to staff and council for the work done on behalf of the citizens of this town."

These upgrades have not only improved safety for pedestrians and cyclists already using this route, they have alsohelped meet the town's priority of reducing its environmental impact by encouraging more residents to use alternative modes of transportation.

Federal contribution: $235,819

Road rehabilitation improving traffic flow and driver safety

Gravelling and asphalt concrete repaving in Antigonish

Project location: Antigonish

Route 245 from Highway 104 to Smith Road #3 provides access to schools, medical facilities, shopping centres and other important facilities.

This stretch of roadway had severe rutting, cracking, and potholes, but with financial support from the federal infrastructure Stimulus Fund, workers restored the road's sub-structure and repaved it.

This has improved traffic flow in the area, which contributes to lower fuel costs and greenhouse gas emissions. The road is also now safer, requires less ongoing maintenance, and is saving drivers money by causing less damage to their vehicles.

Federal contribution: $1,116,000

Improving village water treatment services

Project location: Arichat

The Village of Arichat is located on Isle Madame off the southeastern corner of Cape Breton Island and is one of Nova Scotia's oldest communities. Rich in natural beauty and boasting a strong entrepreneurial spirit, Isle Madame prides itself on being a progressive, welcoming community with great potential for business growth.

Making sure the island's communities have solid infrastructure is one of the keys to nurturing this potential. In Arichat, five sewage pumping stations dating back to the 1970s had become impossible to maintain. With the closure of the original manufacturer in 2001, parts were no longer available to repair the aging, malfunctioning equipment.

Thanks to support from the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, Arichat has five new sewage pumps. The village chose above-ground, self-priming pumps and below-ground, submersible pumps based on their cost-effectiveness and reliability. It further minimized costs by re-using existing wet wells and sewage force mains.

Federal contribution: $250,000

Carrying on a tradition of fitness in Berwick

The new arena inside the Kings Mutual Century Centre in Berwick

Project location: Berwick

In October 2010, Berwick residents turned out indroves to attend the official opening of their newest pride and joy, the Kings Mutual Century Centre. Berwick had replaced its old arena with a more accessible facility that meets currentbuilding codes and safety standards.

Federal funding for the project was provided through the Building Canada Fund - Major Infrastructure Component. Provincial, municipal and private-sector support also made the project possible.

Open for public use, the Centre boasts a 5,000-square-metre multi-use recreation facility that includes an 865-seat NHL-sized ice surface, a 200-metre walking track and administration areas.

Built to meet the needs of the community for generations to come, the Kings Mutual Century Centre continues to support the sports and recreational activities that the town and area residents thrive upon.

Federal contribution: $4,000,000

Multiple upgrades for busy street

Commercial Street in Berwick

Project location: Berwick

Thanks to financial support from the federal Gas Tax Fund and the Communities Component of the Building Canada Fund, the Town of Berwick was able to replace outdated water infrastructure and increase pedestrian and cyclist safety along a busy street.

Commercial Street is Berwick's main throughfare. The street is lined with many businesses and offices that draw a steady flow of traffic throughout the day. Below the busy road's surface, a 50-year-old wastewater collection system was past its prime.

Work crews installed new storm and sanitary sewers, curbs and gutters. Commercial Street was resurfaced, and a portion of the sidewalk reconstructed. Bike lanes were also added.

"The completion of the Commercial Street project has brought, not only significant improvements to our sewer system, but has substantially enhanced the appearance of Exit 15," said Berwick Mayor, John Prall. "The public has been very complimentary and appreciative with regard to the beautification of Commercial Street, especially in the way of curbing, sidewalks and bike lanes."

Federal contribution: BCF-CC: $252,063; and additional funding through GTF.

Improving wastewater management

Installation of a new sewage collection and management system in Bible Hill

Project location: Bible Hill

Across the Salmon River from the Town of Truro is a small residential village of just over 5,000 people called Bible Hill. It has only a few major employers, including the local agricultural college, a national leader in agricultural research. The reputation is attracting about 900 students a year plus academic researchers. With this draw, plus its close proximity to Halifax, Bible Hill's population is on the rise, along with the demand for modern infrastructure.

Only about 30 per cent of the homes and businesses are serviced by a municipal water system. The rest use private wells, making it critical to protect the ground water that serves as a source for a majority of the community's drinking water.

Until recently, Bible Hill had a 40-year-old sewage pumping station. The aging pumps required extensive maintenance and were operating at full capacity. As well, storm water lines ran under the Bible Hill Recreation Park, a former landfill site. Storm water infiltration into the sanitary sewer mains also caused the pumps to run more frequently than they should have.

To address these issues and accommodate future development, the village received funding from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to support the installation of a new sewage collection and management system.

Once complete, the project will help prevent fluids from the landfill's decomposing waste from entering the village's groundwater and wells. It will also substantially reduce the community's wastewater infrastructure maintenance costs.

Federal contribution: $271,807

Renewing Church Street

A project to renew Church Street in the town is now substantially complete in Bridgetown

Project location: Bridgetown

Along the Annapolis River you will find Bridgetown, home to over 950 residents, Victorian architecture and a proud history in shipbuilding.

A project to renew Church Street in the town is now complete. Thanks to a financial contribution from the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, together with equal contributions from the province and the municipality, workers repaired the surface and sub-surface, improved the wastewater collection system and widened the intersection at Granville.

This project also benefited from the expedited environmental assessment process built into the Economic Action Plan, without which it would have been delayed for months or possibly even years.

For residents of Bridgetown, the project means improved traffic flow, reduced damage to vehicles, better safety for pedestrians and reduced emissions from heavy vehicles idling at the intersection.

"Two-thirds combined funding from the federal and provincial governments under the Building Canada Fund, as well as a loan from Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation's Municipal Infrastructure Lending Program, enabled the Town of Bridgetown to proceed with extensive upgrading to the road and sidewalk surfaces on Church Street," said John Langmead, former Chief Administrative Officer for the Town of Bridgetown. "We've experienced improvements to the wastewater collection system and traffic flow, not to mention minimizing damage to homes and vehicles, reduced danger to pedestrian traffic."

Thought by many to be the "Prettiest Little Town in Nova Scotia," Bridgetown just got even better.

Federal contribution: $350,869

New technology applied to age old problem of managing waste

A new landfill cell at the Kaizer Meadow Solid Waste Facility in Chester

Project location: Chester

The Village of Chester, near Mahone Bay, received contributions from the Building Canada Fund Communities Component to construct a new landfill cell at the Kaizer Meadow Solid Waste Facility. The expanded facility was completed in 2009 and serves the counties of Annapolis, Lunenburg and Kings.

As the first of its kind in North America, the new site uses sand filters and aeration processes to break down liquid organics and purify the decomposition liquids. After the treatment process, the purified liquid moves to a vaporizing unit that atomizes the water, discharging it into the air, where it falls to the ground as snow or rain, and only clean water flows back into the East River system.

Federal contribution: $641,750

Making the old new again - recycling for future prosperity

Material recovery facility in Clare

Project location: Clare

Digby County, including the Municipality of Clare, the Municipality of the District of Digby and the Town of Digby, could not process recyclables locally. Their plastic and paper went to Yarmouth's landfill, about an hour away. Thanks to financial support from the federal Gas Tax Fund, this is no longer the case.

Today, Digby County's first material recovery facility is located in Clare and can process more than 1,000 tons of recycled materials annually. Beyond the added convenience and environmental benefits, the centre generates income through the sale of sorted and baled recyclables.

In keeping with the spirit of the project, a former lumber mill in Clare's Industrial Park was renovated to accommodate the new facility. Most of its equipment was bought used and refurbished locally.

"Diverting these products from landfills is our responsibility as a municipality in Nova Scotia, and the Municipality of Clare is excited to embark on this venture," remarked Jean Melanson, Warden of the Municipality of Clare. "It fits very well into our plans to help grow our economy by supporting sustainable, environmentally friendly ventures."

Maintaining a primary link between communities

Trunk 2, a major highway in Cumberland County, is used primarily for agricultural, log and lumber hauling, and touristic purposes

Project location: Cumberland County

Surrounded by farms, mineral mines and extensive tracts of forest, Trunk 2, a major highway in Cumberland County, is used primarily for agricultural, log and lumber hauling, and touristic purposes.

This route is also the main link between the communities of Springhill, Amherst and Parrsborro. In fact, if the road were ever closed, Parrsborro would be completely cut off from the east side of the County.

Recognizing the importance of maintaining this road, the federal government contributed half ofthe cost to rehabilitate it. The contribution was provided through the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund.

Work consisted of gravelling and paving 6 kilometres of the route, north of Lakelands Road.

The newly paved surface is a pleasure to drive on and has greatly improved driver safety. The improvements have also reduced ongoing maintenance costs and extended the life of the road.

Federal contribution: $810,000

Huge boost for Haligonian commuters

Transit Bridge Terminal

Project location: Dartmouth

To expand and improve its transit services, the Halifax Regional Municipality used part of its Gas Tax Fund allocation to build a new bus terminal in Dartmouth.

Located at the foot of the McDonald Bridge, which crosses into Halifax, the Metro Transit Bridge Terminal is one of the busiest transfer points in the bus system. Most buses travelling from Dartmouth to Halifax stop here and it is the end of the line for all other Dartmouth routes.

The old terminal had no shelter other than from the bridge above and consisted of a single narrow platform where drivers and passengers alike had to jockey for position. Exiting and entering the often over-crowded terminal was not only time-consuming, safety was becoming a serious concern.

With the new terminal, transit users can now wait for their buses in the comfort of an indoor, climate-controlled shelter. The building is fully accessible and includes public washrooms, enhanced customer information displays, space for vendors, a private room for drivers, and bike storage facilities. With 16 distinct, glass-covered bus bays, the terminal is also much easier for drivers and passengers to manoeuvre, which is improving transit times and reducing the risk of accidents.

A new pedestrian bridge connecting nearby streets to the terminal rounds out the features, along with remote security cameras to improve safety and a number of energy-saving devices, including a green roof.

This project complements a number of scheduling and route adjustments Metro Transit is making to accommodate steady population growth in the area, as well as the surges expected to come with new offshore developments and ship contracts.

Improving business opportunities

A new sanitary sewer trunk along the north shore of Lake Banook in Dartmouth

Project location: Dartmouth

Construction is complete on a new sanitary sewer trunk along the north shore of Lake Banook in Dartmouth. This sewer line provides the vital infrastructure services required to expand Atlantic Canada's largest industrial park.

Burnside Industrial Park is located within minutes of downtown Halifax, houses more than 1,500 businesses, provides employment to 27,000 and generates approximately $4.58 billion per year in commercial proceeds.

Thanks to a contribution from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, the existing gravity-fed sewer trunk line has been extended by two kilometres to accommodate two phases of a development project. The pipe diameter was also doubled.

Business Parks Manager, Michael Wile, anticipated big benefits from this project. "The completion of the North Dartmouth Trunk Sewer will enable the continued success and growth of Burnside Business Industrial Park, which is a significant economic generator for the region."

Investments in the industrial park are also helping Halifax prepare for future economic expansion as the Atlantic gateway to North American and international markets.

Federal contribution: $1,333,333

Ensuring adequate water supply for the future

An engineered spring with a buried intake pipe and a pump house in East Hants

Project location: East Hants

East Hants' Regional Water Utility draws water from the Shubenacadie River and distributes it to approximately 6,500 people in the communities of Enfield, Elmsdale and Lantz. With municipal expansion on the rise, estimates indicate that the communities' need for fresh water will double during the next 20 years.

To accommodate this growth and provide adequate water supplies toresidents year-round, East Hants needed toaccess additional water resources. With the help of a financial contribution from the Building Canada Fund Communities Component, East Hants opted for an engineered spring.

A buried intake pipe and a pump house at Shubenacadie-Grand Lake draws water through underground pipes running to the Shubenacadie River, upstream from the Highway 102 bridge. Control systems monitor, track and manage river flow andwater withdrawal quantities.

The new engineered spring is now in place and will supply the community with ample fresh water for years to come.

Federal contribution: $662,933

Regional residents benefit from a bigger, better sportsplex

The sportsplex in East Hants

Project location: East Hants

About two decades ago, the East Hants Sportsplex was built in the community of Lantz, located on the Shubenacadie River between Milford and Elmsdale in the growing Municipality of East Hants.

The sportsplex has contributed greatly to the quality of life of East Hants residents over the years, offering recreational facilities and community meeting space. However, the facility needed a retrofit to meet the demands of the growing community.

Today, residents benefit from an expanded multi-purpose facility thanks to financial support from the Major Infrastructure Component of the Building Canada Fund and from the Innovative Communities Fund administered by the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency.

The renovated facility includes a second ice rink, a new indoor soccer field and running track, two new multi-purpose rooms and upgraded change rooms. Mechanical and electrical systems are more energy efficient, and a new elevator and repaved parking lot improve access to the facility. Home to many amateur sports organizations, the revamped centre has already hosted a number of larger-scale sporting events.

"The expansion of the East Hants Sportsplex is a significant step forward in a time when there is increasing emphasis on exercise and activity," remarked John Patterson, Warden of the Municipality of East Hants.

Federal contribution: BCF-MIC: $2 million; Innovative Communities Fund: $1 million

From rail to trail—encouraging active living

The Chain of Lakes Trail is the region's newest trail in Halifax

Project location: Halifax

With numerous multi-purpose trails criss-crossing the Regional Municipality of Halifax, it's easy for residents to get from one area to another on safe, scenic pathways.

The Chain of Lakes Trail is the region's newest trail. It connects the city's suburban trails to the urban trail network. Running along the former Chester Spur Railway Line, the route winds its way from the Beechville-Lakeside-Tiberlea Trail in Lakeside Industrial Park through to Bayers Lake Park. It then branches off in two different directions ending at Joseph Howe Drive and the Armdale Rotary, two major arterial routes leading into Halifax.

With support from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, work to grade and pave key sections of the 8-kilometre, 4-metre-wide trail is now complete. Guard rails have also been installed.

These improvements make the trail accessible to cyclists, skate boarders, roller bladers, wheelchairs and more. The paving will also allow the city to keep the trail plowed during the winter months.

The Chain of Lakes Trail completes phase two of Nova Scotia's portion of the Trans Canada Trail, the largest proposed network of trails in the world.

Federal contribution: $333,333

Halifax Mainland Common Centre now a reality

The Mainland Common Centre in Halifax

Project location: Halifax

The much-anticipated Halifax Mainland Common Centre held its grand opening in January 2011 and inaugurated its activities by hosting the Canada Winter Games from February 11 to the 27.

Also known as the Canada Games Centre, the building is a state-of-the-art athletic facility featuring an eight-lane, 25-metre indoor pool, a leisure pool and a water slide. The Centre also boasts a 52,000-square-foot field house, a 200-metre indoor running/walking track and two separate spectator areas with seating for 500 people. Rounding out the features are four full-sized gyms, an 11,500-square-foot health and wellness centre, a youth centre, multipurpose dance and arts studios, community meeting rooms, and a café.

The new centre was designed to blend community wellness and recreational programming with high performance sports training and competition. It is the largest municipal complex east of Montréal. Conveniently located on Thomas Raddall Drive off Lacewood Drive, it joins other facilities on the Common including Halifax West High School, Keshen Goodman Public Library, the Bella Rose Theatre, and indoor and outdoor soccer facilities.

This project was made possible, in part, by a contribution from the Major Infrastructure Component of the federal government's Building Canada Fund.

Federal contribution: $12,000,000

Modernizing access and library resources

Construction of the new library in Halifax

Project location: Halifax

The Spring Garden Road Library was built in 1951, not just as the City's main information resource centre, but as a living memorial to Halifax's veterans of World War I and II. Located in the heart of the city, the current 3,530-square-metre library houses a collection of over 220,000 titles.

To meet the growing needs of the community and modernize resource access, a new state-of-the-art library is under construction. It will replace the outdated Spring Garden branch thanks to support from the Major Infrastructure Component of the Building Canada Fund.

Halifax consulted a wide variety of residents and community groups to settle on the final design and suite of services. At approximately 10,000 square metres, the new library will be triple the size of the old one. With a focus on improving access to electronic resources, the number of public computer terminals will increase from 37 to 235. Adaptable meeting rooms and learning centres will also increase about five-fold and will be supported with the latest technology. A new 250-seat auditorium will add to the library's capacity to host learning sessions and presentations, or to serve as a community meeting venue.

The Halifax Central Library is being built to a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver standard. The facility and its resources will also be completely accessible to people with disabilities.

This project will provide residents with an innovative new resource centre and community gathering space. It will also help support the economic revitalization of the downtown area by drawing local residents to the area while also creating an exciting landmark for tourists and regional visitors alike. It will remain a memorial to Halifax's veterans.

Federal contribution: $18,300,000

Paving the way to efficient travel

Highway 102, the Veterans Memorial Highway, in Halifax and Dartmouth

Project location: Halifax and Darmouth

Highway 102, also known as the Veterans Memorial Highway, is one of the busiest divided highways in Nova Scotia, with more than 20,000 vehicles travelling the route every day. It links Highways 101, 103, 104, 118 and the Trans-Canada, and provides easy access among the Robert L. Stanfield International Airport, Halifax's downton core and Dartmouth.

Its importance to the economy in Nova Scotia and other Atlantic provinces is also underlined by the sheer volume of travellers and commercial business moving through the airport it serves. More than 3.4 million passengers and 27,000 tonnes of cargo move annually through 640 flights to 42 destinations every year.

Sustaining the quality of this primary route is critical and so when sections of the highway had become badly worn, the province sought $1.395 million in federal infrastructure funding to help with the necessary repairs.

Now that potholes are fixed, shoulders repaired and asphalt replaced, residents, commercial carriers and tourists alike have a safer road to travel. The repairs will extend the road surface life by about 15 years, which will greatly reduce ongoing maintenance.

Federal contribution: $1,395,000

Ragged Lake Transit Facility

Ragged Lake Transit Facility

Photo courtesy of Chris Reardon

Project location: Halifax

Serving more than 23 million riders throughout the Halifax Regional Municipality (HRM) annually, Metro Transit is the largest transit agency in Atlantic Canada.

Operating efficiently is key to keeping costs down and maintaining a high level of service for transit users. This is why HRM put part of its federal Gas Tax Fund allocation, as well as funding from the federal Public Transit Capital Trust, towards building a new bus storage facility in Halifax.

Previously, Metro Transit wasoperating out of cramped facilities in Dartmouth. The bus storage garage was too small to accommodate a growing fleet and had no heating.This meant buses had to be kept running overnight in winter.

With over 16,700 square metres of space, the new Ragged Lake Transit Facility has a bus service centre, an administration area and a heated garage that can accommodate up to 200 transit vehicles. The building was constructed with low or zero emission products and features many energy-saving devices.

The facility's location increased efficiency by reducing the toll costs related to driving buses to and from the storage facility over two bridges in Dartmouth.

The financial and operational efficiencies made possible by this project mean Metro Transit can focus on other priorities, such as expanding its fleet and introducing new routes and services for commuters.

Restoring Halifax's historic City Hall

Halifax's City Hall

Photo courtesy of Graeme F. Duffus NSAA

Project location: Halifax

Halifax City Hall is located on the corner of Duke and Argyle Streets at the end of Grand Parade. Completed in 1889, the building survived the 1917 explosion that rocked the city with only minimal damage. It is a designated national historic site.

After 120 years of use and a few renovations, the building's stone work had deteriorated to the point of compromising public safety. But with support from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund and the province, work to restore this iconic landmark to its former glory is now complete.

The project involved a systematic, four-phase restoration of the building's stone facades, beginning with the side on Argyle Street. Work included cleaning, repainting and rebuilding the sculptured details.

Tourists and residents can once again see what this magnificent building looked like back in 1889.

Federal contribution: $2,000,000

Safer commuting into Halifax

The Fairview overpass in Halifax

Project location: Halifax

The Fairview overpass is a major throughway connecting the Town of Bedford to downtown Halifax. With more than 25,000 vehicles using the overpass daily, it is one of the busiest commuter routes in the province.

Inspections showed that an older portion of the bridge needed to be completely replaced. In the interim, one of three lanes had to be closed due to the deterioration of bridge girders.

The federal government provided financial support from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to completely demolish and rebuild the 38-metre section.

A precast, prestressed, concrete beam structure is now in place along with modified bridge approaches to improve traffic flow. Widening the shoulders and installing multi-use sidewalks were also part of the work.

With the bridge once again fully open to traffic, commuter safety and transportation efficiencies have been greatly improved in the area.

Federal contribution: $2,700,000

Vital bridge rehabilitation over Halifax Harbour

The updated Mackay Bridge in Halifax

Project location: Halifax

Thanks to a $3.7-million investment from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, critical rehabilitation work is now substantially complete on the A. Murray MacKay Bridge in Halifax.

The MacKay Bridge is the only structure that can support commercial truck traffic and a key route across Halifax Harbour into the city's central business district. With more than 18 million vehicles using the bridge each year, its road surface had deteriorated to the point of causing significant safety concerns for drivers. Salty air had also corroded the deck panels and expansion joints, causing further safety issues.

The federal contribution, matched by the province, enabled the replacement of the steel plate deck panels and expansion joints. The roadway has also been resurfaced to improve driving conditions.

As well as addressing the safety issues, major repairs on the bridge are not expected to be required for another 15 years. "This … is the largest project completed at the MacKay Bridge since it opened in 1970," noted Steve Snider, General Manager and CEO for Halifax Harbour Bridges. "The work needed to be done for the long-term safety of the traveling public."

Federal contribution: $3,700,000

Federal Gas Tax Fund supporting strategic investments in public transit

Halifax Metro Transit's new fleet

Project location: Halifax

Halifax Metro Transit's fleet includes 22 new, environmentally friendly buses thanks to financial support from the federal Gas Tax Fund. Nine of the new buses will be used to expand the fleet, while the rest will replace older models.

Halifax's older model buses were less fuel efficient and less reliable, resulting in higher maintenance costs. Diesel emissions also posed an environmental concern. According to a fall 2011 report presented to the Halifax Regional Municipality's Transportation Standing Committee, one 1988 transit bus produces the same soot emissions of 60 modern clean-diesel buses. So replacing the older buses will not only deliver reliability benefits; it also significantly reduces diesel emissions.

"The assurance of long-range funding for gas tax transfers … help[ed] Halifax make strategic investments to improve and modernize the transit system," highlighted Halifax Mayor, Mike Savage on the importance of the funding when he initially announced the investment. "As we plan for a growing economy and a growing community, smart multi-level government investments in transit and other infrastructure are critically important."

Now that older bus models can be retired, diesel emissions will be reduced, adding better air quality to the list of benefits that the new fleet is bringing to Halifax residents.

Better road safety in Inverness

9.6 kilometres of north-bound Highway 105 have been repaved

Project location: Inverness

As the primary route through the region of Inverness in Cape Breton, Highway 105 links many communities between Port Hastings and Sydney. Local businesses, residents and tourists use this route daily for transporting goods, commuting and recreational activities.

With heavy use over many years, however, road deterioration had created numerous potholes and other deformities that had begun to compromise driver safety.

Thanks to $2,430,000 in combined funding from the federal and provincial governments, 9.6 kilometres of this north-bound highway have now been repaved. A smoother road surface means drivers no longer have to swerve around pavement defects. This has increased safety, improved traffic flow and reduced vehicle wear and tear. It has also extended the life of the road by another 15 years.

Federal contribution: $1,215,000

Busy downtown street gets revitalized

Project location: Kentville

Many businesses have moved to Kentville in the Annapolis Valley in recent years, making it the biggest and fastest growing town in the region.

Lined with offices, shops and eateries, Webster Court is one of downtown Kentville's most prominent streets. After years of deterioration, however, this high traffic area was in need of repair. With help from its federal Gas Tax Fund allocation, the town has now revitalized the area.

Today, the road sports new asphalt and the curbs and sidewalks have new concrete. New LED street lights added the finishing touch.

"We have been extremely happy with the support we received from the federal government for this development project," said Kentville Mayor, David L. Corkum. "The joint efforts of all the funding partners have helped transform Webster Court from one of our oldest looking streets into one of the nicest streets found in Kentville."

Energy efficiency upgrades in Kentville

Project location: Kentville

Located in the heart of Kings County along the scenic Evangeline Trail, Kentville is the largest town in the Annapolis Valley. It is also the regional hub for most professional and municipal services.

In 1980, the town built the Kings County Municipal Complex. The building houses municipal offices, the sheriff's office, the registry of deeds and probates, and the local provincial assessment bureau. It also has a barristers' library and overnight lock-up facilities. Courtrooms and court offices for provincial and supreme court judges, their support staff and crown prosecutors round out the list of current occupants.

Although this 30-year-old building functions well, a recent energy audit revealed a number of key upgrades that would deliver a 20-per cent decrease in electricity and fuel consumption.

Thanks to the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, the Complex now has a new heating, cooling and ventilation system. The roof has also been replaced, and digital lighting and heating controls installed.

These updates have given the building a new lease on life. They will help ensure the facility remains a cost-efficient venue for delivering essential services for years to come.

Federal contribution: $296,667

Driver safety increased along major Nova Scotia highway

Highway 101 in Kingston, Nova Scotia

Project location: Kingston

Highway 101 runs through the province from east to west along the southern coast of the Bay of Fundy, between Halifax and Yarmouth. Ever since it was first constructed, the highway quickly developed into a major thoroughfare. Today, it supports a steady stream of daily commercial and residential traffic, as well as tourist vehicles during the summer months.

Along with increased use, the frequency of accidents increased over the decades. It was even nominated as one Nova Scotia's most dangerous roads, citing several deaths each year. Improvements were needed to increase safety.

Drivers now have a safer road to travel on between Coldbrook and Kingston thanks, in part, to funding from the Major Infrastructure Component of the Building Canada Fund. This Government of Canada infrastructure funding program targets larger strategic projects of national and regional significance, such as the core national highway system.

The Province of Nova Scotia put the funding contribution towards a project to build new passing lanes at three locations over a 31-kilometre stretch of the highway.

These improvements are benefiting highway users in more ways than one. The new lanes make it safer to pass slow moving vehicles by allowing same-direction, dedicated-lane passing. The resulting improvements in traffic flow also make for a faster and less frustrating commute.

Federal contribution: $4,166,711

Key arterial route improved

The New Cumberland Road project included repaving the road, replacing culverts, fixing hazardous road surface break-up with asphalt patches, and installing new shoulders

Project location: Lake Centre

Rich in charm and history, the District of Lunenburg offers a safe, rural lifestyle with wonderful seaside communities, sparkling coves and beaches, and numerous recreational lakes. It is home to a growing population and considered one of the hot spots for development in Nova Scotia.

For Lake Centre, located in the heart of Lunenburg, access to federal infrastructure funding was key to addressing long-standing safety issues on an important local artery. New Cumberland Road was in very poor condition. Not only had severe cracking and rutting made driving dangerous, plows were having difficulty clearing the route during the winter.

Work on this project included repaving the road, replacing culverts, fixing hazardous roadsurface break-up with asphalt patches, and installing new shoulders.

"The road was in very poor condition before the paving," commented Wayne Feener, Project Engineer with the Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Infrastructure Renewal. "Residents living on the road are very pleased with the work completed."

Not only has driver safety greatly improved, the work has extended the life of the road by another 15 years and helped reduce vehicle maintenance costs.

Federal contribution: $675,000

New facility to stimulate economic and physical activity

Queens Place Emera Centre in Liverpool

Project location: Liverpool

Thanks to a contribution from the Major Infrastructure Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, residents of the Region of Queens Municipality now have a new multi-purpose sports and recreational facility.

The $20-million centre, called Queens Place Emera Centre, includes awalking track, a large hockey rink and a fitness centre, complete with aerobics studio. It also houses community gathering and educational programming space, and a canteen with an associated common area.

The centre will offer a wide variety of year-round recreational and fitness options for all ages and abilities. It also allows the municipality to host events such as trade shows and concerts.

As well as stimulating economic development in the region, the Queens Place project is helping to build the municipality's capacity to contribute to a healthy future for its residents, a community priority.

"This is a very exciting time," remarked Doug Adams, Chair of the Queens Place Committee. "The federal funding is crucial to the project and is allowing us to finally provide residents with the facility they deserve and more opportunities to be active."

Federal contribution: $6,555,231

National heritage treasure restored

The Bluenose II, returned to her previous glory, floats in the harbour as onlookers savour this momentous event.

Photo courtesy of Communications Nova Scotia

Project location: Lunenburg

Almost a century ago, the legendary Bluenose brought new fame to Nova Scotia as home to master shipbuilders of racing class schooners. This working fishing schooner was built in 1921 and made history by winning the International Fisherman's Trophy that year and again for the next 17 consecutive years. Although she was lost at sea in 1946 on a reef near Haiti, the ship continues to serve as a testament to Atlantic Canada's shipbuilding and sailing skills, through an iconic image etched onto the Canadian dime and Nova Scotia's provincial licence plate.

The Bluenose II was launched in 1963 and boasts many of the characteristics of its predecessor, having been built in the same shipyard by some of the same hands. A hugely popular symbol of maritime heritage, countless tourists have flocked to the east coast and her ports of call to catch a glimpse of this famous ship.

Over the decades, the effects of her many excursions into the Atlantic Ocean had distorted the hull, compromising the vessel's safety and performance. Time had also taken its toll on the interior. The wiring, sewage handling and propulsion systems all desperately needed updating. No longer able to sail, restoring the Bluenose II had become a high priority.

Thanks to financial contributions from the federal government's Infrastructure Stimulus Fund and from the Province of Nova Scotia, the ship has now been fully restored – perhaps even beyond its former glory. Skilled craftsmen completely rebuilt the hull using new materials that will better guard against the forces of nature. The antiquated systems were replaced and, to top it all off, the new decking was reconfigured to more accurately reflect that of the original Bluenose.

Known as "Canada's Sailing Ambassador," this national icon can now continue to visit ports throughout North America, serving as a living reminder of Canadian shipbuilders' craftmanship and an era of glorious sailing prowess.

Federal contribution: $4,937,500

Learn more about the Bluenose II project from start to finish.

Ensuring the environmentally sensitive closure of a landfill site

The closed, first generation landfill site at the Lunenburg Regional Community Recycling Centre in Nova Scotia

Project location: Lunenburg

Idyllic landscape, coastal villages and colourful houses paint a beautiful picture of Lunenburg, one of Nova Scotia's prime and picturesque tourist destinations.

As amazing as this UNESCO World Heritage site is, Lunenburg, like other towns, must also take care of non-tourist tasks—like dealing with garbage. When something smelled foul at the old local dump, town council had to take steps to better manage the waste.

Funding from the Building Canada Fund Communities Component was used to help cover the costs associated with successfully closing a first generation landfill site at the Lunenburg Regional Community Recycling Centre.

Unused since 2005, the 13-year-old solid waste area was capped with a three-foot layer of clay designed to minimize gas emissions and help retain the liquids produced during the decomposition process.

To ensure proper drainage and encourage plant growth, the clay cap was topped with ten inches of locally-produced compost. The addition of a strategically-placed sprinkler system ensures new growth plants thrive, and the compost remains moist so the clay lid remains free of cracks.

After the landfill site was successfully capped, the municipality has continued to monitor ground water and gas emissions, in addition to checking the integrity of the clay cap. These measures will help protect the community's water and air quality

Federal contribution: $534,000

Making the Lighthouse Route even better – getting under way faster

Route 331 in Lunenburg

Project location: Lunenburg

Route 331 winds its way along the South Shore's Lighthouse Route near Vogler's Cove. It is used by cyclists and motorists alike to tour a coastal paradise of ocean views and sheltered fishing villages.

The road had begun to show wear and tear with severe rutting and cracking, making parts of it unsafe. So the Province of Nova Scotia successfully applied for funding from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to rehabilitate this important collector road.

Ten kilometres have now been restored. This project was able to move forward in good time thanks to the streamlined federal environmental assessment process established in 2009. The work completed involved fixing potholes, repaving the road surface and repairing the road shoulders.

With the upgrades, residents and tourists are enjoying a safer travel route and the province has reduced its maintenance costs.

Federal contribution: $1,350,000

Coordinated construction: reduced costs

Sanitary sewer upgrades and the replacement of an undersized water main in Mahone Bay

Project location: Mahone Bay

Nova Scotia's world-famous south shore attracts visitors from around the world to its picture-postcard-perfect vistas and sheltered bays. One of the best-known towns along this stretch of coast, Mahone Bay thrives on tourism.

To get to Mahone Bay, visitors usually take the highway winding along the coast, Route 103, then Long Hill Road down to the harbour and its many attractions. But financial pressures associated with upgrading water utility services on Long Hill Road threatened to keep the road under construction for more than one tourist season.

The Town of Mahone Bay coordinated the timing of a sanitary sewer upgrade with the replacement of an undersized water main, so they only had to dig up Long Hill Road once. The project was made possible thanks to a $61,250 investment from the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, along with equal shares from the municipality and province. It also benefited from the new environmental assessment regulations established in 2009, which allow work involving the renewal of existing infrastructure to move forward more quickly.

Municipal officials estimate they saved about 15 per cent of the total cost of the two projects and extended service to more families and vacant lots slated for development. These are "great improvements for the local residents and increase the town's capacity for future growth," says Derrick MacKenzie, Mahone Bay's Director of Operations & Recreation Facilities. The economic benefits of less disruption to tourism traffic were also important to the community.

Federal contribution: $61,250

New bridge brings long awaited permanent fix

The River Bridge in Meteghan

Project location: Meteghan

Route 1, also known as the Evangeline Trail, passes through twelve French-speaking villages between Salmon River and St. Bernard. It is the main highway running from Yarmouth, all the way up the west coast of Nova Scotia.

The River Bridge, located on Route 1 as it passes through Meteghan, carries a steady stream of traffic through this Acadian fishing community. In 2003, the River Bridge partly collapsed. A temporary bridge had to be put in place to sustain traffic flows. With help from the federal government's Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, a permanent bridge is now in place.

The new bridge will safely accommodate the daily commuter and commercial traffic, school buses and emergency vehicles, as well as visitors using the route for years to come.

Federal contribution: $900,000

Better road and safer access along North Street

Project location: Middleton

Nicknamed "the Heart of Annapolis Valley," the Town of Middleton is located half way between Halifax and Yarmouth on the Trans-Canada Highway. Its primary economic base comes from serving the thriving local agricultural industry.

Middleton prides itself on providing its residents and businesses with quality services and amenities. A key part of this is keeping the road infrastructure up to par.

Thanks to a contribution from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, recently completed repairs and upgrades have improved pedestrian safety and water main infrastructure on the town's North Street. Work included widening the road, improving storm-water drainage, and installing new curbs, gutters and sidewalks. Helping this project get off the ground faster was the accelerated federal environmental assessment process that was established in 2009.

Pedestrian movement along North Street has greatly improved, especially for seniors and people with disabilities who needed safer access to and from the town's long-term care facility. Access to this facility has also been improved for emergency vehicles.

Federal contribution: $241,500

Federal Gas Tax Fund helps ensure safer travel in the "Heart of the Valley"

LED traffic lights in Middleton

Project location: Middleton

The picturesque town of Middleton is nestled between two mountains in Nova Scotia's Annapolis County. Its geographical location makes it an ideal service centre for the surrounding agricultural district and its array of community services makes it a desirable place to live.

The town's Marshall Street Bridge provides residents with essential access over Eel Brook, but had deteriorated after 30 years of service. And, like most small rural towns, Middleton's original road plan did not include an electronic traffic signalling system. With pedestrian and vehicular traffic increasing over the years, these became more and more pressing community safety concerns.

To solve these infrastructure issues, Middleton invested part of its annual federal Gas Tax Fund allocations into replacing the bridge and installing the community's first traffic signal.

The new bridge is wider than the previous one, making it easier and safer for both vehicles and pedestrians to cross. The new light-emitting diode (LED) traffic light, located in the centre of town at Commercial and Main, uses very little energy, so the town is modernizing while also being energy efficient.

Middleton is proud to offer residents a high quality of life and these improvements have made living in and visiting what is locally known as the "Heart of the Valley" an even safer experience.

Smooth welcome along Trunk 16

Trunk 16 highway in Monastery

Project location: Monastery

Nova Scotia's Antigonish County is an area rich in natural beauty and history. However, with a regular stream of tourist and commuter traffic passing through the area, keeping roads in good shape is a challenge.

In the Town of Monastery, named for the French monastery established there in 1825, a 5.1-kilometre section of the Trunk 16 highway had severely deteriorated. With rutting, cracking and potholes making it difficult to drive on, the town applied for a funding contribution from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to rehabilitate the road bed.

Their application was successful. Workers restored the highway's pavement and safety from Trunk 4 through to the Guysborough County Line.

Federal contribution: $630,000

Smoother driving on Mount William Road

Mount William Road in Mount William

Project location: Mount William

Mount William is located in Pictou County, an area famous for its scenic parks, lush farmlands and mountaintop views. Keeping roads in good condition is integral to tourism in the area, not to mention maintaining safety for local residents.

Drivers using Mount William Road to get from the Trans-Canada Highway to Granton Abercrombie Roadexperienced a bit of a wild ride before road repairs were completed. Severe cracking, rutting and potholes were significantly increasing the risk of accidents and taking a heavy toll on vehicles.

With 5.3 kilometres of the roadway now repaired, residents and tourists travelling through the area are now enjoying smoother and safer driving conditions. The work has also extended the life of the road by about 15 years and will greatly reduce the need and costs for ongoing maintenance work.

A contribution from the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund was key to getting this project off the ground, along with an equal share from the province.

Federal contribution: $765,000

New facility provides new health and fitness opportunities

Pictou County Wellness Centre

Project location: New Glasgow

Located in central Nova Scotia, Pictou County encompasses the towns of New Glasgow, Pictou, Trenton, Stellarton andWestville, as well as several smaller communities. The area's diverse landscape includes beaches, forests, parks and trails, and provides an ideal natural stage for outdoor recreational fitness activities.

In addition to the many outdoor activities, Pictou County can now also offer a broad range of fitness opportunties at a new indoor recreational facility.

The Wellness Centre boasts state-of-the-art facilities that include two regulation-sized ice surfaces, an aquatic centre, a gymnasium and a fitness centre, as well as multi-purpose space for conferences or community events.

The centre also leases space to the Pictou County YMCA. And since the space is larger than in its previous location, the YMCA was able to expand its own recreational programs and add community child care services, adding further benefits for the region's families.

All told, the Pictou County Wellness Centre lives up to its name and goal of improving the lives of people living in the region. It provides an inspiring new venue where residents of all ages can have fun, stay fit and develop new skills.

Federal financial support from the Major Infrastructure Component of the Building Canada Fund, a matching provincial contribution, along with funding from corporate sponsors; and a well-supported community fundraising campaign made this over $35 million project possible. In-kind contributions from local businesses, community groups and residents also contributed to making it a reality and demonstrate the degree of community support to see it through to completion.

Federal contribution: $11,000,000

Learn more about the Pictou County Wellness Centre from start to finish.

Restoring the road to a great ocean view

Project location: Parker's Cove

Home to the largest and most active fishing fleet in Nova Scotia, Parker's Cove is also an ideal location for watching the sun set over the ocean and tides that come into the Bay of Fundy.

Classified as a minor collector highway, Shore Road West leads directly into Parker's Cove. The road was suffering from severe rutting, cracks and potholes. In the summer of 2009, the federal government supported the Province of Nova Scotia in moving ahead with roadrestoration work through an Infrastructure Stimulus Fund contribution.

Work included gravelling and repaving the surface along eight kilometres from Parker Mountain Road to Hampton Mountain Road. By replacing culverts and renewing road shoulders, road crews have extended the road's lifespan by another 15 years.

The improved road also means faster travel times and less vehicle maintenance for area residents, and a safer, more enjoyable experience for tourists wanting to watch the ebb and flow of tides.

Federal contribution: $1,228,100

Safer road, extended life

Resurfacing 7.9 kilometres of Route 236 from Princeport to nearby Goss Bridge, both to the west of Truro

Project location: Princeport

Route 236 through Nova Scotia's Colchester County connects several very small villages with each other and larger nearby communities. It also provides a rural escape of sorts for tourists wanting to make the connection between the Trans-Canada Highway at nearby Truro and the north shore of Nova Scotia and the famed Annapolis Valley.

Aware of the rutting and cracking that had made parts of Route 236 unsafe, the Nova Scotia Department of Transportation and Infrastructure successfully applied for up to $1,156,500 from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund to help resurface 7.9 kilometres of Route 236 from Princeport to nearby Goss Bridge, both to the west of Truro.

The work involved fixing potholes and cold mill asphalt recycling and repaving. Shoulders have also been repaired. Residents and tourists alike now have a safer road with an estimated expanded life of about 15 years, which should greatly reduce ongoing maintenance in the short to medium term.

Federal contribution: $1,156,500

Preserving Cape Breton's scenic routes

Restored road in Red River

Project location: Red River

Cape Breton Island is world-renowned for its breathtaking coastline and inland trails. A key part of the local economy, tourism has grown steadily in the region since World War II, especially vehicle-based touring drawn by the scenic Cabot Trail drive.

In keeping with this emphasis on picturesque road travel, it is a priority for every community on the Island to keep their roads in good condition. For the community of Red River in Inverness County, the federal Infrastructure Stimulus Fund has helped them maintain this goal.

Red River Road is promoted as a scenic drive for tourists wanting to explore the region's rich heritage. Unfortunely, it was well overdue for some upgrades. Severe rutting, cracks, and potholes had made the route a challenge to drive and was causing safety risks.

With the help of the federal funding, two kilometres of the road have now been restored.

Federal contribution: $405,000

Federal Gas Tax Fund helps community build sustainability

new energy-efficient administration building

Project location: St. Mary's

A new energy-efficient administration building has brought a breath of fresh air to the Municipality of the District of St. Mary's.

The former administration building was more than 135 years old. Poor air quality due to dust, mold, and mildew was a concern. It was also too small and lacked modern energy-saving devices that help keep operating costs down.

Thanks to financial support from the federal Gas Tax Fund, a larger building is now in place that houses public meeting spaces, municipal offices, council chambers, and the local Nova Scotia Emergency Measures Office command centre.

The response to the new building has been overwhelmingly positive from the residents of St. Mary's—a picturesque rural community comprised of farmlands, seaside fishing communities and of acres of forest. Not only does the new building provide almost 517 more square metres of space, it incorporates many eco-friendly features, such as an on-site storm-water management system; energy-efficient lighting, windows, and doors; and a geo-thermal heating and cooling system. Recycled materials were used in the construction of this new community hub.

St. Mary's use of environmental best practices in the design and construction earned the building a Green Globes 3 Certification from the Green Building Initiative, a non-profit organization focused on encouraging the adoption of green building approaches in residential and commercial construction.

By supporting projects like this, the federal Gas Tax Fund is helping municipalities renew their infrastructure in ways that contribute to cleaner air and a more sustainable future for all Canadians.

Wastewater improvements increase potential for community growth

Project location: Springhill

The Town of Springhill, nestled in the Cobequid Mountain Range of northwestern Nova Scotia, prides itself on its rich coal-mining history and stewardship of the environment. The community has worked to sustain its economic base by both leveraging and protecting its surounding environment.

For example, Springhill took steps to ensure its wastewater treatment system was operating effectively and has as little impact as possible on the local environment.

The Government of Canada provided about one third of the needed $1.5 million in funding for the wastewater treatment system upgrades through the Communities Component of the federal Building Canada Fund, with the province providing another third. The municipality used some of its annual federal Gas Tax Fund allocations to fund its share.

Work crews replaced water mains and storm sewers beneath several streets and installed a new ultraviolet disinfection unit at the wastewater treatment plant. Ultraviolet treatment systems require little space, use no hazardous chemicals and are faster than other treatment processes.

These improvements have brought the town's wastewater system up to current environmental standards and will help ensure the system meets the needs of new residents and businesses well into the future.

Federal contribution: $505,500 + Gas Tax funding.

Improving Highway 104

A new bridge, upgraded as part of the improvements to Highway 104 in Tracadie Harbour

Project location: Tracadie Harbour

As one of the main routes through Nova Scotia, Highway 104 gets a lot of wear and tear. From Tracadie Harbour through parts of Aulds Cove, more than nine kilometres of the highway had deteriorated to the point where drivers had to swerve to miss deep cracks and potholes.

Using almost $2 million in federal Infrastructure Stimulus funding, the province has now fixed these problems, greatly improving driver safety and traffic flow. This means fewer greenhouse gas emissions, and lower maintenance costs for both drivers and the province.

The new surface has a lifespan of 15 years.

Federal contribution: $1,980,000

Improving local roads in Yarmouth County

Raynardton Road in Tusket

Project location: Tusket

Founded by Acadians in 1785, Tusket is a small fishing community in Yarmouth County. Among other historic features, it has the oldest standing courthouse in Canada.

Many tourists visit the area for its history, sports fishing and canoeing each year, so keeping local roads in good condition is a priority.

When severe rutting, cracking, and potholes on Raynardton Road compromised driver safety, the road needed fixing. Thanks in part to a federal funding contribution from the Infrastructure Stimulus Fund, the necessary gravelling and repaving is now complete.

The improved road delivers improved safety, faster travel times and less vehicle maintenance for area residents and visitors.

Federal contribution: $450,000

New Weymouth library project complete

The new library in Weymouth

Project location: Weymouth

The historic village of Weymouth is located on the southern edge of Digby County. This picturesque village is characterized by beautifully restored heritage homes, acres of pristine forest and miles of spectacular coastline.

Weymouth and its surrounding communities have experienced economic setbacks in recent years with the loss of its largest employer and the closure of a major downtown retail business. As part of a community effort to revitalize the downtown and waterfront areas, the village now has a new library courtesy of the Building Canada Fund's Communities Component together with provincial and municipal infrastructure funding.

While generating the highest traffic of any rural library in Nova Scotia, the existing facility was inadequate. The new 307 square-metre facility provides a spacious program/community room, more reading areas, high-speed Internet access, a separate children's area, and wheelchair accessible washrooms. It also has twenty-one paved parking spaces, including three for people with disabilities.

The new library's prime downtown location serves as an anchor for the other downtown renewal projects, and its expanded services are helping attract more visitors to the town. The project has also added economic value by supporting the continuing education of the existing workforce and training for new entrants into the workforce.

Federal contribution: $139,300

Shoring up historic site to prevent damage

Project location: Yarmouth, Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia's famed Lighthouse Route begins at the province's second-most photographed lighthouse, the Cape Forchu Lightstation. Located at the tip of scenic Cape Forchu just 10 minutes from Yarmouth, it is the area's first "apple core" style lighthouse and has safely guided vessels into Yarmouth Harbour since 1840.

Surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean on three sides, the land, buildings and roads at the Station endure extreme wave activity and harsh weather.

Rather than let this designated heritage site degrade further and risk closure, Yarmouth's Municipal Council used a financial contribution from the Communities Component of the Building Canada Fund to rehabilitate the site.

The site upgrades, now complete, repaired damaged areas and will help minimize future severe weather damage and water erosion. Drainage waterways have been put in place, electrical components rerouted or moved, and roadways re-engineered. A turning circle and protective rock barrier were also added. Platforms, walkways and viewing stations were rebuilt with more durable modern materials. Better signage helps tourists move safely throughout the site.

These improvements mean the community will continue to shine like a beacon for eastern mariners while preserving, developing and promoting its cultural heritage.

Federal contribution: $822,476

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