HALIFAX - Metro Transit staffers are sniffing around the possibility of allowing dogs on the harbour ferries.
© Metro Halifax/Jeff Harper
The Metro Transit ferry.
The suggestion was one of several that emerged from the recent ‚ÄúDowntown‚Ä¶I‚Äôm In!‚ÄĚ public event, during which Halifax residents offered ideas for making the urban core more liveable.
‚ÄúI understand the impetus behind why somebody would want to do that‚Ä¶ the question is, can we do it,‚ÄĚ said Metro Transit director - and dog owner - Eddie Robar.
Service dogs are currently allowed on HRM buses and ferries, as is any dog or animal that‚Äôs contained in a crate.
Robar said transit staff is investigating ways to mitigate logistical concerns around larger leashed animals ‚Äď such as allergies, space and behaviour ‚Äď in an effort to bring more people from Dartmouth to the downtown core.
‚ÄúThere‚Äôs good walking paths and a great boardwalk and things like that on the other side of the harbour,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúObviously people would want to interact with that and take their pets and animals with them as well.‚ÄĚ
Robar said the review, expected later this year, will examine transit practices in Canada and around the globe.
‚ÄúPeople do it around the world, and the question is how do they do it,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúThere‚Äôs great opportunity with it, that‚Äôs for sure.‚ÄĚ
The list of suggestions that emerged from the public sessions will be presented, along with a response from staff, to the municipal Community Planning and Economic Development (CPED) committee on Thursday.
The ideas address everything from better street lighting to improved bike infrastructure to oversized game boards in public spaces.
Some of the suggestions are already being addressed or will be addressed this year, according to the staff report, while others ‚Äď such as dog-friendly ferries ‚Äď will need further study.
The complete ‚ÄúDowntown‚Ä¶I‚Äôm in!‚ÄĚ report can be found on the HRM website.