Downtown Halifax is the heart of Atlantic Canada's big city. It represents the true essence of a port city where a distinct history meets a new world. The centre of constant activity from service and retail to industry and shipping, Downtown Halifax is a place where constant change lives hand-in-hand with a strong sense of our past.
Halifax was built around our Downtown from the beginning. The first sketched plan for the city was drawn by Moses Harris in 1749 and centred around what is now Canada’s oldest public square: Grand Parade.
The Parade is bordered by historic Barrington and Argyle Streets – today as then, an epicentre for over 400 restaurants, pubs, retailers, and service providers – and on either end are Halifax City Hall to the north, built in 1887, and Saint Paul’s Anglican Church, which has been on the south of Grand Parade since the very beginning. The streets and architecture of Downtown Halifax are rich in history and alive in character.
The living Waterfront in Downtown Halifax is a daily reminder that our city was born as an international port of sail. Our Waterfront boardwalk is over four kilometres long and home to several restaurants, shops, attractions, and constant activity. Amid the hustle and bustle, including over 200,000 cruise ship passengers every year, the Port of Halifax remains a working transport hub generating over $1.5 billion in economic impact and handling over 1,500 vessels annually. It is also proudly home to Canada’s East Coast Navy.
A colourful and gritty history of barmaids and sailors echoes through the historic buildings that now set the stage for a thriving and modern business community, with many of the buildings still housing their original occupants. One fine example is Keith Hall and Brewery. Built in 1820, the building displays the industrious spirit of Nova Scotia as even today it remains home to Alexander Keith's Nova Scotia Brewery, along with modern office suites, restaurants, shops, and creative studios.
The vibrancy of Downtown Halifax is a reflection of the people who work here and who call it home. With Maritime hospitality engrained in our culture, expect the best service and the best company, paired with Nova Scotia’s booming local culinary, craft beer, and wine scenes.
About Downtown Halifax Business Commission (DHBC)
DHBC is the voice and resource for the businesses located in the central business district of Halifax, Nova Scotia. A not-for-profit organization, we run many programs, events, and marketing initiatives to make Downtown Halifax a better place to live, work, and play.
DHBC provides our membership with a collective voice at the table on all major issues concerning Downtown Halifax, including development, heritage preservation, all levels of government, the media, and other stakeholders.
Canada's Favourite downtown.
To passionately pursue a more prosperous and vibrant Downtown, through: Downtown Mobility, Good Development, Downtown Placemaking, DHBC Leadership, and Members Services.
Annual Report 2021-2022 (3.6 PDF)
Annual Report 2021 (12.6MB PDF)
DHBC Strategic Plan Report Card 2019-2020 (7.6 MB PDF)
Annual Report 2019-2020 (4 MB PDF)
Annual Report 2018-2019 (1.8 MB PDF)
30th Anniversary Highlights (2.2 MB PDF)
The DHBC team is a small and mighty bunch, who work on behalf of our members and Board of Directors.
DHBC represents all organizations, including property owners and tenants, located in the area between the Halifax Waterfront and the water side of Brunswick Street, and between the Cogswell Interchange and the south end of Barrington Street. Our membership is approximately 1,600 strong.