Take the stairs

Stairs are everywhere, but some stairs are more notice-worthy than others. Here are some staircases that made me stop and smile, or scratch my head.

At the West End Mall, in Halifax, a remarkable staircase connects one parking lot to another parking lot. Not a good sign that there are mirrors so you can see if anyone is lurking around the corner. This is designed in a style sometimes described as Soviet Era.

Much less foreboding is a little hill climb from Barrington Street up into the Canadian Forces Base.

This could be the most intriguing architecture in the Bayers Lake business park.

It’s a long climb up a crane at the Halterm Container Terminal, but the repetition and the colour are splendid.

The monumental staircase at Fire Station Three on West Street is now gone. What a loss. I guess it was a combination hose tower and training facility, but it could have been a landmark and striking memorial to our firefighters. Imagine it with dramatic lighting, and firemen singing fire-themed music from Die Walküre.

In Yarmouth’s Mountain Cemetery there are several of these little nineteenth-century (I assume) cast iron staircases. Pure joy for this iron enthusiast, although not exactly a stairway to heaven.

Our cove is near York Redoubt, a fortification at the entrance to Halifax Harbour. Sort of hidden at one edge of the Parks Canada site is this sublime little set of stairs carved into the granite bedrock. The sort of thing you’d expect to find in a Japanese garden.

Another use of local granite are these front steps to a house on North Park Street.

Here are stairs we use every day, that connect two levels in our garden. They were designed by our friend Ken Shannik and give us enduring pleasure.

About the author

Stephen Archibald

It’s Stephen Archibald doing the noticing. I’m a huge fan of Nova Scotia’s material culture and cultural landscapes. Twitter (@Cove17 ) made me realize I could share what attracted my attention (perfect for my very short attention) and I’m gratified when folks enjoy my content. Pleased to meet you on the internet.