Are you looking at locating or doing business in the Halifax region? Consider Sheet Harbour.
Sheet Harbour is a good place in which to live work raise a family and eventually retire. The community is nestled among a multitude of other smaller coves and inlets along the eastern shore of Nova Scotia. In addition to being a friendly community Sheet Harbour offers its residents a low cost of living very low crime rates and access to a wide variety of recreational amenities.
Sheet Harbour is a community of about 800 people located within the Halifax Regional Municipality on the eastern shore of Nova Scotia.The catchment area around Sheet Harbour is approximately 5 000 people.This is the population that comes to Sheet Harbour to work shop or use the regional health and educational facilities.
An important part of any business decision to locate in a specific community is the availability of a good pool of local workers. Employees are drawn to communities that have a good mix of recreational and entertainment opportunities. Because Sheet Harbour is a rural community it cannot provide access to a wide range of services that might be found in a larger urban area. However there are some facilities and activities in the local area and residents are also within a reasonable drive of three urban markets: Halifax, Truro and New Glasgow/Stellarton. A key advantage to living in the Sheet Harbour region is the availability of eco ‐tourism activities. The area is a playground for nature lovers. It is a world of coastal beauty with unspoiled beaches and tidal inlets and salt marshes with birds and wildlife. The diverse coastline is a world ‐class destination for sea kayakers and the seaside parks provide picnic facilities and superb hiking trails at some of Nova Scotia ’s finest sand beaches. Inland there is a vast but accessible wilderness whose lakes and rivers are legendary with anglers and paddlers.
The community of Sheet Harbour has always been the commercial centre of the Eastern Shore.The economy is based on forestry, fishing, tourism and local commercial services. Sheet Harbour also boasts an Industrial Port and Industrial Park. Sheet Harbour is also the commercial and services centre of the larger region. People come to the community from a wide area to access the regional health care facility, shopping and other services. In addition to recreation ‐based activities Sheet Harbour is also home to a good complement of community services.
The Eastern Shore Memorial Hospital offers a wide variety of health care services ranging from emergency room care to specialized clinics.The community also features a Fitness Centre a community library and several C@P sites (public Internet access). Sheet Harbour is the base for regional primary and secondary education.
- Sheet Harbour Public Library. Download a .pdf file
- Sheet Harbour Recreation Centre
- Seacoast Trail Arts Association
In recent years the community has been witnessing a slow decline in its population. The Sheet Harbour Chamber would like to change this and have a vision of the community as a growing and dynamic regional economy on the eastern shore of Nova Scotia. Sheet Harbour has strong economic and social links with the urban Halifax region and is also uniquely positioned within a short commute of both the New Glasgow/Stellarton and Truro areas of Nova Scotia.This geographic proximity coupled with a year round deep water port provides Sheet Harbour with an interesting value proposition for companies that are looking to expand their business. Opportunities exist in forestry, mining, fishing and energy production. In addition service ‐based companies such as customer contact centres back offices and information technology firms are increasingly looking at rural communities to locate their facilities. Locating in Sheet Harbour would provide competitive operating costs and quality of life balance . Employees are also now placing more emphasis on quality of life and Sheet Harbour offers an unmatched environment for people looking for a pristine and beautiful location in which to live and work.
A number of firms have already started to take advantage of the opportunities presented by Sheet Harbour.Northern Fibre Terminal Incorporated (NFTI)chose Sheet Harbour as the site for its processing and shipping facility because of its deep ice ‐free harbor, quality workforce and competitive cost environment. Shaw and Shaw Ltd used the community to complete a pipe ‐coating project, creating an estimated 110 jobs to construct the concrete coating for the approximately 175 ‐km Deep Panuke natural gas pipeline.
Sheet Harbour sits at a crossroads that is within a short commute to many of the province ’s population centres. Halifax, Stellarton, Truro, New Glasgow and Antigonish are all within a 1 to 1.5 hours drive of downtown Sheet Harbour. In addition the ice free Port of Sheet Harbour is a short 80 kms from Great Circle Route between North America and Europe.The Port has been used by a number of firms for shipping product to market and as a staging area for the Sable Island natural gas development. Sheet Harbour is also a short commute from the Halifax Robert L. Stanfield International Airport which is located about 100 kilometers (63 miles) from the community. The airport provides multiple daily flights to numerous Canada, U.S.and European locations.
The community of Sheet Harbour is the commercial and service centre of the Eastern Shore region of Nova Scotia. There are a number of government offices, health care services and education facilities in the community. In addition Sheet Harbour offers a variety of retail food service and accommodation facilities. Sheet Harbour and its neighbouring communities also have forestry, fishery and manufacturing activities. There is also a considerable trucking and distribution sector in the region.
Community Religious Organizations
- Kingdom Hall Of Jehovah Witness, 23844 Highway 7, Sheet Harbour
- Living Water Fellowship Baptist Church, PO Box 147,Sheet Harbour, NS B0J 3B0
- St. Andrew’s Anglican Church, 155 St. Andrews Loop, Watt Section, Sheet Harbour
- St. James United Church, 22 Sprott Lane, Sheet Harbour
- St. Michael’s Anglican Church, 22305 Hwy #7, Sheet Harbour
- St. Peters Catholic Church, 43 St Peters Loop RR # 1, Sheet Harbour
The region continues to benefit from a strong fisheries industry. Just down the road in Ship Harbour the Aqua Prime Mussel Ranch has a thriving blue mussels and sea scallops aquaculture operation. In addition the firm supports fisheries ‐based tourism by opening up in the summer for tours. Northern Fibre Terminal Incorporated operates a state ‐of ‐the ‐art terminal at the Port of Sheet Harbour that includes a scale and unloading facilities for trucks delivering roundwood and chips as well as a debarker a chipper, a storage facility, a laboratory for monitoring chip quality and a conveyor system for loading chips at dockside.
The cost of land for industrial and commercial use in the Sheet Harbour region can range between $2 000 and $40 000/acre. This is well below the urban area. Construction costs for new facilities would be similar in Sheet Harbour as in the urban Halifax area. Property tax rates are slightly lower in rural HRM than the urban area.More importantly commercial building values are lower (overall) bringing down the total property tax bill for companies that locate in the Sheet Harbour region.
Sheet Harbour launched a Community First in North America to install cutting-edge acid rain technology for the West River Salmon Initiative in September, 2005, utilizing a sophisticated Norwegian “lime doser” that has a proven success record of revitalized rivers damaged by acid rain. Populations of wild salmon in rivers throughout eastern North America are in severe decline, and one of the key elements in this decline is the impact of acid rain on spawning rivers. Nova Scotia alone has seen a 75% decrease in its salmon runs over the past few decades. The most immediate beneficiaries of the plan will be the endangered wild Atlantic salmon in West River. The Nova Scotia Salmon Association, a conservation group that spearheaded the drive to bring the doser to the area, said, “Our immediate focus is on wild Atlantic salmon preservation, but this technology has enormous possibilities right across eastern North America – from St. John’s to Thunder Bay to New York. A lot of environmental problems at times seem simply too big and complex to get a handle on. But, when it comes to protecting our lakes and rivers from acid rain, we’re seeing part of the solution right here in Sheet Harbour, largely as a result of community and volunteer action. It’s a North American ‘first’, and it’s a vital first step.”
Sheet Harbour’s lime doser was acquired from the Miljøkalk company in Norway, who provided the infrastructure and engineering services. The automated system draws river water into the doser, combines it with powdered limestone, and releases it further downstream. The doser is programmed to respond to the rivers acidity levels, providing a consistent 5.5 pH reading, regardless of the seasonal water fluctuations.
For more information including career and employer resource assistance see our business development opportunities page