Halifax developer Wadih Fares on life, legacy and the importance of paying it forward

Posted on May 05, 2021 | By Alec Bruce | 0 Comments

Ten years ago, Wadih Fares was an inspiration for a new generation of Halifax builders. The builders have grown and so has Fares. And he’s still an inspiration.

Few things make Wadih Fares want to rise and shine more than a Halifax skyline in the morning.

“I look back 10 years ago at the size of our company,” said the 60-something construction and real estate entrepreneur (and 2012 Atlantic Business Magazine Hall of Fame inductee), who was born and raised in Lebanon. “We had probably 20 staff; now, that’s around 50. We own over 1,200 units. Right now, between my development and my clients’ development, we have up on our design board over $1-billion worth of construction projects. It’s really staggering.”

That’s one word for it. On the other hand, he said, “I was always very positive about Halifax. I always saw this as a city that can be. And look where it is today. Our population is increasing. Actually, I’m not really surprised where the city is today. In 10 years, it’ll probably be double the size.”

If it is, chances are WM Fares Group will have had more than a little to do with the transformation. The company—offering construction and property management as well as building design—and the city seem to fit, hand in glove.

According to a report published last year by the city’s economic development agency, the Halifax Partnership, Halifax had four consecutive years of record population growth. Almost 10,000 newcomers were added to the city between July 1, 2018 and June 30, 2019. And Statistics Canada figures showed Halifax was the third-fastest growing city in the country.

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