This case was heard in the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal.
The numbered company 3021386 Nova Scotia Ltd. purchased property from the Municipality of the District of Barrington. Before the numbered company purchased the property, it had been the site of the Barrington Municipal High School and had been managed and controlled by the Tri-County Regional School Board. The purchased property did not include the soccer field beside the school.
There were two water wells on the premises: one beneath the soccer field and one beneath the courtyard. When the company purchased the property, both the company and the Municipality believed that the courtyard well was the one supplying water to the school; however, it was later discovered that water was actually being supplied by the soccer field well. As the numbered company carried out a development project on the property it had purchased, it destroyed the piping that connected the courtyard well to the school. It later claimed that the soil and water in the courtyard were contaminated with hydrocarbons, and it claimed an implied easement (a right of way) to use the soccer field well. The Municipality disputed the company’s claim to an implied easement, and the matter came to court.
After considering the terms under which the property had been sold and purchased, and after considering the scant evidence of hydrocarbon contamination in the courtyard, the Court held that there was no implied easement. Access to the soccer field well was not necessary for the numbered company’s reasonable enjoyment of its property, as the company could source its water from its own property without substantial inconvenience.
When the numbered company appealed to the Nova Scotia Court of Appeal, the Court held that the lower court had not erred in its application of the law and had not made any “palpable and overriding” errors in its factual findings. For these reasons, the Court affirmed the lower court’s decision and dismissed the numbered company’s appeal.
To read related decisions, go to:
3021386 Nova Scotia Ltd. v. Barrington (District), 2010 NSSC 173 (CanLII)
3021386 Nova Scotia Ltd. v. Barrington (Municipality), 2014 NSSC 1 (CanLII)
3021386 Nova Scotia Ltd. v. Barrington (Municipality), 2014 NSSC 313 (CanLII)