Art Barry, QC

General Counsel

part of the team

Art draws on more than 30 years of practice including over 25 years of experience in representing clients in the construction industry to provide practical and effective advice from project inception, through contract development and drafting, procurement, course-of-construction problem-solving and where necessary, the dispute resolution process. Clients in the highly competitive world of construction are focused on winning and executing successful and profitable projects. Art takes pride in being a part of his clients' team working to achieve that result.  

Representative matters

Art’s construction practice has included services for a wide range of clients including clients involved in the power industry, commercial construction, heavy civil works, construction insurance and hospital construction. Representative work includes:

  • Drafting procurement documents, advising on all aspects of tendering and RFPs, and representing clients on tendering/RFP disputes.
  • Preparing and negotiating design and construction contracts of all types, including stipulated price, design-build/EPC, EPCM, architectural services, civil works, construction management and trade contracts.
  • Acting for clients in construction mediation, arbitration and court litigation. His early experience includes acting as co-counsel in a number of major construction cases before the Courts involving hotel construction (extras and delays), a warehouse roof collapse and airport hotel construction (labour and material payment bond claim).
  • Acting as co-counsel for the turnkey EPC contractor in a $70 million dispute arising out of a turnkey design-build project for construction of a 165 MW power plant (1993-2002)
  • Acting for a major energy company on a $50MM+ delay in start-up insurance claim.
  • Drafting contracts for a $45 million commercial office building project.
  • Drafting standard construction contracts (including fixed price, design-build, general construction/construction management and procurement documents) for a national commercial construction program with over $300MM in value.
  • Drafting an EPCM contract for a major plant conversion.

Areas of practice

  • Construction Law
  • Public and Private Procurement
  • Professional Responsibility and Ethics
  • Litigation


New Brunswick, 1988
Nova Scotia, 1984


Nova Scotia Barristers' Society


University of New Brunswick, LL.B., 1983
University of New Brunswick, B.A. (honours), 1980




  • Member, Canadian Bar Association
  • President, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, 2017 - present
  • General counsel, Stewart McKelvey, 2008-present
  • Litigation practice manager, Halifax, Stewart McKelvey, 2003-2008
  • Chair, National Construction Law Section, Canadian Bar Association, 1998-1999
  • Past chair, National Construction Law Section, Canadian Bar Association, 1998-2000
  • Vice-chair (1996-1997); Secretary/Treasurer (199501996) National Construction Law Section, Canadian Bar Association
  • Fellow, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, inducted May 2005
  • Governor, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, Appointed June, 2011
  • Chair, Construction Documents Committee, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, 2009-present
  • Member, Legal Update Committee, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, 2007-2014
  • Secretary, Executive Committee, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers, 2014-2015
  • Member, Code of Professional Conduct Committee, Nova Scotia Barristers' Society, 2013-present




Construction Law
Litigation - Commercial Insurance


BV Distinguished®

Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the anonymous opinions of members of the bar and the judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell® Peer Review Ratings™ fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.


  • Best Lawyers 2017 Construction Law "Lawyer of the Year" in Halifax
  • Best Lawyers: Construction Law, 2006, 2008-2018
  • Best Lawyers: Corporate and Commercial Litigation, 2012-2018
  • Who’s Who Legal: Canada 2012, 2014-2016 (Construction)


  • Co-author, Nova Scotia chapter, The Design/Build Process: A Guide to Licensing and Procurement Requirements in the 50 States and Canada, 1997, Forum on the Construction Industry, American Bar Association


  • Presenter, Risk Management in Procurement: A 2014 Primer, All Ships Rise Conference, Halifax WTCC, 2014
  • Author and presenter, "Principles of Contract Interpretation", 2013, Canadian Bar Association, Nova Scotia branch
  • Presenter, Progressive Homes v. Lombard General Insurance, Canadian Defence Lawyers, Moncton, June 2011
  • Presenter, Joint Defence Agreements, 2008 CBA National Construction Law Section
  • Presenter, “CCDC2 – 2008 Standard Form Stipulated Price Contract”, The Fundamentals of Construction Contracts:  Understanding the Issues Conference, Halifax, December, 2008
  • Presenter, “Construction Contracts”, 2008 Negotiating Major Business Agreements Insight Conference, Halifax, March, 2008
  • Contributor, “Construction Risk in Public-Private Partnerships in Canada”, Canadian College of Construction Lawyers Conference, June 2006
  • Presenter, “Scope Disputes in Design-Build Contracts”, National Construction Law Section CLE Program, Canadian Bar Association, Halifax, May 2004
  • Presenter, “Commercial Reality and Builders’ Risk Insurance: Judicial Limits on Subrogation”, Lexpert Conference: “Construction Disputes: Who Gets What?”, Halifax, October 2000

Suite 900
Purdy's Wharf Tower One
1959 Upper Water Street
Halifax, NS, Canada
B3J 3N2

P 902.420.3364
F 902.420.1417

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Heidi Butler

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