Planning Cttee: 801 Albert Street

801 Albert Street is the triangle of land bounded by the City Centre Complex, Albert Street, and the Otrain corridor. It is presently a "hole", that is, it appears to be significantly lower than the surrounding properties. Phoenix owns it, and has come foreward with numerous redevelopment proposals, all of which have been lacking in merit. Granted, it is a very difficult site to develop, with many easements and utility lines crossing it. The City is now examining the utilties in the area as part of the Bayview-Carling CDP; it may be possible to realign some of them (but at great cost).

In their prior proposal, Phoenix wanted two condo towers and a four floor office building, all on one podium structure level with Albert Street. Building the garage would prevent the city from replacing the sewers some day, so they turned down the idea of a single podium structure. Now Phoenix is proposal three separate podiums, leaving the sewer rights of way open to the air. The City is recommending it be rejected, as it divides up the parcel into awkward pieces.

Here is our letter:

Planning Committee

Re: 27 April 2010: zoning – 801 Albert Street

Dear Sir/Madam

The Dalhousie Community Association supports the eventual development of this site. The development could be high density suitable for its proximity to a major transit hub. The current Phoenix proposal falls far short of the site’s potential and should be rejected. The buildings should be adjacent the sidewalk, parking should be underground, it should be pedestrian and transit focused (not parking garage and surface lots), its prominent location merits the very highest architectural and planning endeavor.

The Association calls on the city to make every effort to promptly resolve the issues of the utilities crossing the site and the city’s need for future access for repair and replacements. Rather than having the proponent come back repeatedly with proposals for the site, we encourage the city to work collaboratively with the developer to find a suitable development track.

 Update: the City agreed, and turned down the Phoenix proposal 28 April 2010.


  1. This area is prime for an imaginative re-developement. Use of the land is ideal for mixed use and should include a properly planned park/recreation area for all Ottawans to share and enjoy.

    It could be an example of a design in sustainability. I am glad to hear the City has so far demanded more from the developer.

    Let us see how Phoenix responds...

    Rob Dekker


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