Showing posts from February, 2011

DCA Agenda for 2 March 2011

DCA Agenda, March 2nd, 2011 The next meeting of the DCA will be on Wed 3 March, 2011. It will be held at the Dalhousie Community Centre, corner of Empress and Somerset. Our room is on the ground floor, beside the pop machine. Meeting begins at 7.30 and is usually over shortly after 9. Everyone is welcome. Agenda: 1. Soho Italia (high rise intensification). Presentation by and discussion with the architect, Roderick Lahey, and developer representative Jeff Polowin. Our website has some pictures of the proposed development. Please familiarize yourselves with these before coming to the meeting. 20min for presentation, 30 minutes for discussion. 2. Norman street infill (low rise intensification). A local property owner wants to sever the parking lot (access off Norman) behind his existing duplex (which faces Preston), and build 3 apts on the “new” 33’x33’ lot. This removes some off-street private parking and the new units will not have parking. Discuss the merits of the infill,

500 Preston (Soho Italia)

Starwood-Mastercraft proposes a 35 storey condo tower at 500 Preston (corner of Sidney) near Carling Avenue. Here is a view from Carling (the 5-7 storey black podium is a parking garage): Shown below is the building proposed for this site several years ago. The developer of that tower got the site rezoned from six to 24 stories. Shown below is an artists impression of what the area could look like if other properties also were redeveloped to similar size high rises: Here is a neighborhood model prepared by the developer, which can be seen in their Soho Champagne sales office currently on the 500 Preston site:

Preston/Norman infill development application

There is a duplex (four apts) facing Preston at 409-411: Note the garages facing Norman, on the side: The owner proposes to demolish the sheds/back porches on the house, and construct a three storey three-apt building with roof terrace. The new lot would be 33'x33'; and the house will essentially fill it all up. The city turned down the first version of the project, which had a 3 car garage on the ground floor. The site is zoned six stories. Here is the lot plan: And here is what it would look like from Norman Street: you can see more drawings at, enter the address 409-411 Preston, or development number D07-12-11-0006.

Lyon & Gloucester development application

To see more info on this application, go to Here it is in a nutshell. A developer proposes a sixteen storey condo mostly on Gloucester, with a face also onto Lyon. The rest of the block includes a city living (OCH) project at 11 stories, and a new Richcraft building not yet built, at 15 stories. Surrounding high rises vary in height, including 23 and 28 story buildings. Here are some pics:

Albert street reconstruction (ii)

Feb 25, 2011, Letter from Councilor Holmes to Nancy Schepers: As you are aware $610K has been allocated for the design of the Albert St. rehabilitation project (Project # 906056). This integrated project will have an Eastern terminus point of Bronson Ave. It is necessary to see the scope of this project expanded to include the realignment of the Bronson/Albert/Slater intersections, including the necessary funding required for all appropriate studies and Environmental Assessments. As has been discussed previously there is a need to make improvements to the alignment of the Albert/Slater/Bronson intersections. These intersections, in their current alignment are antiquated, inefficient and unsafe for both pedestrians and cyclists. This is problematic, as it has been identified as the primary linkage between the (upper) Escarpment District and the (lower) Lebreton Flats in the Council Approved Escarpment Area District Plan. The (lower) Flats area has seen significant residential red

Albert street reconstruction (i)

Letter to Councilor Holmes re proposed Albert Street reconstruction: DALHOUSIE COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION 755 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 6R1 Eric Darwin, President 18 Feb 2011 Albert Street reconstruction planning: At its last meeting, the DCA agreed to approach you with respect to ensuring that the reconstruction of Albert meets a variety of community and stakeholder needs rather than just the movement of traffic. We ask that you consult with staff at the earlier possible opportunity to ensure that our concerns, outlined below, are included. From the Ottawa budget documents: This project involves the renewal of Albert Street between City Centre Ave & Bronson Ave. The scope of work includes full roadway, curb & sidewalk reconstruction. The existing water mains, valves, hydrants, and lead services will be replaced to the property line. The project will see the existing combined sewer replaced with new separate sanitary & storm sewers. The sewer ho

Mayor Watson reponds to our concerns re UPASS

Thank you for your e-mail about the U-Pass. As you may know, I have been a strong supporter of the U-Pass from the outset. In the coming weeks, we will continue our discussions with CUSA at Carleton University and SFUO at the University of Ottawa in the hope of continuing this important program. The City of Ottawa is firmly committed to providing our student population with a low-cost fare option. We also believe that this program is beneficial in encouraging increased transit use, and I as Mayor sincerely hope it will continue into the future. OC Transpo is currently in discussions with your student association to see if the pilot program can continue after the current agreement expires on June 30, 2011. OC Transpo will be moving to increase fares for adults, students and seniors by an average 2.5% in keeping with City Council's direction for the coming year. As a result, the U-Pass will also increase modestly from $145 to $148.63 for the academic year 2011-2012. I en

Petition to stop the Alta Vista Corridor

Petition against the Alta Vista Highway There's now a petition to oppose the first phase of the Alta Vista Corridor road. The DCA shares the concerns of many that we don't need more roads in the downtown neighborhoods nor the inner suburbs. They merely encourage / enable more car traffic to the detriment of a denser, more pedestrian friendly city. After all, all those cars have to get to and from the new road link. Here is a petitition to help stop the Alta Vista highway: In this article: Councillor Hume is quoted as saying that opposition is “nowhere near a tidal wave.” We need a tidal wave.

Planning Act Sec 37

Two board members of the DCA went to Toronto with Councilor Holmes and others to learn more about Sec 37 of the planning act. Here is the report from Catherine Boucher: SECTION 37 COMMUNITY BENEFITS Report to DCA by C. Boucher February 2, 2011 The City is in the process of reviewing the Secondary Plan for Centretown as it relates to the Mid-Centretown area (Kent to Elgin, Gloucester to Q’way) . The CDP is expected to be submitted to City Council along with a revised Secondary Plan (The Centretown Plan) and accompanying zoning. Part of the work of the PCG is to look at Section 37 of the Planning Act to see whether we want to insert Community Benefits into a revised Secondary Plan for Centretown. Section 37 of the Planning Act provides a tool for municipalities to extract benefits from developers when they apply for changes in zoning, or increases in height or density from what is permitted under existing zoning The City has adopted into its Official Plan (OP) the following

DCA supports UPass program

The following letter was sent to various city councilors on 8 Feb 2011: Dear Councilor Deans, I am writing to you in your capacity as Chair of the Transit Commission to express the Dalhousie Community Association’s (DCA) support for the U-Pass program at the University of Ottawa and Carleton University. The DCA has heard from proponents of the U-Pass and passed a motion to support the continuation of the program at its February 2 meeting. It is our understanding that OC Transpo has estimated the cost of the program to be $3 million in lost fare revenue per year. While the DCA is not in a position to determine the accuracy of the lost fare revenue estimate, it is essential that any calculation of the costs or benefits of the program be broadened to include its effect on traffic congestion. The U-Pass is currently being used by nearly 50,000 students in Ottawa. It is our understanding that car trips by Carleton University students alone has decreased by over 7000 per day. The ef

DCA objects to Soho Italia

Councilor Diane Holmes Councilor Peter Hume Councilor Katherine Hobbs                            8 Feb 2011 Re: the Soho Italia proposal by Starwood Mastercraft, 500 Preston Street The Dalhousie Community Association (DCA) discussed this project at the 2 Feb 2011 meeting and unanimously agreed that it is objectionable on numerous grounds. Firstly, the City is supposed to plan for its future using an Official Plan, supported by lower level plans. Neither the OP nor the CDP for the area call for high rises at the south end of Preston Street. Indeed, the zoning for the Carling and O-Train corridors was recently revised by the City as part of the CDP. And the CDP itself is still ongoing, a work in progress. Surely the correct planning procedure would be for the developer to request an amendment to the OP or similar neighborhood wide rezoning if they desire to promote a “Vancouver style” collection of tall condo towers. Instead, they are asking for a one-off rezoning, which will u

Dalhousie Report for Feb 2011

The board of the Dalhousie Community Association met on February 2 for their monthly meeting. The west side of the downtown continues to abound in interesting developments. Somerset/ Booth Condo: presentation by developer Board members met in December with the proponents of a six floor condo for the now-vacant lot at the corner of Somerset and Booth. In response to our concerns about shading, their 12 month study shows shadow impacts on properties to the north for only about two hours at midday, for about 2 weeks in winter solstice, ie it is a fairly minimal impact. The developer has also changed the two-lane garage entrance to a one-lane, two-way ramp, which reduces the impact on Somerset Street and the sidewalk. They have also pushed back the main floor by one foot to allow room for a green edge along the sidewalk. As per our suggestion, the western balconies were re-arranged to break up the flat planes of the building and improve the western end. For the exterior, the develope

DCA Agenda for 2 Feb 2011

Dca agenda 2 Feb 2011. Locale: Dal.Community Centre, corner of Empress at Somerset, 7.30pm; ground floor (by the pop machine). Times shown below are just to help in planning the meeting 1. Presentation on the proposed condo building at the corner of Somerset/Booth. This proposal has been revised to address (some) of our concerns previously expressed. Some new drawings and options. 7.30 – 8pm 2. Catherine and Charles went to Toronto to attend a Sec 37 meeting (municipal tradeoffs for additional height and density to developers). Report on what they learned, and motion to reimburse some funds. 8 – 8.15 3. Soho italia: brief review of the project. Eric is meeting with developers on Tuesday Feb 1st but developers have elected not to meet with the DCA at this time. To see developer’s package of drawings, go to Other posts the days before and after the one above, detail the proposal and its ramifica