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Usually when NosyNeighbour and I go for a walk in the hood, he‘s the one sticking his head in behind closed doors to ask whazzup. Today it was my turn. We walked down to MEC, warmed up inside, then turned back to walk past what I had believed to be the site of the future Churchill Arms.

The blue tarp was off the western half of the construction site, and we looked in through the windows at a long narrow hallway and narrowish retail space. But next door was where all the action was. The windows were newspapered over, and for some region NosyNeighbour didn’t want to walk in, even though the door was unlocked.

So I walked in and saw two guys busy working, running wires and such. “Hey guys,” I said. “Just wondering what’s going in here.” And here’s what I learned: Read the rest of this entry »

I’ve been meaning to post this for a while. I signed up for email updates from both Live Q West and the neighbourhood group who oppose the development.

But before I copy the latest from each side, I’m going to give my opinion on the development of that section of Richmond Road, then include the latest from the two sides.

  • I have always found that stretch of Richmond really creepy. When the Canadian Tire was located there, I dreaded walking¬† at night because it was so isolated: empty used car lot with a burnt out shack on one side and a stretch of wall on the other side.
  • If the neighbourhood was so concerned about the historical significance of this property, why did they wait until it was sold to seek this designation? The nuns, before they left, painted over the frescos on the inside of the chapel and sold off a marble staircase. As a buyer, you would think that a staircase would be included in the price, no?
  • It's not a park ... it's a path.

    Tramway Linear Park is not a park. It is a pathway used by dogwalkers, families going to the playground near Granville, and cyclists.

  • The city calls it consider it to be a true shared pathway because it is not wide enough, and therefore does not have the yellow line down the middle. I will point out that some dogwalkers use the area between Bassett and Byron as a dog park, even though there are signs indicating that dogs must be leashed.
  • This area already has a lot of green space: 11 hectares at Hampton Park and the greenspace along the Ottawa River Pathway (owned by the NCC) and Westboro Beach (run by the city).
  • I do not support a levy to purchase land back from a developer. The city had its opportunity to buy the land and decided it couldn’t afford to bid at the time of the sale. Nothing has changed, except NIMBYism and BANANAism have arrived in Hampton Park, Wellington West and Westboro.
  • People tend to walk to local parks, if they use them at all. Parks tend to be frequented either by families or dog walkers. A park in that location will only be used by those in the immediate vicinity (i.e. the occupants of the new development) and benefit those living close by who are opposed to an entrance on Byron.¬† As a result, if the ward buys the land, the developer will be able to sell the units as being close to a park.
  • I recognize that Ashcroft doesn’t have the greatest reputation as a builder. However, when they hear constructive suggestions on how to improve a development they will listen. When all they hear is “we don’t want it” and “it’s too tall” and “it’s ugly” they stop listening, just as most people will do when listening to constant criticism instead of constructive feedback. Ashcroft did change the look of 101 Richmond based on the only constructive comments during one meeting at St. George’s church.
  • I like the design of the site so far. It keeps the convent cloistered. Let’s face it, nobody really saw it as they drove or walked along Richmond before. Why change that now?

So here’s the latest from the developer, including photos of the latest rendering: Read the rest of this entry »

Yesterday as we strolled the Hintonburg, we discovered an interesting infill project at the corner of Armstrong and Pinhey:

Infill at Armstrong and Pinhey

We took a stroll around the five individual three-storey homes and were impressed. They all seem to have sunlight, and while they are a bit close together, the windows mean you’re not looking directly into someone else’s home.

This is what was there previously (thanks to google streetview):

Armstrong and Pinhey (before)

A crane has finally appeared at the Wellington at Island Park site. We were taking a walk anyways, so I brought the camera along for some pics:

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Just received this e-mail from the Wellington West BIA:

Public meeting on small scale-infill development

Event Date: February 17, 2011

Event Time: 7 pm to 9 pm

Location: Connaught Public School, 1149 Gladstone Avenue

Link: www.ottawa.ca/infill

Notice of Public Meeting from Ward Councillor Katherine Hobbs:

“Kitchissippi is the fastest growing central area in Ottawa, and the results aren’t always pretty. In my first two months as a councillor, intensification and its effects have been a top concern for residents in the ward.

“This is why I was thrilled to learn that the City’s Planning and Growth Management Department will be holding meetings on small scale residential infill development with the public, including one in Kitchissippi on February 17th at 7-9 PM at Connaught Public School, 1149 Gladstone Avenue.

“Staff will give a presentation and are asking residents to provide feedback on the survey of infill development the city has undertaken. Aesthetic, Social and Environmental concerns will be discussed and your solutions to the challenges of infill development will be recorded.

“The evening will be a great opportunity for all of us concerned with the direction and character of residential infill to voice our concerns and engage with staff to direct future infill towards a better result for our communities. This is especially important as we work towards a review of the Official Plan in 2012.

“There are three other sessions, but they will all be the same, so you only need to attend one. Learn more about this unique opportunity at ottawa.ca/infill” (Please see the link above.)

So I know it’s another walk west, but I couldn’t resist because it was such a sunny day. It’s also a nice walk along the path. I’m even tempted to do the same walk with snowshoes strapped on today because of all the fresh powder.

Without further delay, more pics of developments in Westboro: Read the rest of this entry »

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