DALHOUSIE COMMUNITY ASSOCIATION

755 Somerset Street West, Ottawa, Ontario, K1R 6R1

 

 
 
We  hope  that  you  have  had  a  chance  to  review  the  two  proposals  for  the  redevelopment  of  Lebreton  
Flats.  If  not,  you  can  view  details  of  both  online  via  the  National  Capital  Commission’s  website  until  
February  8th.  The  DCA  will  explore  opportunities  for  hosting  materials  for  review  after  that  date.  
 
The  official  public  consultation  continues  until  February  8th  online.  The  questions  are  straightforward,  
and  they  ask  what  you  think  about  each  of  the  proposals  and  general  overall  comments.  
 
It’s  important  that  you  take  the  time  to  express  your  concerns  and  what  you  would  like  to  see  at  Lebreton  
Flats  through  this  process.  It  is  the  primary  way  that  we  can  signal  to  the  NCC  and  proponents  what  we  
are  looking  for  in  the  eventual  development.    
 
Remember:  what  we’ve  seen  so  far  are  proposals,  and  may  change  a  great  deal  even  before  a  winner  is  
selected.    
 
The  DCA  will  not  be  advocating  for  one  proponent  or  another,  but  does  believe  that  the  following  issues  
must  be  considered  and  reflected  in  whatever  proposal  is  selected.  
 
Below  are  elements  that  we  will  be  highlighting  to  the  NCC,  the  proponents,  and  other  decision  makers.  If  
you  are  interested,  please  feel  free  to  use  this  to  help  guide  your  comments.    
 
Need  for  Ongoing  Dialog  
 
The  NCC  should  require  the  successful  proponent  to  establish  a  working  group  with  relevant  community  
stakeholders  to  address  the  integration  and  development  of  the  area.  This  program  will  last  decades.  
Engaging  the  community  on  an  ongoing  basis  as  it  evolves  will  be  part  of  its  success.  
 
Treat  Lebreton  Flats  as  a  “Vertical  Subdivision”.  
 
Regardless  of  which  proponent  is  selected,  thousands  of  new  units  will  be  added  to  Lebreton  Flats.  
Normally,  when  Ottawa  considers  a  development  of  this  scale,  developers  are  required  to  include  space  
for  essential  public  services,  like  schools,  community  facilities,  and  greenspace.  There  needs  to  be  space  
for  all  road  users.    
 
Our  belief  is  that  the  same  requirements  should  be  made  for  Lebreton  Flats.  It  will  be,  in  effect  a  “vertical  
subdivision”,  and  proponents  should  have  firm  commitments  for  each.  
 
The  items  below  are  a  more  detailed  consideration  of  this  larger  principle.  
 
Community  Integration  

The  development  must  include  a  substantial  portion  of  affordable  housing,  meeting  or  exceeding  
Ottawa’s  official  plan  target  of  25%.  This  must  include  a  mix  of  housing  types  and  sizes  to  
accommodate  families  and  be  a  component  during  all  phases  of  development.  
• It  is  important  that  there  be  space  for  essential  public  services  to  serve  residents  of  the  
development  and  neighbouring  communities.  This  must  include  schools,  including  French  
Language  schools.  
• There  needs  to  be  better  integration  between  the  proposed  development  and  neighbouring  
communities.  There  cannot  be  discontinuity  between  existing  and  new  communities.  This  means  
making  sure  that  there  are  sufficient  and  proper  pedestrian  and  cycling  facilities  and  that  there  
are  connections  in  sensible  places  that  people  actually  and  currently  use.  
• There  should  be  proper  transitions  between  the  adjacent  low-­‐rise  community  and  the  denser  
neighbourhoods  proposed  on  Albert  St.  The  built  form  must  be  staged  in  such  a  way  to  provide  
appropriate  height  transition  from  lower  neighbourhoods  to  the  south.  Let’s  avoid  making  Albert  
St.  a  canyon.  
 
Biking  and  Walking,  Transit  and  Vehicle  access    
• The  site  should  also  improve  connections  to  the  Ottawa  River,  including  reducing  the  speed  of  
traffic  on  the  Sir  John  A  Macdonald  Parkway  and  providing  appropriate  crossings  for  pedestrians.  
• The  site  must  favour  pedestrians  and  cyclists  over  vehicular  traffic,  and  any  roads  through  it,  
including  Preston  and  Booth,  and  be  built  to  be  complete  streets.  It  should  be  easy  to  get  to,  and  
around  the  site  on  foot  or  bike.  Use  the  growing  pains  of  the  Lansdowne  Park  efforts  on  this  front  
to  avoid    similar  problems.  
• Traffic  plans  must  reflect  on  the  capacity  of  nearby  streets  and  sidewalks.  This  means  making  sure  
that  sidewalks  and  bike  lanes  on  nearby  streets  can  handle  the  demand  that  the  development  will  
attract.    
• We  are  concerned  about  traffic  flow  to  and  from  the  site,  as  well  as  the  impact  that  events  at  the  
site  will  have  on  street  parking  in  our  neighbourhood  (or  the  unsuccessful  search  for  it).    
• Interprovincial  rail  connection  is  essential  to  both  bids  transportation  plans,  but  is  an  unfunded  
element  of  two  city’s  long-­‐term  transportation  thoughts.  Given  that  it  is  needed  for  this  
development,  proponents  should  be  expected  to  cover  some  of  the  costs  associated  with  adding  
this  capacity.  
• The  arena  must  not  open  ahead  of  Phase  2  of  the  Confederation  line.  
 
Public  Institutions  and  Retail  Components  
• Both  bids  have  a  library  as  a  major  public  amenity,  though  it  is  far  from  certain  that  one  will  end  
up  there.  Should  a  library  not  be  built,  there  should  be  a  requirement  that  the  space  be  used  for  a  
similar  public  activity,  such  as  a  community  centre.  
• Retail  components  should  focus  on  what  residents  need.  That  must  include  a  grocery  store.  
• Consideration  should  be  given  for  preserving  or  restoring  the  heritage  of  the  site.  This  includes  the  
Aqueduct,  which  reflects  a  historic  form  of  construction  that  has  not  been  treated  kindly  by  
construction  on  Lebreton  Flats.  Restoring  it  to  his  historic  form  is  an  important  contribution  to  
remembering  the  history  of  the  area  and  city.  
 
Green  Infrastructure  and  Landscaping  

 No  expense  or  consideration  should  be  spared  on  making  sure  that  greenspace  is  built  to  thrive.  
Planning  for  green  infrastructure  needs  to  take  place  at  the  scoping  stage  of  the  project.  This  
means  making  sure  that  adequate  space  is  provided  below  and  above  ground  to  allow  trees  roots  
and  canopies  to  mature  and  sustain  tree  growth.  Silva  cells,  or  an  appropriate  equivalent,  should  
be  standard.  Underground  parking  and  utilities  must  be  deep  enough  to  accommodate  this.  
Healthy,  tall,  mature  trees  make  great  public  spaces.  
• Similarly,  consideration  should  be  given  to  how  landscaping  is  maintained  in  the  long  term.  Too  
often  gardens  and  planters  look  nice  in  the  first  year,  but  then  become  dead  shortly  thereafter.    
• Buildings  should  be  built  to  minimize  the  impact  on  migratory  birds.  
• Reducing  Noise  and  Light  Pollution  
• Light  pollution  from  the  site  should  be  minimized.  Illuminating  public  spaces  is  important,  but  
there’s  no  need  to  light  up  the  night  sky.  
• Consider  how  the  site  will  generate  noise,  orienting  public  realm  facilities  such  as  band  shells  and  
squares  in  such  a  way  that  sound  does  not  direct  towards  neighbouring  communities  when  
possible.    
 
Energy,  Water,  and  Environmental  Efficiencies  
• The  newly  constructed  facilities  should  use  technologies  that  strongly  reflect  current  
environmental  best  practices,  such  as  renewable  energy  sources,  grey  water  use  and  storm  water  
runoff  reduction,  garbage  recycling  and  composting,  and  night  time  lighting  reduction  in  
commercial  buildings.