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Developers Change Their Winning Game

construction

Has the development industry over-played its hand in Ottawa?


The development industry and its friends on Ottawa City Council must not have played much tennis.

Had they, they would know the old tennis adage: Never change a winning game.

What do you want to do when you play tennis? Win (or if you are not competitive, at least get some exercise).

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City Fails Its Transportation Mandate

Watson

Watson

Here’s a strategic mistake by the City of Ottawa … one that residents will suffer from for decades.

Intensification is a great idea for all the reasons that have discussed on this website for years. But intensification without a proper mass-transit system in place is a disaster.

We’re seeing this problem in areas where intensification is out of control. Because huge condos (or collections of condos) are being built but without a real mass transit system, traffic arteries are snarled. Traffic studies done for these projects are a joke. Has anyone heard of a condo project rejected because it will contribute to already bad traffic congestion? Your agent hasn’t.

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Please Sir, I Want A Concierge, Too

ottawa logoLook … your agent needs a concierge.

Why I’m redeveloping my lot which is zoned for three storeys but I want 55 storeys. Surely we can work something out.

You know, we need intensification so I frankly don’t see the problem with putting a 55-storey tower in a residential area. And you don’t need visitor parking anymore so that’s a slam dunk. Why the city was ready to allow two towers at 335 Roosevelt in Westboro so what’s wrong with just one tower on my street. Like what is my street … chopped liver?

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Concierge Plan Is An Affront To Democracy

Putin

Putin

The city is planning to appoint 20 “ambassadors” in the planning department to represent the needs of the city’s top developers.

Your agent wonders what happens to the 21st developer.

Popularly known as the concierge program, it makes a mockery of democracy. Ottawa appears democratic once every four years. The rest of the time the public is patronized by politicians, developers and public servants.

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Jack Stirling Starts New Career

Former Minto vice-president Jack Stirling has formed his own firm.

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Concierge Plan: What’s Up On That?

Hmmm. Wonder if the concierge plan will be raised?

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

The City’s Planning Committee will be meeting with the Planning and Growth Management team to review the department’s 2015-2018 work plan.

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FCA Opposes Concierge Plan

The Federation of Citizens’ Associations of Ottawa-Carleton has come out strongly against the new “ambassadors” to developers or concierge program.

Does anyone like this plan except city planners, developers and some councillors? What was the crying need from the public to provide concierges for individual developers to get through the system? Was the public informed of this plan during the election campaign?

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Does The City Have Too Many Planners?

cityhallsmallThe city said surface light rail on the Macdonald Parkway would cost $980 million.

Then when the National Capital Commission won the Texas Cage Death Match (only one bureaucracy leaves the cage alive) 100-day negotiations with the City of Ottawa (in which the city declared a victory of compromise) by getting its demand for a Macdonald Parkway tunnel, the Watson administration said the same light-rail line with a tunnel would cost $980 million …. again.

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Concierge Planning Offers Nothing To Taxpayers

ottawa logoThis is a comment from long-time Bulldog contributor Ron Benn concerning the new concierge system that will assign city staffers to developers to speed their applications through the civic bureaucracy:

The city planning department speaks its own language, to the point where outsiders cannot hold a meaningful conversation with them, as the terminology used by planners is unknown to the great unwashed.

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WHOPPERWATCH

“The communities have ambassadors and they’re called councillors.”


 

– Planning committee chairwoman Jan Harder on the new concierges who will serve developers and speed their applications through Ottawa City Hall.

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Dump The Tall Buildings

leafslogoOttawa doesn’t need 55-storey towers.

It’s turning us into little Toronto.

Which is built like Everywhere North America. Throw Dallas and Toronto on a table and you can’t tell the difference.

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Windmill Plans Last Chaudiere Meeting

This is a release from Windmill Development Group which is planning a huge project on the Chaudiere and Albert Islands and on the Gatineau shoreline:

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Development Charges In Detail

Here are the details behind the new development charges at the City of Ottawa. The charts are from the municipality:

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Building Increases In 2013

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

Ottawa’s new housing and construction project activity rose higher in 2013, according to the City of Ottawa Building Code Services report.

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Parliament Hill Faces Intensification

winterlude parliament

In the future, Parliament Hill will figure in the city’s intensification plans.

Feb. 18, 2017: News Flash: Prime Minister Ben Mulroney, in a surprise move, asks the City of Ottawa planning department to evaluate Parliament Hill and its buildings for renovation and intensification.

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Right On, Diane Holmes

Holmes

Holmes

It takes a brave councillor to stand up to city staff. That’s because city staff can make a councillor’s life miserable.

Need a road plowed, councillor? Yeah, we’ll get to it … someday. Grass needs to be cut on an empty lot … sure, it’s 148th in line.

But Somerset Councillor Diane Holmes doesn’t put up with a lot of guff. And she has called down the Planning and Growth Management Department in the way it deserves. Holmes is right … it no longer serves the citizens of Ottawa.

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It’s Not All About You, Jim

Watson

Watson

Sometimes one has to wonder what runs through Mayor Jim Watson’s mind. Too often it’s not about what’s good for Ottawa, but what’s good for Jim.

Toronto has banned corporate and union donations to municipal political candidates, but our mayor in Ottawa thinks they’re a good idea.

At a gathering at Carleton University this week, Watson said he if couldn’t garner his $600,000 to finance his mayoral campaign, he couldn’t run.

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Hobbs Post Generates Fierce Debate

Hobbs

Hobbs

This week Bulldog Ottawa readers had a blast debating whether residents should boycott development public meetings.

Your agent says they are just dog-and-pony shows where people go through the motions of listening to resident and then do what they please. While most Bulldoggians don’t disagree with that premise, some feel people should go to meetings to pressure the city and developers.

In case you missed it, the comments below are from the post A Hobbs’ Dog-And-Pony Show.

And that’s where the debate begins:

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A Hobbs Dog-And-Pony Show

For those of you who think these dog-and-pony shows mean anything (Bulldog Ottawa is boycotting them until the municipal election after the abysmal performance of city hall on the Scott Street detour), you should go.

Needless to say, people don’t put up millions of dollars to build something without already having their legislative ducks in order. These meetings are to make you feel good. They are very unlikely to have much effect on the final outcome of the process.

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Hobbs Has Westboro Rising

Hobbs

Hobbs

Avid Bulldog reader Randy Gordon looks at the current state of development in the old west end:

Ho Ho Ho – Need More Dough

I think I have now discovered how the City is trying to recoup its loses from the recent financial disasters of the Airport Parkway Bridge, the Armstrong Bridge, Presto Card, LRT. You know what I mean.

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Intensify Intelligently And Gradually

highrises

Impersonal Beijing. Do we want our downtown residential areas to be just forests of highrises with all the social costs that come with them?

In Ottawa, you’re very hard-pressed to find people against intensification … even in the core.

However what residents are complaining about is intensification in areas that are already highly developed and can’t take much more traffic in a city that has been slow to adopt mass transit surrounding light rail. Or placing highrises in neighbourhoods where they are completely out of place.

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Input Wanted On Infill Development

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

Public input is being sought for a study of infill residential development in the mature neighbourhoods of Ottawa.

Two public information sessions are being held as part of the Low-Rise Infill Housing Study, Stage II. One session will be held Monday at the Nepean Sportsplex and another will be held Wednesday at the Carleton Heights Community Centre.

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Bulldog Ottawa Is Pro-Development

construction

Bulldog Ottawa is pro-development. Really good appropriate development.

Bulldog Ottawa is pro-development.

That sound you hear now is a number of builders in town choking on their coffee.

The impression in the development industry is that Bulldog Ottawa is against development. Not true. We’re against bad development.

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Domtar Land Sale A Heritage Gamble

The potential purchase of the Domtar lands by Windmill Developments below the Chaudière Falls might turn out to be a great outcome.

But that will only be the case if the developer shows respect for the history and cultural tradition, especially First Peoples, that resides at the site. And there must be much public land to bring visitors to see the majestic falls that have been Ottawa’s best-kept secret for so many years.

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KINGDICK Fails To Understand Ottawa

westboro convent

This would be Bulldog Ottawa commenter KINGDICK’s concept of progress: the 19th-century garden at Les Soeurs de la Visitation convent being built upon.

Former prominent local politician KINGDICK doesn’t really understand the concept of progress.

But before I respond to what he has to say, let’s give KINGDICK his place in the sun. This is a comment he made on Bulldog Ottawa:

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