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Concierge Plan Jeopardizes Lobbyist Registry




“In my six months here, I haven’t noticed that the larger developers are having any problem navigating city hall.”

Rideau-Rockcliffe Councillor Tobi Nussbaum

Nussbaum was speaking to planning committee this week addressing the controversial concierge proposal that would see planning department employees assigned to individual developers to guide their projects through the city bureaucracy.

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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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City Hiring Concierges: Top 10 List




The City of Ottawa is considering appointing staff members to be point men (or women) for the municipality’s developers.

Dubbed the concierge program (though some are calling it the ambassadors program), it gives already powerful developers even more influence at Ottawa City Hall.

The Bulldog this weekend was leaked secret documents showing exactly what characteristics senior management is seeking in hiring its new concierges. Strangely it came out as 10 points.

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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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City, Developers Finally Get A Room

ottawa city hall - heritage

City hall is developing a concierge system for developers.

For years, wags around city hall have been saying that if the city got any closer to developers, they’d have to get a room.

Well guess what? They just got a room.

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“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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Gentrification: The Urban G-Spot

Where is one of the most sensitive spots in a city?

Why gentrification of course:

Ask city-dwellers to describe what, precisely, gentrification is you’ll get an array of answers. The term is a murky one, used to describe the many different ways through which money and development enter poorer or less developed neighborhoods, changing them both economically and demographically.

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Three Great Planning Strikes

cityhallsmallWhat neighbourhoods have been under the scrutiny of Ottawa’s planning department most.

This is no scientific tally but your agent would say probably Lansdowne (and the Glebe around it), Little Italy and the old west end.

Which areas are experiencing traffic problems recently?

Why Lansdowne, Little Italy and the old west end.

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Ottawa Keeps Making Huge Planning Mistakes

Little ItalyA businessman is travelling to Little Italy hoping to get a new client to buy his products.

Parking availability is horrible in Little Italy (by the city’s own admission in a recent report) and so the businessman decides to take the advice of the municipality and use the new bike racks to park his two-wheeler. He leaves the four-wheeler at home.

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Taylor’s Low Light-Rail Expectations

WHOPPERWATCHHere comes the western light-rail spin, this time from Bay Councillor Mark Taylor:

“Through this process we have found a better option than any of us would have hoped for.”

Taylor’s standards are amazingly low.

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Harder Praises Local Planning Control

This is a release from planning committee chairwoman Jan Harder:

Statement from Councillor Jan Harder, Chair of Planning Committee.

The City welcomes the Smart Growth initiatives announced by the Ontario Government today. Streamlining the development-approval process, reducing the number of Ontario Municipal Board cases, strengthening local control over the Official Plan process and allowing cities greater flexibility to use development charges for waste diversion projects will all be very helpful to Ottawa.

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Harder On LeBreton: Top 10 List



Ahh, planning committee chairwoman Jan Harder. Yes, Jan Harder.

Glebe residents weep when they hear that name.

For Harder has that suburban ethos. Build big things all over the place as long as everyone has a driveway, a garage, four lanes of open road and a backyard.

Doesn’t matter how it looks or how it affects neighbourhoods outside her beloved mecca of autos, Barrhaven. Global warming? Piffle.

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Commercial Plan Badly Flawed: Activist

This is a comment from Hintonburg community activist Jay Baltz on the place to rezone parts of residential area to commercial:

The original goal of this study, which was to add zoning permission at specific properties to allow existing corner stores and small food outlets in residential communities to easily continue existing, was a good idea.

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