By Councillor Scott Moffatt, Ward 21
Construction season is in full swing. Residents along Mansfield Road have been experiencing the renewal of their road over the last couple of weeks and residents of Purdy Road before that. Next up is Malakoff Road, south of Cowell Road. Also coming up over the next few weeks are the renewal of McCordick Road, between Century and Brophy, as well as Fallowfield Road, between Moodie Drive and Old Richmond Road. Additionally, Second Line Road, between Roger Stevens and Century Road, will see an upgrade from gravel to a hard surface. Expect to see plenty of culvert replacements throughout the ward over the summer as well. These often create minor traffic impacts.
At the intersection of Century Road and McCordick Road, we will also see construction this summer in the form of an intersection improvement to address challenges with the skewed design that has historically existed here. Proposed work includes making the McCordick Road stop signs and approached more apparent to drivers, removing the small connection at the north side of the intersection between McCordick and Century, toward Malakoff, and the addition of an overhead flashing beacon.
In the fall of this year, we expect construction to begin on Phase 2 of the Richmond Forcemain Twinning project. This will involve significant work along Eagleson Road from the lagoon site to Fallowfield Road. This is a project funded by new growth in the village to accommodate the additional units on the sanitary sewer system. There will be traffic impacts when this project begins, and I will provide more information when we get closer to that time.
Finally, the parking lot at the Kars Recreation Centre will finally be resurfaced. We expect this work to be completed this month in advance of the July 16th celebrations of Kars’ bicentennial.
A bit of a déjà vu moment last week with the Lansdowne debate at Council. It was June 2010 where Council spent five days and over 50 hours debating the Lansdowne that we see today. As a candidate in the 2010 election, I remember that debate well and it formed much of the discussion city-wide during that election. While it passed with a 15-9 vote, the final decision rested with the Council that was to follow. Back then, a motion was put forward to defer any decision on Lansdowne to that next term, but that deferral failed. A similar motion last week requested that we defer this new Lansdowne plan to the next term, but it also failed. Interestingly, the 2010 election yielded a Council even more in support of Lansdowne and the project ultimately proceeded after a 21-3 vote in favour. Foreshadowing the 2022 election? I guess we will see.
To provide more details on was City Council voted on, we approved in principle a business plan and funding strategy to redevelop Lansdowne with a new event centre, north side stands, retail spaces and residential units, which will include affordable housing.
The Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG) has proposed a plan for a state-of-the-art, 5,500-seat event centre east of the football field, to help bring more concerts and cultural events to Ottawa. OSEG also aims to remove the aging north side stands, replacing them with facilities that would be fully compliant with current accessibility standards. The Civic Centre arena and existing retail space would be replaced with a two-storey retail building that could eventually be expanded with up to 1,200 new residential units, including 120 affordable ones, directly above it.
The total capital cost for the project, estimated at $332.6 million, will be funded through the sale of air rights and debt funding, along with some City capital budget funding for internal costs. The new funding model simplifies an existing arrangement and improves the City’s financial position. Staff will return with a follow-up report detailing costs, legal amendments, and public consultation feedback for consideration in the next Term of Council.
This decision will rest with the next term. If changes are desired to any part of the plan, it will be within the rights and abilities of that term to make those changes. This could include more affordable housing or an awning over the north side stands. The plan in front of Council last week was one that did not require taxpayers’ dollars to fund the plan. Any additional improvements will require some financial considerations. I was happy to support this plan just as I was happy to support the Lansdowne Partnership Plan in 2012. It is an important City asset, and it is equally important that we continue to improve the asset to the benefit of the entire City.
If you have any comments, questions, or concerns, please email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491. For information on Ward 21 issues, please visit TeamTwentyOne.ca.