Northbound traffic to be detoured during two-year reconstruction project
Laura Mueller, Ottawa Community News
Motorists can expect significant traffic impacts when Main Street is reconstructed over the next two years to replace century-old water and sewer infrastructure.
Plans revealed at an open house on Nov. 20 show the main artery in Old Ottawa East will be closed to northbound traffic between Greenfield and Riverdale avenues in the first phase of construction starting next spring. There will be one northbound lane available for local traffic only from Riverdale to Clegg Street.
In the second construction phase, no northbound traffic at all will be allowed on Main between Greenfield and Riverdale.
The open house on Nov. 20 was well-attended and people had a lot of questions, said John Dance, president of the Old Ottawa East Community Association.
“The construction will be very disruptive but it's the price we have to pay to have modern water and sewer lines and a safe, friendly street,” Dance said.
The construction will lead to a host of important and long-awaited improvements for the neighbourhood, Dance said. Main Street itself will get the addition of bicycle lanes in the form of raised cycle tracks – a useful addition as the community just outside the downtown swells with the development of 10 hectares of institutional land formerly occupied by the Oblate fathers, Dance said.
Opening of Whole Foods Market, Sporting Life this week begins battle for customers
|Sporting Life, left, and Whole Foods open on the same week, creating immediate competition for smaller businesses along Bank Street. (Julie Ireton/CBC)|
At times tense and heated, the relationship between small businesses in the Glebe neighbourhood and those settling in at Lansdowne Park will be one of reciprocity, according to retail experts and local businesses.
"All families fight," said Gilbert Russell, vice-chairman of the Glebe Business Improvement Area, "Both parties have realized that we are going to be better if we work together."
Some businesses have already opened at the rebuilt Lansdowne Park.
But this week is important as key entities Whole Foods Market and Sporting Life open for the public this week — Wednesday and Thursday respectively — leading to major competition for smaller Glebe operations like McKeen’s Metro, Kunstadt Sports and others.
Retail expert Darren Fleming believes the businesses will rely on each other to bring shoppers to the area. The smaller Glebe stores have the history and the clientele, while the larger stores have the uniqueness and newness.
Also, Lansdowne is not your typical retail site, said Fleming, a managing principal at Cresa Ottawa.
"There aren’t acres and acres of parking that people can pull up to in front of the store," he said. "Whole Foods has a lot of experience in these types of developments."
'The parking at that site is tricky and it's not easy,' says commercial tenant representative
The commercial office space available at Lansdowne Park hasn't attracted much interest so far, a broker says. (Julie Ireton/CBC)
Commercial office space being built at the new Lansdowne Park isn't attracting much interest so far due to site challenges including parking, says a commercial tenant representative.
Construction work continues at Lansdowne on condominiums, restaurants and offices and two major retailers are opening this week: Whole Foods Market and Sporting Life.
But so far, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority, or CIRA, has been the only organization to announce it will be relocating to Lansdowne.
CIRA's corporate headquarters are expected to move in during spring 2015.
Several floors of commercial office space at Lansdowne remain without a tenant.
'It's really challenging,' broker says
The lack of interest mainly comes down to parking, said the man who helped broker the CIRA deal.
"From the office market, it's really challenging. The parking at that site is tricky and it's not easy," said Darren Fleming, a managing principal at Cresa Ottawa, which represents commercial tenants.
"There's probably going to be 10 to 20 days a year where parking is going to be really challenged because people are coming for a game or a concert, and that just doesn't work for a lot of organizations."
Fleming said CIRA chose Lansdowne to "make a statement."
"It's a very visible site, there's a lot of attention and activity around it, so they're choosing to be there in spite of some of the challenges because of where and what it is," Fleming said.
'People want to be in this area,' BIA chair argues
Greg Best — chair of the Glebe Business Improvement Area, which includes Lansdowne — agrees parking is a major issue. But he thinks the new park will still attract commercial tenants to the office tower.
"People want to be in this area," Best said.
"You're close to the canal, everything's within walking distance, you're two minutes to the Queensway... It's a heavily treed area, there's a lot of parks, a lot of bikeways. So you don't get that in downtown Ottawa."
Bernie Ashe, the CEO of the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group, said there are no new announcements about office tenants.
Leasing activity is underway and progress is being made, Ashe said.
La Ville d’Ottawa invite les résidents à donner leur avis au sujet de l’œuvre d’art public qu’elle commandera pour le nouveau garage du Glebe. Faites part de vos commentaires en ligne et en personne!
Le public pourra rencontrer les cinq artistes présélectionnés et examiner leurs propositions :
Le lundi 24 novembre, de 16 h à 19 h
Église presbytérienne St. Giles
174, ave First (prière d’utiliser la porte de l’ave First)
Ou donnez votre opinion en ligne! Cliquez ici http://fluidsurveys.com/s/glebeparkinggarage/langfr-ca/ en tout temps pour voir les propositions et remplir notre sondage en ligne avant le 25 novembre à minuit.
Les commentaires du public aideront le Comité de sélection des œuvres d’art à choisir la proposition gagnante.
Les cinq artistes présélectionnés sont :
- Karl Ciesluk
- Christopher Griffin
- Michael Kinghorn
- Erin Robertson et Anna Williams
- Amy Thompson
Garage du Glebe
Ce garage public de quatre étages sera situé au 170, avenue Second, et sera accessible par l’avenue Second et l’avenue Third. En plus de l’aménagement du paysage de rue, le rez-de-chaussée sera aménagé selon un concept ouvert avec stationnement polyvalent. Les travaux devraient commencer à l’hiver 2015 et se terminer vers la fin d’octobre 2015.