Residents hear Lansdowne traffic plans

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EDDIE RWEMA, Ottawa This Week

Residents hear Lansdowne traffic plans. Several residents from the Glebe and Old Ottawa South gathered at the Glebe Community Centre on Dec. 1 to hear city's plans to monitor problems with traffic and parking prior to Lansdowne Park redevelopment planned to commence next year. Eddie Rwema

Glebe and Old Ottawa South residents fear the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park will create more traffic, noise and air pollution and substantial lose of residential parking spots during major events.

Their concerns were acknowledged by John Smit, a manager of development review for the city, who said the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park will generate additional traffic.

"Nobody is denying it whatsoever," Smit told those gathered at a public meeting about Lansdowne transportation monitoring held at the Glebe Community Centre on Dec .1.

The redevelopment will include retail stores, movie theatres and the renovation of Frank Clair Stadium, all of which are expected to increase the amount of traffic passing through the Glebe and Old Ottawa South.

"We recognize that there is going to be more traffic that is going to be happening in the area and we recognize there is going to be more demands with respect to parking in the residential streets," said Smit, adding the purpose of the meeting was to try to understand some of the key issues they should be considering in order to develop a comprehensive monitoring program.

Contract awarded for demolition of the south-side stands at Lansdowne

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City of Ottawa

The City of Ottawa has selected Delsan‐Aim Environmental Services Inc. for the mechanical demolition of the remaining south-side stands at Lansdowne Park. The work is scheduled to commence on November 7, 2011 and conclude by mid-January 2012. The contract award for approximately $550,000 is 63% less than the original estimate of $1.5 million.

"Lansdowne Park is an important City asset and it is time to move ahead with this part of its revitalization," said Mayor Jim Watson. "The fact we can do it at a significant cost saving is a real bonus for taxpayers."

The south-side stands are approaching the end of their service life and need to be removed to accommodate the stadium redevelopment. The vast majority of materials from this demolition will be re-used and with the selection of mechanical demolition no disruption to the use of the playing field is anticipated.

Council approved the demolition of the south-side stands in August of 2011. By bringing the south-side stands down at this time the City benefits from a savings of approximately four months in the revised project schedule. This also allows for an additional cost savings as most of the concrete work can take place before the winter months and therefore avoid winter construction cost. The demolition of the south-side stands will help achieve substantial completion of the stadium by December 2013.

No road closure and traffic detours will be required for the duration of the project. The demolition area will be fenced off and secured in order to accommodate planned activities on site, such as the Ottawa Farmers' Market.

For more information on construction activities at Lansdowne Park, visit ottawa.ca/newlansdowne.

Please send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

City Outlines Plan To Manage Contaminated Soil at Lansdowne

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CFRA, with files from Stephanie Kinsella

The City's plan to keep contaminated soil on site at Lansdowne Park has Glebe residents seeing red.

The contamination stems from former uses on the site, some dating back decades, and includes heating oil and dry cleaning chemicals.

The City plans to move much of that contaminated soil when the underground parking garage is built, and construct a 'berm,' or man-made hill, near the stadium.

City Environmental Remediation Manager Nancy Horton says taking the soil and creating a berm is something that has been done across the City, and the province, for years.

Residents lined up at a meeting in the Glebe to blast that approach, asking why the City doesn't simply remove the dirt from the park.

A consultant hired by the City says it would take 6,000 dump truck trips to remove all of the contaminated soil, and that would prove riskier than containing some of it on site.

The Ministry of Environment will decide if the plan meets all the necessary health and safety guidelines.

A Bus Pass With Every Condo at Lansdowne Proposed

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Josh Pringle, CFRA

Each residential unit at the redeveloped Lansdowne Park could come with a one year transit pass for OC Transpo.

The Transportation Demand Management Plan report by McCormick Rankin recommends the City require the developers to provide all purchasers of residential units with a transit pass to "create and establish a culture" of transit amongst the residents living at Lansdowne.

The report notes the City of Toronto recently introduced a policy requiring all new condo developments with more than 20 units to include a one year TTC Metropass with the purchase of each unit.

The Transportation Demand Management Plan outlines ideas to ensure the Lansdowne Park redevelopment achieves maximum benefits from a wider use of sustainable transportation modes, including public transportation and bicycling.

The City is also encouraged to set up enhanced bicycle parking facilities, create preferential parking for registered carpools and build showers and locker room facilities for employees at a redeveloped Lansdowne Park who bicycle to work.

Public Meeting for Lansdowne Soil

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Josh Pringle, CFRA

A meeting will be held at the end of this month to discuss the environmental issues surrounding the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park.

Friends of Lansdowne says the lot contains large amounts of contaminated soil that will be dug up during the construction on a redeveloped Lansdowne.

The Ministry of Environment, the City and an independent environmental expert will make presentations on the cost and care required for the clean-up.

The meeting will be held October 27th at the Glebe Community Centre.

City's Lansdowne consulting firm earned $2.8M on sole-sourced contract

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By David Reevely, Ottawa Citizen

Only one firm could help the city government navigate its deal with private developers to renovate Lansdowne Park, according to the top city manager, and it doesn't come cheap.

The company: Graham Bird & Associates. The price tag: $2.8 million (and maybe more). Competition for the work: None.

Documents obtained for the Citizen by access-to-information specialist Ken Rubin say Bird's firm is to be paid $1.776 million for its work on the Lansdowne redevelopment plan between July 2010 and the end of December 2013, broken into chunks that match the project's stages. With sales tax of $230,879.99, the bill for the 3½ years of work is $2,006,879,99.

Bird and his team worked on the file before that, though, and e-mails between city purchasing officials trying to decide how to bill for and record the work indicate that there's an "invoice history" up to June 2010 of $792,341, suggesting a grand total of about $2.8 million.

The documents predate the project's conclusion date slipping by two years, but in a written statement city spokesman Michael FitzPatrick said the longer timeline shouldn't mean the city pays more money: "The overall cost of the contract will not increase regardless of the schedule delay," he wrote.

Bird wouldn't speak to the Citizen to discuss just what the city gets for the money, but of course it doesn't just buy the services of Graham Bird himself: he's the head of a consulting firm with seven staff listed on its website, and they all need to be paid.

Lansdowne plans move forward

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City committee approves new finances, timeline

YourOttawaRegion.com

GLEBE - Glebe merchants are threatening to launch an appeal and another man has filed a second court challenge against the Lansdowne redevelopment plan, but that didn't stop city councillors from endorsing a new financial plan and timeline for the project.

The city's finance and economic development committee gave the thumb's up to the updated plan on Aug. 18, after city manager Kent Kirkpatrick said the project is "stronger now than it was" in June of 2010, when city council first approved the redevelopment plan, which is a partnership with the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG).

But that came after a few barbs leveled at councillors by Paul Webber, a lawyer representing the Glebe Business Improvement Area (BIA).

The city broke its promise to block fashion retail stores from moving into Lansdowne, Webber charged, and Glebe businesses will fight the city if it tries to allow those types of stores on the site.

City of Ottawa's Lansdowne legal tab to swell by another $200,000

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By David Reevely, The Ottawa Citizen

OTTAWA — The city expects to spend as much as another $200,000 fighting in court to defend its plans for Lansdowne Park — and perhaps more, as new legal threats land at City Hall.

That could take the total tab past $1.7 million.

City council voted Thursday to continue with its Lansdowne plans, accepting a longer timeline for the project that will see work finished in 2015, two years later than it was all supposed to have been done. Councillors also agreed to revised financial projections that strengthen the city's financial position somewhat, but also to spend more money sooner on the project's design work and on preparing to move the historic Horticulture Building elsewhere on the Glebe site to make way for a parking garage and commercial space. The vote was 21-2, with downtown councillors David Chernushenko and Diane Holmes dissenting.

Part of the delay is caused by a court case brought by a community group called the Friends of Lansdowne Park. According to a report to councillors, the litigation occupied a great deal of staff time before Superior Court Justice Charles Hackland in July rejected the Friends' allegations that the city's deal with the private Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (to renovate Frank Clair Stadium and construct retail and commercial space along the northern and western edges of the site) amounts to an illegal subsidy, violated the city's procurement bylaw and was negotiated in bad faith.

The Friends have filed formal notice of their intention to appeal, and city solicitor Rick O'Connor told councillors that he expects the next stage of the case to cost between $100,000 and $200,000 in fees for the private lawyers hired to represent the city. There's room allowed for it in the revised timeline for the project.

Lansdowne delays could impact FIFA bid

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Laura Mueller / OTTAWA THIS WEEK

GLEBE - The community is still trying to absorb the impact of an almost-yearlong delay in the Lansdowne redevelopment project.

Perhaps the most significant fallout could be the effect on the city's bid to host two FIFA women's world-cup soccer games in 2015. Ottawa is one of seven cities in the running to host two women's world cup soccer tournaments in July of 2014 and June of 2015.

Under the revised timelines released in a city report on Aug. 12, the stadium wouldn't be ready to use until early 2014.

A representative from the Canadian Soccer Association did not respond to requests to comment on the potential impact of the delay on its FIFA (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) bid, but Coun. Steve Desroches said FIFA could "find some comfort" in city council's desire to move forward on the project.

"I think it's critical that we keep to the timelines so that we can provide those assurances to FIFA," Desroches said.

He added that he isn't aware of any concerns that have been expressed by the organizers of the U-20 Women's World Cup (2014) and FIFA Women's World Cup (2015).

Capital Ward Coun. David Chernushenko refrained from saying "I told you so," but as the lone dissenter on the motion to seek the FIFA tournaments, he said he wouldn't be surprised if the revised timelines had some impact on the stadium's readiness to host the events.

But he added that as a soccer fan, he hopes FIFA would look at other, perhaps more important, factors that go into hosting a successful sporting event, such as the atmosphere of the capital, associated entertainment events and transportation options.

"(Ottawa) would appeal because it's the capital," Chernushenko said. "You can host an event in an unfinished stadium."

Temporary stands could be installed in the interim if the stadium is not fully completed, Chernushenko said.

Chernushenko was also quick to dismiss claims that the Friends of Lansdowne legal challenge was the main or only reason for the delay.

"I continue to resent that implication," he said, adding that there have been many delays on OSEG and the designers' side as well.

As for whether the reconstruction of Bank Street in the Glebe could have waited until next year, Chenushenko said he would have approached the issue differently if he had known Lansdowne would be delayed.

"In life, you have to make decisions based on the information you have at the time," he said, noting that waiting until 2012 to reconstruct the street still would not have allowed the city to find funds to bury the hydro wires.

If you don’t find the information you need on these pages, please visit ottawa.ca/newlansdowne, or to contact the City directly by email at newlansdowne@ottawa.caor by calling 3-1-1 (press 1 for English, then 5 for the Lansdowne line). If necessary, you may also contact the project manager, Marco Manconi, at 613-580-2424 ext. 43229, or by email.