The Rockcliffe Park Residents Association have organized a “friendly debate “ on “The Environment and Its Challenges” between Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party of Canada, and Thomas D’Aquino. President and CEO, Canadian Council of Chief Executives.
This takes place on Wednesday, February 28 at 8.00 P M at the Rockcliffe Park Community Hall at 380 Springfield Rd.
The event is of course free and followed by coffee and cookies. All welcome. Our hall can hold about 100 people.
A talented group of nine young Ottawa musicians between the ages of 11 and 19 are staging a benefit concert to aid Cambodian orphans. The concert will take place at 4:00 PM on Sunday, November 4, 2007 at MacKay United Church, 39 Dufferin Road, Ottawa (New Edinburgh). This classical music fundraiser is being organized entirely by the young musicians and their friends. The renowned, Canadian-born international concert pianist, Janina Fialkowska is the Honorary Patron for the concert. Tickets are $15 for adults and $5 for youths and available from their website (www.khk-es.ca) and “A Better Frame of Mind” (417 MacKay St) and at the door.
EXCELLENT NEWS - The City has notified NECA today that Larco Homes is NOT going to appeal the decisions of the Committee of Adjustment regarding the redevelopment of 132 Stanley Avenue. The developer is NOT proceeding with the townhouse project andhas asked to withdraw its application for Site Plan Control.
The views of neighbours and the broader New Edinburgh community have been heard. What becomes of this property remains to be seen, but the current project is finished. A great deal of time, effort, and money has been invested in defence of the New Edinburgh Heritage Conservation District, but happily it was not in vain. This is a remarkable achievement that defies the odds and benefits the whole community
Time Wieclawski's Article from the March 26, 2008 edition of Metro Ottawa:
Over the advice of their conservation advisors, councillors on a city committee yesterday endorsed plans for two developments.
First, the committee approved plans to demolish a 41- year-old New Edinburgh house to make way for threestorey rowhouse units. Then it approved a nine-storey apartment building at Bank and Gladstone streets.
The Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee (LACAC) rejected the infill projects because the proposed buildings were much bigger than those in the rest of the neighborhood — concerns shared by neighbours of the New Edinburgh proposal who feel they could affect sightlines, increase traffic and shadow surrounding homes.
“The massing is out of scale with the district in particular with the nearby properties,” said LACAC chair Jay Baltz.
For the apartment building, LACAC found it out of character with nearby buildings and contrary to height guidelines for core streets.
But a city staff report cited several examples of similarsized buildings in New Edinburgh, in particular, and the committee approved the plan.
The New Edinburgh Community Alliance had collected nearly 200 signatures on a petition opposing the rowhouse development. Inge Van der Horst of NECA called the decision “very disappointing.” “We’re not going to just accept it now,” she said.
Desmond Devoy's Article from the March 6, 2008 edition of the The Now-EMC Ottawa East:
The City of Ottawa’s Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee (LACAC), has voted against the application to demolish and redevelop 132 Stanley Avenue in New Edinburgh.
With eight votes in favour, LACAC members voted in favour of a motion that stated that “the mass and density and lack of green space of the proposed development are not appropriate…and do not fit the streetscape.” The vote was taken in the Champlain Room of Ottawa City Hall on the evening of Thursday, February 28th, and essentially recommends that City Council not approve the application. However, LACAC is only an advisory body and council can do with the recommendation as it sees fit.
City staff had recommended the demolition of the current residence at 132 Stanley, which was built in 1967, stating that it was considered a category four structure, meaning it was a building “of little or no heritage value...located within the boundaries of an existing or proposed heritage conservation district,” said Heritage Planner Sally Coutts during her presentation to the committee. She recommended approval because the latest updated design of the proposal complies with the height bylaws for the area, is consistent with other terrace-type housing in the area, like Lansdowne Terrace, and “stylistically refl ects the eclectic nature of the community.”
“We strongly believe that this is appropriate infi ll…it’s environmentally responsible as it uses less land,” said Debbie Belfie, the architect of the proposed new development, leading towards what she felt would be a “safer, more complete community.” She added that her proposal not only met the city’s intensifi cation ideals but met its heritage aspects as well.
“From the outset, we met with the city planners and met with the community,” Belfie told the committee. “We told them that we would take their comments…and we would go back to the drawing board.”
The latest change to the plans since they were fi rst presented was for the proposed development to no longer be a single unit but “we’ve created two smaller buildings,” with a separation of eight feet, and “we brought the height down.”
She reiterated that three trees would be planted along River Lane and seven trees would be planted along Queen Victoria Street.
“In my view, the staff recommendation is very sound,” said urban designer Barry Padolsky, who has been a heritage advocate since 1972. “This is very appropriate infi ll in the New Edinburgh area.”
Padolksy was quick to add that “I’m not here as an apologist for the developer. I’m doing this pro bono,” and acknowledged that “it’s not easy to introduce change.”
The majority of New Edinburgh residents who made delegations to the committee however, were not swayed by the developer’s words.
“Those who advocated in favour of it [the proposed development,] up here tonight, don’t live here and the 200 [who signed a petition against it] are,” said area resident Peter Boehm, who feared that such developments might lead to a kind of “urban slum.”
“We will experience the negative impact if this goes forward,” Boehm said.
Many of the area residents were asked by the board what alternatives they would recommend to replace the proposed development. The consensus amongst many of the delegations was that two double homes or three single homes on the property would be an acceptable compromise, meeting the densifi cation requirements while keeping the character of the area intact.
“Smaller would have been better and may have received community support,” said Boehm, who also called the plan “short sighted,” and “disrespectful.”
Resident David Fleming also voiced his approval for the two to three detached unit idea, saying that “that is three times the units that are there now.” Fleming also expressed his concern that the current proposal, if approved, could set a dangerous precedent in New Edinburgh.
Other residents brought up new concerns about the proposed development.
“Will our 19th century foundation withstand the blasting? I don’t know,” admitted resident Tony Roth during his delegation. He also added that “the sun and moon and stars will be blotted out, making it very dark indeed,” because of the height.
Because of the recent heavy snows, Roth also drew the committee’s attention to the fact that nearby River Lane is quite narrow at the best of times and is even more narrow because of the snow in winter. Because of the car lane proposed for the back of the new 132 Stanley development, “it is important to imagine all of those cars making the turn onto River Lane in the winter time,” at the new intersection. He also felt that the new residents would be losing out on the full New Edinburgh experience because “they will not share the commonality of looking after older homes.”
Richard Levitan, President of LARCO Homes, took exception during the public delegation session to the notion that the new development would bring signifi - cantly more traffic into the area.
He stated that “there are two cars there already [at 132 Stanley Avenue] so, mathematics tells me that it would be an additional 10 cars,” in the new development.
“It’s not an additional 12 cars,” he stated. “We don’t know if those people will have two cars each [in each unit.]…It might not be preposterous to presume that people might have one or no cars because it is a downtown neighbourhood.”
Ward 12 (Rideau-Vanier) City Councillor Georges Bedard made note – and light – of the two car garage aspect of the plan.
“I live in Sandy Hill and I don’t know anybody who has a two car garage,” Coun. Bedard said. “What about New Edinburgh? Maybe the Governor General’s [house]!”
January 9, 2008 - NECA is hosting a community meeting on this proposal. Meeting will be held from 7 - 9 pm at MacKay United Church. The developer and his team will present their plans and neighbours are encouraged to ask questions and share their comments and concerns. Here is a list of contacts to whom interested neighbours may wish to submit their comments and/or concerns in writing.
December 2007 - Plans are underway to demolish the existing bungalow and build six townhouses stretching from Stanley Avenue to River Lane, with one fronting on Stanley and the remainder on Queen Victoria. Heritage & Development Committee is recommending to NECA that a public meeting be convened where the builder and architect can present their plans to the community and field questions. Date and location to be confirmed.
N.E.C.A. NEW EDINBURGH COMMUNITY ALLIANCE . ALLIANCE COMMUNAUTAIRE NEW EDINBURGH www.newedinburgh.ca MINUTES: BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING Monday, November 20, 2006 at the Field House, 193 Stanley Avenue
Present: Gemma Kerr (pres.), John Jarecsni (treas.), Barbara Benoit (sec.), Andrew Kerr (website), Gail McEachern (Development), Dilshad Macklem, David Sacks
Absent: Pauline Bogue, Catherine Mirsky, Carrolyn Johnson
Ex officio: Joseph Cull (Development Committee), Alexandra Reid (Development Committee), Paul McConnell (Development Committee), Guy Legault (Development Committee), Cindy Parkanyi (New Edinburgh News), Penney Place (CCC)
Guest: Miriam MacNeil (Fo-Tenn)
The agenda was adopted, with the Development Committee presentation moved forward.
The minutes were deferred until January.
Jacques Legendre was unable to attend.
Development, Heritage and Intensification Committee
Report Miriam MacNeil tabled Fo-Tenn’s report on zoning issues and drew particular attention to the need for clarification of the changes in floodplain provisions and building heights (where they are measured from). She recommended that NECA make a formal request to the City for a community design plan. John Jarecsni agreed to draft a letter in consultation with Gail McEachern, and to circulate the draft within a few days to all NECA and Development Committee members.
Gail McEacern distributed copies of a new letter from NECA to the OMB rescinding its earlier support for the Ivy Crescent development proposal.
Barbara Benoit moved that NECA accept this draft as the expression of its position on the matter.
David Sachs seconded the motion.
The motion was unanimously carried.
I. CCC: Penney Place reported that there would be no special Christmas event. The skating party will be held on January 27th. The City has no funds available for the park, and the CCC will pursue other sources for upgrading the playground equipment.
II. 4Cs: Johan was not present. Joseph Cull reported that the auction raised over $13,000. There will be more information in the December New Edinburgh News.
III. Park: There were no reports on the park.
IV. Sculpture Trail: John Jarecsni reported that he had heard from Colin Goodfellow that, to pay the sculpture pad’s actual cost of $6,500 he had used the $4,200 from the Park Trust and $2,500 from NECA. He proposed to put an additional $2,500 from NECA towards the Art Bank costs. John noted that NECA had agreed in October to pay for the pad, but not the Art Bank costs. In the meantime, the sculpture has been destroyed by vandalism. The police are looking into the case.
Barbara Benoit moved that NECA advance the full sum of up to $5000 as a final contribution to the Sculpture Trail, to be applied to any costs related to installation of the sculpture in Stanley Park, with the provision that NECA receive a full accounting of how the sum was spent.
Gail McEachern seconded the motion.
The motion was carried, with John Jarecsni abstaining.
Gemma agreed to write a letter to Colin Goodfellow presenting NECA’s offer.
V. Urban Rideau Conservationists: John Jarecsni reported that NECA has received $5000 from the City which must be spent within one year. The Conservationists group has begun to develop and implement plans for spring activities.
I. Financial: No report
II. Membership: no report
III. New Edinburgh News: The NEN is experimenting with a commercial distributor for Beechwood businesses. A new volunteer residential distributor is needed.
IV. Traffic: no report (Gemma will look for a new chair to replace Rick Findlay). There have been two major accidents at MacKay and Beechwood in the past few days.
V. Web-site: The sign-up procedure has been simplified. Discussion groups are up and running. Andrew has asked Colin Goodfellow to respond to comments on the sculpture trail. Committee of Adjustment notices should be posted on the site.
I. Christmas party: It will be at Gemma’s house, and the CCC board will also be invited.
II. A public meeting on the Rockcliffe Air Force Base will be held at the Aviation Museum on November 29th.
III.The Soccer League is looking for a new convener.
Adjournment: By common consent the meeting was adjourned.
The New Edinburgh Community Alliance (NECA) has sent a letter to the National Capital Commission (NCC) outlining our community's opposition to converting the defunct Canada and the World Pavilion into an embassy or any other use that would prevent public access to the area and the Rideau Falls lookout.
In advance of the owners' official request to the City of Ottawa for minor variances, the owners and architect met with the Heritage & Development Committee to provide some information on the proposed development. Click here to read the letter which resulted from this meeting.