Thanks to all those who joined us at our Mid-Centretown CDP Open House last night

June 9, 2010 at 1:08 pm 8 comments

We think that the session was a great start to the project and were really happy with the turnout (100 people). We were really impressed with the cross-section of interests represented – a mix of opinions, attitudes and agendas is what every good neighbourhood planning process needs.

For those who couldn’t make it, you can download our presentation (4.5 MB PDF) and information panels (24.2 MB PDF) here. We will prepare a summary of feedback that we received from the discussions. The City is aiming to have the panels available mid-June and the summary of feedback will follow.

In the meantime, keep posting your thoughts, concerns, priorities and general feedback on the blog.

Entry filed under: Events.

Join Us For Our First Community Open House! – Participez à notre première réunion communautaire portes ouvertes! Does Mid-Centretown Exist??

8 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Carl  |  August 7, 2010 at 11:31 am

    This blog is a great public participation strategy for the CDP process… it should be used more often! Kudos to Urban Strategies/whoever designed this 🙂

    I hope you’re postering the neighbourhood/Jack Purcell Community Centre a bit with links to the site.

    This might be a bit ‘heavy’/expensive for a blog format, but a Web 2.0 application along the lines of http://www.shapevancouver.com/ could be a way to generate more traffic and attention for the site. Sort of a simple way for users to visually shape their neighbourhood and/or locate amenities, etc. Just a thought.

    Reply
  • 2. Christina Johnson  |  June 23, 2010 at 9:36 pm

    Thanks for posting the documents. I do have a couple of comments/questions.

    1. Are demographics being considered in planning (both current and projected numbers)? Seems obvious to me that they should be. For example, seniors will comprise an increasing proportion of residents in Ottawa, and in urban centres especially, where maintenance free (condo) living and proximity to amenities are key. Or we hear how families want to live downtown, but do not feel supported due to lack of facilities, excess traffic, etc…. any proposed model would need to address these issues at a demographic level.

    2. Will planning address compliance with the Ontarians with Disabilities Act (currently in effect, and to be fully implemented by 2025)? Even without the legal requirements set out in the Act, it’s good business sense to increase the accessibility of downtown instead of forcing disabled Ottawans to shop/eat/etc. outside of the core, since so much of downtown is currently inaccessible. For example, the Bank St. renovation could have been an ideal opportunity to make the area a lot more accessible; can we do better in future development and avoid expensive retrofitting later?

    Reply
    • 3. Ross  |  June 24, 2010 at 2:17 pm

      Hi Christine –

      Yes, demographics will be considered and will be based on 2006 Census data.

      Your second point is an important one. I agree with your thoughts about needing to avoid expensive and in-efficient refits. One of the recommendations in our report will be that all new developments and public realm projects must adhere to the requirements set out in the Ontarians with Disabilities Act. Larger scale redevelopments (both buildings and streets) are the perfect opportunity to create a more accessible Mid-Centretown.
      Ross

      Reply
  • 4. Nancy Oakley  |  June 14, 2010 at 11:36 am

    I am also a resident of the area who attended the Information Session last Tuesday. I have a few questions arising from that event, so please bear with me!

    First, does the design team plan on updating the Heritage Conservation District Plan in conjunction with the CDP? There is clearly a need to have all planning documents in order, and the HCD Plan is a very important set of policies relating the character and development of our community. If you aren’t planning on updating the Plan, why not? And what then is the plan when approaching heritage issues?

    I am a little confused- the project is focused on the study area of ‘Mid-Centretown’, but the plan will update the ‘Centretown Secondary Plan’. Will this document apply to all of Centretown, or just Mid-Centretown, or what? Why was the decision made to only concentrate on Mid-Centretown, and not include the other areas of the neighbourhood in the consultation process?

    I am also curious- where did the decision to initiate this plan originate from? Requests from the Community, from the City Planning department? Somewhere else?

    Also, one person in the Q&A portion asked if you would be able to post the RFP for this project- will this be done soon?

    Would you be able to post relevant documents related to this project, on either the blog or city website? Specifically can you make available the HCD Plan (and corresponding Study, if available), as well as the original Secondary Plan? To get a better understanding of the issues at hand, having all planning documents related to Centretown available for dissemination is important.

    Apologies for the length, and I look forward to your reply.

    Reply
    • 5. midcentretown  |  June 15, 2010 at 2:03 pm

      Hi Nancy – no worries about all the questions – that is what this forum is all about! I will take a stab at answering your points – if you have these questions, I am sure that others will too.

      1. In partnership with the City, our heritage specialists, ERA, are looking at opportunities to make the HCP more rigorous in its definition and identification of what “heritage character” means in the Mid-Centretown. Our approach will be to fill in some of the information gaps to make the document a bit stronger across the area’s most important heritage areas.

      2. The study is not an update of the Secondary Plan. Any recommendations that come forward will need to be approved by Council before any updates to the Secondary Plan are made. They will be done by the City, not by the study team. Our study is very much focussed on Mid-Centretown because this the area facing the greatest development pressure in Centretown, but has the least social amenity to support growth.

      The consultation process is open to any resident – from any neighbourhood!

      3. I believe that the study originated from the City. That said I understand that both the community and Councillor Holmes also wanted a review to better understand what kind of community amenities and services exist in the area today as well as what might be required in the future to ensure a successful neighbourhood.

      4. I do not know if these are available, but you can ask the City directly at midcentretown@ottawa.ca

      5. The HCD is not available in digital form. The Secondary Plan is available through the City’s website at:
      http://www.ottawa.ca/city_hall/ottawa2020/official_plan/vol_2a/former_ottawa/centretown/index_en.html

      Hope that answers your questions – thanks again for taking the time and look forward to hearing more from you.
      All the best
      Ross

      Reply
  • 6. Richard Akerman  |  June 12, 2010 at 12:49 pm

    It’s great to see the presentations posted – I wish I had been able to attend the first meeting.

    To further open up the consultation, it would be great if the underlying data from the presentations (particularly the 3D model) could be released as part of Ottawa’s open data initiative

    City of Ottawa – Open Data Ottawa

    Opening the data would provide even more ways for the residents of the area to analyse and visualise Mid-Centretown.

    I have also posted this idea to the DataOtt site – Mid-Centretown open data.

    Reply
    • 7. midcentretown  |  June 14, 2010 at 9:26 am

      Hi Richard – I am not 100% sure what the Open Data Initiative is, but I have forwarded your comment onto the City to see if this is something that we could do. We are more than happy to share our data and work with anyone who wants to see it and test it.
      Ross

      Reply
  • 8. Robert Hamilton  |  June 10, 2010 at 7:33 am

    I am a mid-centretown resident that attended part of the June 8 event.

    One aspect that was not fully addressed relates to Special Events. From parades to protests, festivals to visiting dignitaries, mid-centretown residents are frequently affected by these city-wide events. Not that they are necessarily an inconvenience. In fact, some choose to live here specifically because of its proximity to events taking place a stone’s throw away. So even though major events often do not take place in mid-centretown, it is nonetheless highly affected by them.

    I therefore invite you to take into consideration the implications of Special Events on transportation and security throughout the study area. Street closures, parking restrictions, traffic re-routing as well as design implications for such Special Events.

    An example of urban design elements accommodating Special Events are the tiered sidewalks on Mackenzie Street bordering Major’s Hill Park. They are intended to facilitate crowds lining the streets when visiting dignitaries use this route. Although I am not suggesting tiered sidewalks in mid-centretown, it does serve to illustrate that Special Events do need to be taken into consideration.

    Reply

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Welcome!

Welcome to Mid-Centretown Tomorrow, the official project blog for the Mid-Centretown Community Design Plan, commissioned by the City of Ottawa! This is the place to learn about and participate in discussions regarding the future of Mid-Centretown.

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