Lansdowne Park listed as endangered heritage spot
Melissa Juergensen, ctvottawa.ca
Published Wednesday, August 11, 2010 4:14PM EDT
The Heritage Canada Foundation has put Lansdowne Park on its list of top 10 endangered heritage spots.
The foundation says the redevelopment project, which includes plans to move the Horticulture building, is incompatible with the history and heritage of the 142-year-old park.
Lansdowne Park was nominated by the Glebe Community Association, which has long been outspoken against plans to redevelop the historic park.
"I think it definitely legitimizes our heritage concerns, and they are very real heritage concerns. We're not trying to save the crumbling pavement at Lansdowne. The site needs to be revitalized, but it needs to be done in a way that respects the heritage features, the designated buildings," said Joan Bard Miller, chair of the Glebe Community Association's Heritage Committee.
Fighting to protect history
However, developer Roger Greenberg has said the community association could care less about the building; it just wants to stop the redevelopment. He refused to comment to CTV Ottawa about the issue on Wednesday.
But Bard Miller says that's not the case. She insists the association wants to make sure the park's history is protected.
"It's unfortunate that it's being framed as such an ‘us and them' thing because I assure you that there are a lot of people who are very concerned about the heritage of the park, its attributes, its designated buildings," Bard Miller told CTV Ottawa.
"They're not trying to stop everything, they're not anti-development."
Moving the Horticulture building
Although the Horticulture building has a heritage designation, it has not been maintained over the years and is boarded up because of peeling lead-based paint.
The city says the Lansdowne Partnership Plan will relocate the building to the park's front yard, preserving it in the process.
The plan calls for the building to be used for the indoor component of the Ottawa Farmers' Market, as well as a possible location for arts, education and children's programming.
The city says if the building doesn't get moved, it risks being swallowed by its new surroundings.
The redevelopment project includes renovating Frank Clair Stadium, building 350,000 square feet of commercial retail space, 250 housing units, and transforming Lansdowne's front lawn into an urban park.