At Ottawa’s Tulip Festival the talk isn't just about the beautiful flowers. A new house in a prime location next to Dow's Lake is generating a lot of buzz.

Some comments from festival-goers:

  • “It looks more like a restaurant not a house… it's gorgeous, it's nice”
  • “Clearly they have their own vision, but I don't really like it to be honest”
  • “It's blocking the view from the neighbours, I find. If I was that neighbour I wouldn't be too happy “

Julie Harvey lives just down the road and says while she can appreciate the design she says “we used to have a very nice view with a big tree and now our view is a big black wall.” She adds “personally I like the house but maybe not here.”

Others say the addition could benefit the neighbourhood in the long run.

  • “I think the views would be fantastic, it looks amazing! I love the curves I mean it's a beautiful design.”
  • “It shows a renewal in the neighbourhood in the sense that people are investing in their homes, investing in their properties so that's a good thing”

The size of this house raised eyebrows for neighbours and for the city. According to the city, a building permit was issued "despite the ground level patio in the front yard and open stairway in the corner side yard not complying with the zoning by-law."

The committee of adjustment granted variances, or exemptions, so the patio could project 2.33 metres into the front yard instead of the max of 2 metres and a corner yard setback of 0 metres for an open stairway, instead of 0.6 metres as required by bylaw.

Ottawa city councillor David Chernushenko is always concerned when exemptions are granted and says “while there are some cases where it was inevitable there are far too many where people are really just testing to see how much they can be granted and then that will be used as a precedent by someone else afterwards”.

One passer-by said “I don't think it fits into the neighbourhood and I don't know how it got approved by the city hall”

Another concern: the loss of a city-owned silver maple tree.

Chernushenko says “there was a particular distinctive tree that was cut down that should not have been and the city is pursuing that with the owner/developer at the moment.”

While some neighbours are strongly opposed to what's gone up....others are open to change.

Neighbour Claudia Loschmann says “I actually feel it probably doesn't fit the space but it is a beautiful home… just in terms of trying to maximize the lot too much, but I am pro-modern design so I guess I have mixed emotions.”

CTV reached out to the owner of the home twice....they didn't want to comment on the story.

In June there's going to be a street party and the neighbours we spoke to today hope the people moving in will come and be a part of it.