Homeowners on Echo Dr. say their million dollar view of the Rideau Canal has been ruined by a new pedestrian crossing going in at Clegg St.

“It’ an eyesore, a cement block that’s cutting off 100 per cent of our view,” said Filippo Falsseto.

Falsseto’s family owns a home at the corner of Echo Dr. and Clegg St.

It’s the same location the city chose to install a large stairway and path leading up to the new bridge.

It is roughly the same height as the home.

“My parents they wanted to retire at this property because of the waterfront, it’s so calm and peaceful, and now you have a bridge, a cement block right in front of it,” he said.

There have been public open houses on the design of the crossing that will attach Old Ottawa East to the Glebe with entrances at Clegg St. and Fifth Avenue.

Throughout the process there were several recommendations and modifications done to the design.

In March 2017 there was a plan put in place to change the railings on the East stair from solid stone to picket railings.

Residents say they pictured it being similar to the bridge on Somerset.

“We didn’t anticipate it would be this large,” said Margaret Vant Erve, who has lived on Echo Dr. for more than 20 years.

Vant Erve says the city removed trees that lined the road so they could add a long pathway that leads up to the bridge. She says it has changed the area’s charm and privacy.

“Essentially people get to walk along here and look into our houses.”

The councillor for the area says he understands the concerns.

“I absolutely feel for the people who are now looking at concrete,” said councillor David Chernushenko.

He says not all homeowner had a waterfront view because there were trees in place to begin with.

Chernushenko says the city will put the greenery back in.

“Most of the concrete will be obscured (or) camouflaged by plantings afterwards. That’s the commitment we’ve made. The exact nature is still under discussion.”

Right now, residents near Clegg St. in Old Ottawa East need to walk up to Pretoria Bridge to get to Lansdowne in the Glebe. It is roughly a 25 minutes walk.

With the bridge it will only take a few minutes to cross.

Vant Erve says if the trees block the view into her front window she can live with that. She is not against the bridge - she just wishes it was not in front of her home.

Falsetto, who pays $12,000 in property taxes to own a waterfront property, wants to see those fees go down.

“I’m staring at a concrete block, no amount of trees can take that away.”

The Rideau Canal Crossing will be five metres wide by 123 metres long and allow both pedestrians and cyclists.

Construction started in 2017.

The first support beam for the crossing was put in place this week. It is expected to be complete by August 30th, 2019.