Public consultation closes on LeBreton Flats redevelopment bids
Members of the public who have not had their say on the LeBreton Flats redevelopment bids are out of time. The public consultation period wrapped up Monday night after nearly two weeks.
Photographs and information about the two proposals had been on display at 340 Albert and the Canadian Tire Centre for interested members of the public. The National Capital Commission was also seeking input online. More than 5,000 surveys were filled out since the public consultation period began on January 26.
The two highly anticipated, multi-billion dollar proposals for the 9.3 hectare former industrial park were released January 26, 2016 after a bidding process that began in September 2014. The National Capital Commission will choose its preferred bidder in March 2016 with approval expected from the federal government in Fall 2016. The winning bidder, however, will not be announced publically until early 2017.
"I think it is long overdue," said Rob MacKinnon. "Having an arena and these kinds of things centrally located so people from Gatineau, the East and West, can come and gather in one area is a good idea."
Devcore Candarel DLS group, formerly DCDLS, has called its concept for the 9.3 hectares of undeveloped land "LeBreton re-imagined." The group plans to turn 55 acres into a multi-use space over the next 15 years, with a Ripley's Aquarium, the world's largest skateboard park, a car museum, a skydiving wind tunnel and a new NHL-sized rink at the helm of its bid.
"I think it's an ideal time for Ottawa to grow and to expand. The LRT is going to change the dynamic. So if not now, when?," said Daniel Peritz of Canderel Property Management.
IllumiNATION LeBreton, a concept by Ottawa Senators' owner Eugene Melnyk and other backers of the Rendezvous LeBreton group, plan on creating a subsidized gathering place for Canadian military on a short or long-term basis, a new home for the Canada Science and Technology Museum, an event space with a watershow for storytelling on multiple level, and two NHL-sized rinks capable of hosting national and international hockey events.
"You look at the site and it's a 53 acre site and the major events centre is 4.5 acres, so that is less than 10% of what is a really fulsome, we think, fantastic plan," said Cyril Leeder, the President of the Ottawa Senators. "And there may be too much talk about hockey and the team and not enough about what this will do for the city."
Both proposals have an NHL sized sports and entertainment complex, a new Ottawa Public Library, green space for the public and new residential properties.
Although the Devcore Candarel DLS group said it wants the Ottawa Senators to play downtown in their venue, owner Eugene Melnyk told CFRA580's Evan Solomon Monday he has "zero interest whatsoever in selling the Ottawa Senators. Some things are not for sale at any price. It doesn't matter what number it gets to, some things are not for sale."