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July 12, 2018

Ottawa city council approves Trinity Group’s project along Albert Street corridor


The controversial plan to build three towers at 900 Albert St. — including one at 65 storeys, which would be the city’s tallest — was approved by city council Wednesday in a vote of 16 to five.

Coun. Catherine McKenney, who represents the ward where Trinity Group’s project is located, as well as councillors Mathieu Fleury, Tobi Nussbaum, Jeff Leiper and David Chernushenko, voted against the plan.

Mayor Jim Watson supported the project, arguing the location near the Bayview LRT station — where the Confederation Line and Trillium Line intersect — is the perfect place for intensification. The proposed project is a mixed-use complex including 65-, 56- and 27-storey towers, all on three-storey podiums above six levels of underground parking.

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“Staff anticipate that this development will add 1.6 million transit trips per year,” Watson said.

He also reminded his colleagues “this was a contaminated site and it was never going to be developed without council support.”

Indeed, council approved about $8 million in waived future property taxes to the developer in the form of a brownfields grant. The city also reduced development charges because the developer had to move a tangle of city infrastructure for the project to go ahead. 

Local residents and McKenney, the ward’s councillor, had a number of criticisms of the project across the street from Bayview Station, including that the proposed heights ignore a piece of the city’s formal planning policy, called a secondary plan.

That plan was developed through a time-consuming process between city staff, landowners and the community to come up with a blueprint for the Bayview area, and it called for maximum heights of 30 storeys.

Keep reading on CBC News