In April the IPCA met with Mizrahi Developments to discuss the proposal to build a mixed-use building at 1451 + 1445 Wellington Street (Proshine and Bella’s). Very early in the process, in the pre-design and pre-application stage, a public meeting was held on April 9, 2013 at Fisher Park School by the developer, who has since purchased the property, to seek community input on their proposal. Subsequent meetings were held with the IPCA, other nearby community associations, as well as with immediate neighbours/property owners.
By August, two sets of plans were developed for Mizrahi. They incorporated most of the elements proposed by the participants at the various meetings. Both options would be constructed according to the highest green construction norms, use high quality materials, have the entry way directly into the building off Wellington West at the east end of the Bella’s property, (as far from the Island Park intersection as possible). All garbage collection and service deliveries would take place inside the building, and the developer would finance, execute and maintain the revitalization of the small adjacent parkette.
One design was a ten-story option by Roderick Lahey of Ottawa and the other, a twelve-story option by Page and Steel of Toronto. In both options, Mizrahi would be seeking more than the nine and six stories currently called for at the site under the Wellington West CDP (see pages 61 and 62) to ensure the commercial viability of the project given the high costs associated with the soil decontamination effort required to build on that site.
Another series of meetings were held with the local community associations as well as with the directly impacted neighbours to present the plans and ask for participant feedback, including a preferred option. The Page and Steel option gained the most support: Its stepped back terracing creates a less imposing mass on Wellington, its setback from the neighbours in behind is larger, and it includes an additional 2 meters setback at the front, providing for a wider sidewalk. The developer presented the shadow studies to show that the terraced form of the Page and Steel design has essentially the same shadow impact as would occur in a CDP compliant design without the terracing.
Mizrahi has produced and distributed an “undertaking/consent” document in which they committed to their promises made regarding the development. Some of these undertakings include:
– Access will be from Wellington and to the far east
– All parking (visitor and building based), garbage collection and service deliveries will be internal
– Will convert the “road allowance” (understood to by the neighborhood to be a park) to the west of the property to be a more sculpted park with a playground structure and cycling link.
The proposed development appears to have the makings of a very unique building, one commensurate with this very important intersection. The design and finishes (limestone cladding), may very well raise the bar on development in the area.
Mizrahi plans on holding an open public consultation session in early December at a date to be determined. Residents are encouraged to attend to learn more about what is being planned, as the development will not proceed without community support.