The Phase II of the Clemow Estate Heritage Conservation District (HCD) Study was initiated in 2016 to analyze the character of the Study area and to research its history, development and evolution in order to identify the important character defining attributes that make it significant. The project involves:
- Conducting historical and archival research
- Undertaking a survey of buildings and structures, public and private landscape features, as well and important views within the area
- Consulting with community groups, residents, and business owners
- Establishing the boundaries of the area
The Study will ultimately make recommendations to City Council and inform the policies and guidelines to help manage change in the area in the form of a heritage conservation district plan.
The area under study includes three streets--Clemow Avenue west of Bank Street to Bronson Avenue, Monkland Avenue and, Linden Terrace. This area bookends the Clemow Estate East Heritage Conservation District that was designated in 2011. The study area features an eclectic mix of houses from the early 20th century in a variety of architectural styles, as well as Patterson Creek and its associated park.
In 2004 City Council directed staff to undertake a heritage conservation district study of Central Park and adjacent areas in three phases. Phase I included the area that was designated as the Clemow Estate East HCD in 2011. Phase II included Linden Terrace and Patterson Creek to the Rideau Canal and Phase III included Central Park and adjacent buildings west of Bank Street.
In 2014, the City received a request to add Clemow Avenue west of Bank Street and Monkland Avenue to Phase II of the study. Staff agreed with the amendment of the study area.
The Phase II Clemow HCD Study is estimated to be completed later this year (2019). Historic research and analysis of the character of the area has been completed. Staff are in teh process of drafting an HCD Plan with guidelines and policies for the area. A draft HCD Plan will be posted on the City’s website and available at public meetings, prior to being considered by the Built Heritage Sub-committee, Planning Committee and City Council.
Summary of Study Findings
In undertaking the research and analysis as part of the HCD study, it was found that the area expressed a distinctive and cohesive character. The study area is identifiable by the visual coherence of the impressive historic houses on wide tree-lined streets with recognizable aggregate cement lamp posts. The properties display a consistent spatial organization, relationship to the street and influences of early 20th century architecture. On Clemow and Monkland Avenues and Linden Terrace, these characteristics are uniquely attributed to the property covenants and design regulations implemented by the Ottawa Improvement Commission (OIC), the forerunner to the National Capital Commission. With few exceptions, the area retains the majority of the original early 20th century building stock.
The study revealed that this area has a concentration of built and cultural heritage resources, which are associated with individuals who figure prominently in Ottawa’s history, as well as important historical themes and events. The study revealed that this area merited designation as a heritage conservation district.
History and Evolution of the Area
The study area is a good example of an early 20th century residential neighbourhood near Ottawa’s downtown core in the Glebe. The area has evolved from a forested lot outside the city limits, to a mature residential neighborhood that forms part of Ottawa’s parkway and driveway network, largely built between 1906 and 1945. The streets within the study area represent one of the only designed residential extensions of the Ottawa Improvement Commission’s (OIC) parkway and driveway network in the capital. Developed as part the OIC’s early 20th century program to improve and beautify the city, Clemow Avenue was intended to be a “one of the finest residential streets in Ottawa” as part of the ceremonial route connecting the Central Experimental Farm with Parliament Hill.
(Linden Terrace at the Canal, c. 1910)
Between 1903 and 1910, Clemow and Monkland Avenues and Linden Terrace were conveyed to the Ottawa Improvement Commission from their former estates. The OIC implemented restrictive covenants detailing design guidelines for improving and maintaining the public realm. These streets, along with Patterson Creek and its associated linear park are also significant for their association with early Canadian landscape architect Frederick Todd as they reflect many of his 1903 urban planning recommendations the design of Ottawa, based on influences of the “City Beautiful” movement.
The area also reflects trends in early suburban development in the city, with the growth of this area in the Glebe being sparked in part by the arrival of the streetcar on Bank Street in 1891. The streetcar allowed the growing upper middle class to move out of the core of the city and into an area with impressive houses and a population within the same social class. The area was eventually bounded by streetcar lines on Bronson Avenue, Bank Street, and along the southern portion of what was historically Elgin Street (now the Queen Elizabeth Driveway), which supported and attracted real estate speculators and residential development.
The study area is also associated with a number of significant individuals and events in the history of Ottawa, as well as those responsible for the key subdivisions that led to the current pattern of development of the area.
Check out the historic registered plans of subdivision for the area:
The portion of the area along Clemow Avenue was originally the estate of former Senator Francis Clemow and his brother-in-law William F. Powell. The development of the estate is credited to their heirs; William Powell, known for reforming the Ottawa Police system as Chief of Police in the late 19th century, and Henrietta A. Clemow, the daughter of Francis Clemow. Henrietta is significant as an unusual example in Ottawa of a single woman in her 40s who was involved in real estate speculation in the early 20th century.
(Henrietta A Clemow; William Powell; and Henry Carleton Monk)
The portion of the area east of O’Connor Street was originally part of the estate of George Patterson and subsequently Henry Carleton Monk. George Patterson, for whom Patterson Creek is named, was Chief of the Canal Commissariat in 1826 and may have been the Glebe’s first settler. Henry Carleton Monk, for whom Monkland Avenue is named, was a prominent lawyer in Ottawa and alderman in Ottawa’s Central ward. Henrietta Clemow and her cousin William Powell formed Clemora Realty to develop their estate.
An analysis of the study area was undertaken in order to understand the defining features of the neighbourhood, and determine whether those features relate to and reflect significant periods of development. This analysis included mapping and analyzing information about each property including dates of construction, architectural style influences, and heritage resources within the landscape. This analysis helped to determine that the area contains a cohesive visual character, and informed the definition of the features that expressed that character.
The study has determined that the area is an example of a highly intact example of an early 20th century street car suburb in Ottawa. With very few exceptions, the area retains the majority of the original houses. The impressive detached houses on Clemow and Monkland Avenues and Linden Terrace were predominantly built within the same time period in the early 20th century which exhibit high quality workmanship. The houses feature details that express a mix of architectural influences and display similar design elements of the OIC’s covenants such as their consistent setbacks and shared relationship to the street.
Staff are in the process of writing a draft HCD plan for the area. Several meetings with interested owners and stakeholders will be held over the next few months to gather feedback. Owners and stakeholders will be notified when a draft is available for comment by mail. Following these meetings, an open house to present a draft is anticipated for early September. A draft plan will be available on the City’s website in advance of this meeting.
It is anticipated that the Built Heritage Sub-Committee and City Council will consider the HCD Plan this fall. Owners will be notified by mail in advance of when these meetings will occur should they wish to attend.
The Study Area for the Phase II Clemow Estate HCD Study overlaps with the study area of another ongoing City study called the Bank Street in the Glebe: Height and Character Study. This may affect the properties at the northwest, southwest and southeast corners of Bank Street at Clemow Avenue. In order to capture potential synergies between the two studies and provide convenience for interested residents, joint public events may be held for both studies
Meetings and Public Engagement
As We Heard It Report - Open House #2 held February 21, 2019
The second public open house even for the Phase II Clemow Estate HCD Study took place on Thursday February 21, 2019 from 7 to 9 pm at the Glebe Community Centre. It was a joint event with the Bank Street in the Glebe: Height and Character Study. Approximately 100 participants attended the event and 12 comment sheets were completed.
The following outlines the comments relating to the HCD project provided during the meeting, as well as the submission of written comments after the meeting.
If you would like to get involved or provide feedback on the Phase II Clemow HCD study, there are several ways to do so:
The study is being conducted in Capital Ward, Councillor Shawn Menard
Frequently Asked Questions
What is a heritage conservation district?
Part V of the Ontario Heritage Act allows municipalities to recognize and protect neighbourhoods, rural landscapes, main streets, or other areas of special cultural heritage value that have a cohesive sense of time and place.
Although each district is different, many share common characteristics. Heritage conservation districts (HCDs) may have:
- A concentration of heritage buildings, sites, structures, and cultural landscapes
- Visual coherence through the use of building scale, mass, height, material, proportion, and colour that convey a sense of time and place
- A distinctive character that distinguishes them from neighbouring areas
District designation allows City Council to manage and guide future change in the district through adoption of a district plan with policies and guidelines for conservation, protection and enhancement of the district’s special character. There are currently 18 heritage conservation districts in Ottawa, including New Edinburgh, Rockcliffe Park, Lorne Avenue, Briarcliffe and Centretown.
How is a heritage conservation district designated?
In 1975, the provincial government passed the Ontario Heritage Act, giving municipalities two ways to recognize and protect their heritage. Municipalities can designate individual buildings or structures under Part IV or heritage conservation districts under Part V of the Act. According to the Act, a district is designated when City Council passes a by-law establishing it. Under the Act, City Council must also adopt a Heritage Conservation District Plan to guide the management of the district over time. The Act also requires that public consultation be undertaken prior to the designation of a heritage conservation district.
What will district designation mean to me?
Once a district has been designated under the Ontario Heritage Act, City Council regulates changes and development in the district. This does not mean that change and development cannot take place. Rather, it means that changes and development are managed to ensure that they are sympathetic to and enhance a district's historic character.
If property owners wish to alter the exterior of their building, they are required to submit an application to the City of Ottawa. If the alterations are minor in nature, the application is reviewed by Heritage Services staff and a heritage permit is usually issued within five to 10 business days. For more extensive, large scale alterations, the application will be reviewed by the Built Heritage Sub-Committee, Planning Committee and City Council. City Council will consent to the proposed alteration, refuse it, or consent to it with conditions. An application for a permit under the Ontario Heritage Act has to be processed within 90 days or it is deemed to be approved. Permission must also be obtained prior to demolishing a building or constructing a new one. The interior of a building is not regulated through a heritage conservation district designation.
How will I know what type of change is acceptable?
A Heritage Conservation District Plan that includes management guidelines for property owners, planners, architects, and others to use in restoring or altering an existing structure in the district or constructing a new one on a vacant lot will be completed. The draft of the plan will be available on the City’s website for comment. You can also consult with staff in the Heritage Section to discuss the proposed work.
Why is the City looking at this area specifically?
In October 2004, City Council passed a recommendation to study the Central Park Heritage Conservation District and adjacent areas in three phases. Phase I included the Central Park Heritage Conservation District, Phase II included Linden Terrace and Patterson Creek to the Rideau Canal and Phase III included Central Park and adjacent buildings west of Bank Street.
The Central Park Heritage Conservation District - later renamed Clemow Estate East - was designated in 2011. In 2014, the Heritage Section received a request from the Glebe Community Association to add Clemow Avenue west of Bank Street and Monkland Avenue to Phases I and II of the Heritage Conservation District Studies.
What properties are included in the Phase II study area?
The Phase II study area includes Clemow Avenue west of Bank Street, Monkland Avenue, and Linden Terrace.
What are the advantages to designation under the Ontario Heritage Act?
Property owners will be eligible to apply for the City of Ottawa Heritage Grant Program for Building Restoration (subject to the availability of funding). There will be a reduction in incompatible changes to the character of the area because all changes will be guided by the Heritage Conservation District Plan and will have to be approved under the Ontario Heritage Act. Designated heritage districts often enjoy a renewed cultural and economic vitality not only because district designation highlights their special values but also because they are protected from decay and the intrusion of incompatible structures.
Will I have to restore the exterior of my building to its original condition?
No, heritage designation does not require an owner to restore the building. If an owner wishes to restore the exterior then matching grant assistance is available from the City (subject to the availability of funding).
Will I require City Council permission to make interior changes to my building?
No, a heritage conservation district designation will not affect the interior of your building. The normal requirements for a building permit would still apply.
Will my taxes go up?
Similar to any area in Ottawa, if your property value increases, your property taxes will increase accordingly.
Will my property value go down?
According to research conducted by the University of Waterloo Heritage Resource Centre, using a sample of 3000 designated properties in 24 communities, property values of heritage designated buildings are as good or better than the general market trends and the property values of heritage properties tend to be more resistant to downturns in the general market.
Will I be able to get insurance?
Yes. There are currently 20 heritage conservation districts in Ottawa and over 100 in Ontario. All of the buildings in these districts are insured.
MacKenzie Kimm, Heritage Planner
Planning, Infrastructure and Economic Development
Tel.: 613-580-2424, ext. 15203