The Finance and Economic Development Committee was given a status update on the O-Train Confederation Line project today. Progress is being made with fleet availability and testing of trains along the alignment. Building occupancy permits have been received for all 13 stations and final cleanup of stations is underway.
Rideau Transit Group has submitted a substantial completion notice which is being reviewed. The City continues to monitor critical elements of the testing and commissioning program needed to achieve Revenue Service Availability (RSA).
The Committee approved plans designed to stimulate urban renewal and vitality in Vanier along the traditional main street of Montreal Road. Through the development of a Community Improvement Plan in partnership with the Quartier Vanier Business Association, the City will provide grants against property tax increases from redevelopment. Additionally, three grants will be available for redevelopment projects which support affordable housing, arts and cultural activities, and social enterprises.
The Committee received an update from the Ottawa International Airport on its role as a major driver of the city’s economy and its upcoming renewal and expansion plans.
Finance and Economic Development Committee was also briefed about the first year of the Municipal Accommodation Tax. The four-per-cent tax has proven to be a successful source of funds for the tourism industry, generating $14.9 million in 2018. Of the funds collected, 75 per cent is going to sales and marketing efforts while 25 per cent is being invested in destination development initiatives.
The Committee received a report on the City’s procurement done in 2018, including $1 billion in contracts awarded by Supply Services, most of which were awarded under delegation of authority. The City awarded 94 per cent of its contracts competitively, in line with City policy of competitive procurement. City procurement strongly supports the local economy, with 90 per cent of purchased goods and services being local in 2018.
The Committee approved a brownfield grant of up to $634,059 to assist the development of a large block of land on Innes Road into a new subdivision. The land has contaminated groundwater that will require work totalling $1.26 million to resolve. The grant would cover half of these costs. Glenview Homes proposes to build 335 houses at the site, which will generate more than $1.7 million a year in increased property and education taxes.
The Committee also approved a grant of up to $214,600 over 10 years, under the Bells Corners Community Improvement Program, to assist financially with the redevelopment of a 2.8-acre piece of land on Robertson Road. The property owner is proposing to develop this site at 2165 Robertson Road, which is currently a surface parking lot and outdoor storage area. Two buildings would be constructed; a restaurant and heating/air-conditioning store and warehouse. The total project is estimated to have a value of $2.4 million and would create up to 100 new jobs at the location.
Items requiring Council approval will be considered on May 22.