This site uses JavaScript. Please enable JavaScript in your Browser and reload the page to view the full site.

2016

January 7, 2016

590-650 INDUSTRIAL AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Controlex Corporation; David S. McRobie Architects Inc.; Holzman Consultants Inc.

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for their presentation and for the attention that has been paid to pedestrian connections and the walkability of the site in particular.
  • The Panel does not have an issue with the larger floor plates proposed to reflect the change of tenants.

Building Design

  • Many of the efforts to break up the facades and provide transparency on buildings is successful. The Panel encourages the proponent to continue to include as much transparency on the buildings as possible, especially along Industrial Avenue.
  • The Panel discourages the use of EIFS in the projects. Cementitious panels or cement board would be a preferable building material.
  • Consider redesigning the awnings reflect the industrial train yard heritage of the area. Materials such as iron rather than canvas may help to achieve this.

Site Plan / Circulation

  • Given that the west-most building will likely be broken up into several units, the unit closest to Industrial Avenue should be a use that will help to animate the central space. A coffee shop, restaurant or another social animator may help to bring life to the streetscape.
  • Explore possibilities to continue to strengthen the emerging streetwall by integrating signage into buildings or filling in the central space with an element such as a patio or a gazebo. If the parking is to remain, consider additional screening, street furniture and avoiding locating hydro infrastructure at grade.
  • The Panel fully supports the proponent’s efforts to promote the walkability and pedestrian network within the development. The sloped walkway from the south is an especially strong element.
  • The Panel recommends that staff and the proponent investigate the possibility of adjusting the location of the sidewalk along Industrial Avenue, so that it is closer to the buildings and protected by a strip of landscaping between it and the road.
  • Consider a more urban condition for the vehicular entry at the west of the site. A tighter turning radius and removal of the “pork chop” would be preferable.
  • The Panel supports the location of the truck dock.

Landscaping

  • An additional four trees in front of the central parking lot would help improve the scheme. The proponent is encouraged to increase the continuity of street trees along Industrial Avenue.

Sustainability Measures

  • The Panel applauds the proponent’s efforts to incorporate solar panels on the roofs of the development and recommends continuing to explore sustainability measures such as stormwater management, swales and white reflective roofing.

105 CHAMPAGNE AVENUE SOUTH | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Ashcroft Homes; M. David Blakely Architect Inc.

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for their presentation.

Building Design

  • The Panel recommends more strongly articulating a podium condition along Champagne Avenue. This will help to create a more pedestrian-friendly edge and also will contribute to wind mitigation. The location of the podium could be aligned with the black masonry and P.C. stone on the front facade.
  • The building design of Phase 2 doesn’t necessarily need to replicate Phase 1 so closely. The matching of the aesthetics creates the image of a complex, rather than individual buildings and from a distance they will appear as a one single large building. Continue to study how Phase 2 might complement Phase 1 with a similar vocabulary, but identifiable differences such as large glazed areas rather than punched windows, a change in the coloration of glass.

Microclimate

  • The Panel has significant concerns regarding the potential wind impacts that the buildings will generate on the streetscape and courtyard space. It is doubtful that the current mitigation strategy will be sufficient in creating a comfortable pedestrian realm. The Panel strongly recommends re-examining how these impacts will be mitigated.

Central Court / Public Realm

  • As the zoning is fixed on this site, the Panel recommends focusing on strengthen the public realm and open spaces to ensure that they are comfortable, liveable and welcoming.
  • The Panel supports the central pedestrian courtyard and encourages the proponent to continue to improve it as a comfortable pedestrian area. Consider further minimizing vehicular access (or limiting it to emergency vehicular access) and removing temporary parking spaces. A simplified design for the space, with less built form and clutter is also recommended.
  • The Panel recommends reconsidering the use of poured concrete as a primary material in the courtyard, as it is a difficult material to achieve a good aesthetic with. Explore other materials in the courtyard including more wood, especially in the screening elements.
  • The proposed prairie grass will have difficulty surviving in the courtyard, given the limited amount of sunlight that the space will be exposed to. Prairie grasses typically need almost full sunlight to survive.
  • Rather than have raised concrete planters, consider integrating the planters into the ground or a more open landscaping treatment.
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent and staff consider what future linkages between the site and the park may be desired and design the courtyard with sufficient flexibility to accommodate these possibilities.
  • Consider relocating the street trees closer to the edge of the site along Champagne Avenue to make a stronger contribution to the pedestrian realm.

February 3, 2016

151 & 153 CHAPEL STREET | Formal Review | Official Plan Amendment, Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Trinity Development Group; B+H Architects; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for demonstrating the evolution of the building design. The composition is quite strong and recommendations are primarily directed at refining the nuances of the design and the relationship with the public realm. The project is well suited to the site, will be a good addition to the area and will help to restore Rideau Street.

Rideau Podium

  • The Panel recommends relocating the retail entrance of the building to face Rideau Street and not the Privately Owned Publicly Accessible Space (POPS). This will avoid having the POPS read as a vestibule for the building.
  • Even if a large format retailer is located on the ground floor, the facade should be broken up through articulation to read as smaller storefronts and help to re-establish the rhythm of a traditional mainstreet.
  • Transparency of the ground floor windows and visible animation within the building will also be key to a successful facade along Rideau Street.

Beausoleil Podium

  • The Panel appreciates the differentiation of the design of the Beausoleil podium from the Rideau podium but recommends additional gestures to help tie it to its context and break up the glass into smaller volumes.
    • Incorporate textured materials such as stone and brick to help to link the podium to the neighbourhood and give more solidity to the facade.
    • Explore opportunities to break up the podium along Beausoleil Drive into smaller parts by establishing a rhythm or series of solid gestures.
  • Resolving the details of the Beausoleil entrances to the residential tower and the transition from indoor to outdoor public space will be critical. The entrance currently is tucked away in the corner, but it will likely be an important focal point. Perhaps the design or materials of the walls and floors of the interior space could read as part of the outdoor space to create a sense that the two spaces are extending into one another.

Materiality

  • The composition of materials is quite strong, but the area is traditionally composed of textured materials, not glass. Consider integrating more textured materials into the scheme such as stone and brick, especially around the glass openings and at grade.
  • The use of wood articulation is quite strong.

Public Realm

  • The Panel strongly supports the prioritization of pedestrians through the proposed redesign of the intersection of Chapel and Beausoleil. If it reads well as a pedestrianized space, it may become a pleasant neighbourhood connection. Greater curb extensions may also help to slow traffic.
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent continue to study how the POPS might be animated. Permanent benches will be one key element, but it could perhaps also be thematically tied to the concept design for the park, which looks playful. It should not simply read as an extension of the sidewalk.
  • Chapel Street has the potential of becoming a very pleasant pedestrian connection between Rideau Street and Beausoleil Drive. Explore opportunities to combine the truck entrance and the car garage entrances.
  • Additional street trees would help improve the public realm and pedestrian experience. Consider continuing the line of trees completely along Chapel Street. Grates at the base of the trees would be a preferable alternative to planter boxes, so that pedestrians could walk beneath the canopy.

Podium Rooftop

  • Consider incorporating shared space on the rooftop of the podium.

112 MONTREAL ROAD | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | DCR Phoenix; Vince Colizza Architect Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for working with the subcommittee of the UDRP. The proposal has improved since the last iteration, but there are still opportunities for it to become stronger scheme.

Massing / Building Design

  • The Panel recommends exploring possibilities of adjusting the massing to free additional space at grade between the towers. The bulkiness of the buildings and their proximity to one another will create tight pedestrian spaces that will be in shadow at almost all times of the day. Wind impacts will also likely create uncomfortable conditions at grade.
  • The buildings appear to have begun to differentiate themselves, but at the proposed size and scale, they still appear quite bulky and similar. From a distance, they will appear as a single mass. To help improve this, the Panel recommends exploring the following:
    • The slab building (Building D) contrasts with the other towers, in that it is more linear in form. It could be further differentiated by lowering its height to about five storeys and redistributing the mass along the Vanier frontage and stepping up towards the north. This would also help to free-up additional space in the interior of the site and improve light penetration.
    • Adjusting the footprint of Building A to have the geometry respond to the curve of Vanier Parkway and provide a break in the orthogonal layout of the buildings.
    • Softening the corners of some of the buildings may help.
    • To differentiate the Buildings A and D from the others and bring a greater degree of urbanity to the Vanier edge, consider reconfiguring the mass as a six-storey streetwall with glass towers rising above.
  • Consider integrating small retail units at the base of Buildings A and D at the two corners next to the central pedestrian axis and Vanier Parkway.
  • The urban design analysis needs to place greater consideration on how the proposal will fit into its context. For example, shadow studies should include impacts on adjacent sites and massing studies should speculate how the gas station site may eventually develop.

Semi-public Space

  • The re-arrangement of the pedestrian axis and improvements of the semi-public space has strengthened the project since the last version.
  • City staff should secure a surface easement to ensure that the semi-public pedestrian spaces remain publicly accessible and are not fenced off in the future.
  • The Panel encourages the proponent to continue to explore means of carving out more meaningful public spaces in the scheme and reducing the amount of hardscaping. The spaces between buildings will likely read as private courtyards facing onto a shared walkway.
  • Consider shifting the drop-offs of two of the buildings to create additional space for pedestrian areas / landscaping in the central north-south axis.

Sustainability

  • The Panel encourages the proponent to continue to explore additional sustainability measures. A development of this scale should incorporate additional sustainability measures.

2280 CITY PARK DRIVE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | RioCan REIT; Barry J. Hobin & Assoc. Architects; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel supports the architecture and open space strategy of the proposal. The composition of buildings is interesting and this project will be an important step in the evolution of the area.

Context

  • How this development responds to the adjacent areas and how likely they are to evolve or remain the same will be important. The CSIS compound north of Ogilvy Road will not likely change in the near future. City Park Drive and the private drive are not currently retail streets and are unlikely to evolve as one in the future.

Massing / Building Design

  • The entire layout and composition of the scheme is quite strong and interesting and the design is striking. The Panel recommends continuing to study the complexities of the edges of the site.
    • Consider designing the facade of the podium that faces the highway differently than the one facing the park.
    • Rather than have a MUP located along the Transitway, the southern edge of the site may be more efficiently used as a two-storey parking garage. The structure would help to act as a sound barrier to the rest of the development. It could be single or double aisle and have the north side screened with two-storey liner buildings, amenity areas, or lobbies.
    • The exposed wall of the parking structure adjacent to the Queensway will need to be properly designed, treated or screened. Consider a green wall, design enhancements, ample landscaping and/or a rooftop amenity space in this location.
    • The proposed use for the gap between the site and the LRT station requires refinement. The parking shown next to the station should be pulled back to create a green landscaped space in front of east tower and next to MUP.
  • Explore the possibility of further differentiating the three towers through design, massing or materiality:
  • Perhaps the middle tower could be the tallest of the three, as it has a different orientation than the other two.
    • There could be more variation in the height of the banding.
    • Consider reducing the amount of black-coloured material on one building to set it apart.
  • The scale of the podium is appropriate for the project. It will be important to have the park framed with a three-storey podium.

Connectivity 

  • The Panel recommends carefully studying and defining the future connections for pedestrian movements in this phase and all future phases. The anticipated pedestrian links to various destinations are not entirely clear. How desire lines will evolve over time should also be taken into consideration.
  • It will be a challenge to make a MUP along the back of the development and along the Transitway pedestrian friendly and safe. Consider locating the multi-use pathway (MUP) along City Park Drive and not redirecting it down to the Transitway and then back up again.
  • Consider including a new public park facing City Park Drive to the east of the two buildings. There will likely be little market for street-related retail, the park will complement the MUP, and it will serve as a visual forecourt to the towers.
  • The Panel is very supportive of the proposed ring-road surrounding the central public space. This will help to avoid the sense that it is a privatized space. It should read as a public park.
  • Explore opportunities to have the ring road better connect to the west. As an alternative to the ring road completely around the park, it may also function as a horseshoe-shaped public street with a separate private lay-by to the south (see attached sketch).

6176 HAZELDEAN ROAD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Capital Commercial; Alexander Wilson Architect Inc.

General Comments

  • The Panel members are generally pleased with the proposal and mostly refinements to the scheme are required at this point.

Massing / Building Design

  • The massing of the building is derivative of the interior programming, but it creates very long facades. The Panel strongly recommends incorporating additional vertical articulation to the Hazeldean facade to help break it up visually. Consider integrating noble materials such as limestone, differentiating treatments in the masonry, or adding depths and breaks to help achieve this.
  • The Panel is strongly opposed to incorporating a mansard roof into the scheme. This will be counterproductive to achieving a greater degree of verticality in the expression of the building and would not fit with the vocabulary of the rest of the building.
  • Consider metal pickets rather than glass on the Juliet balconies or a combination of the two if glass is required by the Ontario Building Code. This would help add to the ornamentality of the building.

Parking Structure

  • The parking shelter could potentially be an elegant addition to the site and may add an element of visual interest to the parking lot.
  • Explore the possibility of choosing glass as the material for the parking structure or incorporating solar panels onto its roof.
  • If the location of the structure is flexible, the Panel recommends relocating it to the Hazeldean edge to have it tie into the landscaping. Hedges could be lined between the pillars to help screen the rest of the parking from the street.

Landscaping

  • Consider modifying the landscaping between the Neil Avenue, so that it could potentially serve a purpose for the residents such as a loop pathway, with occasional small flower gardens.
  • Additional details should be provided on the walkway connection to the park area. It will be an important component of the plan and it currently appears quite schematic. It should be well lit, shaded in the summer and offer protection in the winter.

March 3, 2016

135 BARRETTE STREET (ST-CHARLES CHURCH) | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | ModBox Inc.; Linebox Studio Inc.; FOTENN Planning & Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel recognizes and appreciates the proponent's admiration of the site, which is evident in the rich social program proposed by the scheme and the adaptive reuse of St-Charles Church. However, the Panel still has significant concerns with the density being proposed and the impact that it will have on neighbouring buildings and especially the heritage value of the church.

Massing

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for the changes that have been made to the scheme since the last review of the proposal. The removal of some the massing from the forecourt of the church is an improvement on the plan.
  • The proposed building is still too massive for the site and the density of the project needs to be reduced. An L-shaped building, rather than C-shaped is recommended for the site. The portion of the building which encroaches into the forecourt should be set back further. Ideally, the building's footprint would also not extend beyond the front facade of the church, to leave the entire forecourt open as a community connection and gathering space.
  • The proposed building height along Barrette Street does not seem compatible with the existing low-rise buildings on the street. A 15m or five-storey building, possibly with a stepback above the townhouses would be an appropriate height in this location.
  • The eight-storey building height proposed between the church and the abutting lot is appropriate.

Building Design

  • The Panel recommends quieting and simplifying the architecture of the building in terms materiality and detailing, especially above the second and third floors. It should not be in competition with the heritage church, which should be the "jewel in the crown" of the site.
  • Consider a simpler, more solid masonry base to the building and a lighter top. The clay tile proposed for the townhouses along Barrette Street gives a richness to the base, but the upper levels (above the second or third floor) should be predominantly a quieter and lighter material such as glass. Minimize the use of coloured glass in the project.
  • The slotted windows are an effective contemporary interpretation of the church, but more could be done to pick up on this reference in the scheme.
  • Explore opportunities to adjust the design of the white stairwell on the north side. Capping or changing colour could help it to better relate to the heritage of the church. Alternatively, it could be simplified and integrated into the black element.

Public Realm

  • The Panel reiterated the importance of the forecourt of the project and its significance as a prized space and asset to the community. The space should be designed to be simple, neutral and programmable, and punctuated by trees. A simple design would help the church be interpreted as a stronger landmark and centerpiece of the site.
  • Large trees would fit well into the forecourt and could be positioned so as to not block views of the church.
  • The forecourt should ideally be framed by the church facade and the buildings on the opposite sides of the street on all three sides. To allow for this framing, the L-shaped building would not exceed the front facade of the church in the west.
  • The landscape treatment along Beechwood Avenue should feel like it is part of the streetscape.
  • Consider relocating the public art into the forecourt of the project, rather than at the east end of the site.

April 7, 2016

852 BANK STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Currey Properties Inc.; Robertson Martin Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning & Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for their presentation. This will be a good fabric building, which will help bring density to an important location on Bank Street.

Massing / Building Design

  • The Panel expressed concern for the narrow dimensions of the light-well and what the implications would be for it in the event that the adjacent lots to the south were consolidated and developed under Traditional Mainstreet zoning. The proponent is encouraged to model potential development on adjacent properties to study how the light-well could respond to future conditions.
  • Explore opportunities to shift the stairwell away from Bank Street by several metres to help reduce the visibility of the rooftop projection from Bank Street. This may require reconfiguring some of the internal layout.
  • The site is quite tight, but the project has been handled well. In order to make some of the recommended changes to the floor plan, consider increasing the height of the building at the south east corner to five or six stories to free-up some additional space.
  • Consider carrying a consistent visual queue up throughout the entire chamfered façade.

Materiality

  • The Panel strongly urges the proponent to explore extending the brick all the way up the building, particularly if it incorporates simply detailed heritage features. Contextually, this would make more sense. Lintels and pilasters may offer solutions to structural issues.

Public Realm

  • The proponent should explore the possibility of setting the building further back on Bank Street to provide a wider public realm. This may also permit the chamfered edge to be emphasized.
  • The landscape feature along 5th Avenue is a strong component of the scheme. Consider what relationship will be established between the restaurant's interior space and the exterior terrace.

June 2, 2016

275 KING EDWARD AVENUE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Claude Lauzon Group Ltd.; KWC Architects Inc.; Novatech Inc.

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponents for making the changes from the previous scheme. The design has advanced nicely and the building will make a good contribution to the evolution of the street.

Building Design / Materiality

  • The Panel recommends exploring an overall simplification of the expression of the building. Consider a simplified architectural language, fewer materials and more of an emphasis on brick.
  • The prominence of the spandrel panel should be reduced by choosing a darker coloured panel.
  • Consider giving the ground floor more prominence on the street. The ground floor to ceiling height could be increased by 0.5-1.0 metres. If this is not possible, it would help to remove the sills and bring the glazing to grade. The retail entrance should also be located at the corner rather than on Clarence Street.
  • It will be important to choose a high-quality material for the soffits of the building.
  • The north facade of the building on King Edward Avenue has minimal articulation and will be quite prominent from the street, looking south. Consider additional articulation to help add visual interest to the building.
  • Cement board or metal panel are recommended for the upper floors rather than EIFS.
  • The Panel recommends removing the awning above the sixth-floor balconies.

Murray Street Frontage

  • The Panel recommends exploring how the portion of the building along Murray Street may be further differentiated from the rest of the building. It should read as a related, but separate element. This may be achieved through a minor difference in height, colouration or materiality.
  • Consider either removing the fourth floor or lowering the height of this portion of the building to help it appear as being distinct from the King Edward portion. This may also be achieved through stepping back the fourth floor from the street by removing the walk-in closet from the floor plan.

Ground Floor Plan

  • The Panel recommends pushing the elevator shaft further back from the King Edward facade. It will allow residential units to face the mainstreet, reduce the visibility of the mechanical penthouse, and give more flexibility to the commercial floor plates at grade.
  • Explore the possibility of shifting the parking ramp that enters from Clarence Street to the east, closer to the property line. This extra space should allow the ramp to fully turn around and descend to the P2 level, eliminating the need for a second entrance along Murray Street.

Streetscaping / Landscaping

  • Rather than only have artificial turf in the courtyard, consider integrating plant material that will survive despite the low levels of direct sunlight.
  • As the plan for the streetscape is refined, be mindful of how bollards, seating, lighting, utilities, and anything else will contribute to clutter in the public realm and how this may be reduced as much as possible.
  • The renderings provided may not be accurate and are showing more space for landscaping than is actually there. This requires additional attention, as there may not be sufficient space for trees between the sidewalk and the building.
  • If it is not possible to eliminate the parking ramp on Murray Street, then screening it should be investigated.

5731 HAZELDEAN ROAD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Nautical Lands Group; KWC Architects Inc

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for the presentation and for the information on the evolution of the design, which was helpful in understanding the complexity of the program and the site.
  • It is recommended that the file return for a second formal review with the UDRP.

Building Design

  • The Panel supports the strong street edge that the office/retail buildings create and the front doors which face the street, however, they read as very long buildings. It is recommended that the proponent explore means of breaking them down visually into smaller components or making them more visually distinct:
    • Make the two buildings less similar in appearance by varying articulation and materiality.
    • Continue to break down the facades of two buildings to give them the appearance of being a row of smaller buildings. The variation in the cornice line helps, but it looks like a veneer, because it has no depth.
    • Remove the arch element, which ties the buildings together. There could still be some form of weather protection in its place or perhaps a glass pavilion.
  • The signage plan shown on the office/retail buildings may not work well on a two-storey building. Consider a fascia treatment at the first floor and a different treatment on the second floor.
  • Perhaps the retail link between the long-term care building and the office/retail building could be located at the second storey rather than at grade.
  • Explore the possibility of incorporating more glazing into the long term care building to make it more welcoming in appearance. If some of the architecture from the independent living building could be incorporated into it (such as the punched windows or similar materials), it would also help to better articulate it.
  • Consider giving the independent living building more of a “campus” feel to it by breaking down the mass into smaller linked pieces. The building would have three distinct vocabularies, but would have commonalities in articulation or materials that tie them together. The middle portion, where the dining room is located, should be revealed and recessed to achieve this.
  • A pre-cast brick-like material would be better for the independent living building as opposed to a metal panel.

Site Plan / Circulation

  • The Panel strongly recommends exploring alternative road and building layouts to improve the development’s relationship with the park and reduce the impact of the driveway. The current configuration prevents the creation of a strong connection between the park and the buildings/courtyard by locating the driveway, drop-offs, garage entrances and loading on this edge of the site.
  • One possible solution to this issue would be to relocate the access road behind the office/retail buildings rather than at the rear of the site. The loading activity for the long term care building could be moved to the north-east corner of the site. The independent living building could be shifted towards the park to provide more space for these functions to occur. If a fire route is still required, it could be designed using permeable pavers.
  • Another option may be to swap the locations of the long term care building and the independent living building and relocate the drop-off/loading closer to the vehicular entrance of the site.
  • Any efforts that can be made to help integrate and connect the site to the neighbouring properties would help the scheme. An improved connection between the courtyard and the public open space is especially important.
  • The landscaping plan is an exciting component of the scheme. It will enrich neighbourhood and the space will likely be well-used by the residents. The plan should include many comfortable seating areas for the users.
  • The Panel recommends undertaking a wind study to understand what conditions will be created in the courtyard space.
  • The Panel strongly supports the proponent’s decision to locate the majority of parking underground and having the courtyard feature open to the public.

113 and 115 ECHO DRIVE | Formal Review | Official Plan Amendment and Zoning By-law Amendment | Uniform Developments; Barry J. Hobin & Assoc. Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel is fully supportive of this well composed and crafted design, which will make a good addition to the neighbourhood.

Building Design

  • The scale of the project works well in this context and responds to the adjacent buildings.
  • The Panel strongly supports the long balconies on the facade facing the Rideau Canal. The outdoor spaces that they provide will add an important dimension to the building.
  • The horizontals and verticals of the prairie-style aesthetic and the wrapping of the corner are two of the strengths of the design. The quality of the design of the building should not be depreciated by value engineering. The glazing should be curtain wall, not window wall, the planters should be integrated, and the balconies should remain cantilevered to achieve the full effect of the design.
  • Consider adding additional articulation to the stone wall on the east facade to improve views of the building from Main Street.

Ground Plane

  • To help animate the ground plane, improve connections and make the live-work units feel more welcoming and accessible, the porch areas should be lowered to grade. A planting edge could still be incorporated.

Landscaping

  • The abundance of greenery on the balconies and around the building is an important part of the scheme. If integrated planters are to be included, consider incorporating an irrigation system. 
  • Ensure that the same planting quality of the front of the building continues into the back.
  • Special attention should be paid to the landscape treatment of live-work units as ensuring visibility to the units and integrating effective signage may be a challenge. A more urban condition is desired, but the planters, trees and setback will make it difficult to achieve this. Rather than columnar maple, consider a species that has a higher canopy to maintain views.

July 7, 2016

1140 WELLINGTON STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Tamarack Developments Corp.; Barry J. Hobin & Assoc. Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel is appreciative of the proposed design, but several Panel Members found that the principles of the alternate scheme would better relate to the heritage building and help break down the appearance of the larger building.

Building Design

  • Given the size of the proposal and its adjacency to a low-rise heritage building, the tower may work better as a lighter, more neutral background building. The other buildings in the area should carry the visual sweep of the street.
  • The alternate scheme in the submission package was quite successful. Whereas the use of a similar material on the tower as on the heritage building in the foreground detracts from its prominence, the alternate scheme provided in the submission package was successful in providing a lighter backdrop. The changes in building material and articulation in the alternate scheme also break down the mass of the building quite well.
  • The lightness and modern design of the glass side entrance works well. It is a positive feature of the scheme.

Materiality

  • The emphasis of the brick on the corners of the building makes it look heavy. Consider pronouncing the difference in height in the masonry on the north and south sides of the tower. The brick volume on the north side of the building should be lowered.
  • The change of materials at the base of the building intended to tie it to its context works quite well.
  • Alternatively, study the possibility of lightening the corners of the building and making the centre parts brick to lighten the entire building.

Open Space

  • The Panel fully supports the open space in front of the heritage building, which has the potential to become a pleasant space. Consider continuing the line of street trees along Wellington in front of the open space. It would not detract from the open space and would reinforce the sweep and curve of the street in this location.

1166 WELLINGTON STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Reichmann Seniors Housing Development Corp.; Barry J. Hobin & Assoc. Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel appreciates of the design of the proposal but suggests that the proponent continue to study the corner, including the relationship with the entrance to the building and the possibility of expanding it.

Building Design

  • The proposal would be improved by a more substantial stepback above the podium. Any means of achieving should this explored. Perhaps modifying the projecting bays may offer a solution as to how the stepback might be increased.
  • The Panel is concerned that the large banner signage facing Wellington Street may detract from the building. This should not be a permanent advertisement space for the operation.

Corner of Building / Open Space

  • The Panel is generally supportive of the architecture of the building, but the corner seems unresolved. Continue to explore means of improving the relationship between the building and the open space.
  • The Panel recommends exploring opportunities to increase the significance of the public space by notching the mass of the building inward or removing some of the landscaping buffer.
  • Additional glazing on the corner of the building is recommended to create a stronger connection between the interior and public space. Either the composition of the entire corner feature could include more glazing, or could be included at least at the base of the building. Modifying the floor plan may offer clues as to how this may be achieved.
  • The proponent is also encouraged to study whether moving the vestibule to the open space to the corner or closer to it would help animate it. If it is moved to the corner, it should not detract from the public feel of the space.

Materiality

  • The use of masonry in the design is excellent. A natural stone should be considered for the base.
  • The mechanical penthouse may be quite visible. It should be clad in a noble material in keeping with the rest of the architecture and not value-engineered.

Landscaping

  • Serviceberry may be adequate for the Parkdale side of the development, but a larger species of street tree is recommended for Wellington Street. Ensure that sufficient soil volumes have been provided for the trees to grow.
  • The Panel recommends moving the street trees along Wellington closer to the curb in the public realm. Rather than have a semi-private condition, the base of the building should be integrated into the streetscape. The building should help residents integrate into civic life rather than segregate them from it.

560 RIDEAU STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Richcraft Homes; Graziani & Corazza Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for their response to the comments. The scheme has improved, but further refinements are recommended.

Building Design

  • The Panel recommends stepping back the 13th and 14th storeys of the building from Cobourg Street and exploring means of lightening the top of the building. Reducing the thickness of the white horizontal band and/or absorbing the balconies (or making them Juliet balconies) may help to achieve this lightness.
  • The Panel recommends continuing to study how the break between the high-rise and low-rise portions of the building might be emphasized. The two parts of the building should have the appearance of family of buildings rather than one mass.
    • Consider incorporating additional glazing and recessing the middle portion further to help emphasize the break.
    • Perhaps the materiality of the top level of the mid-rise building could be similar to the high-rise portion to help tie them together.
  • The framing gestures on the building are quite effective.
  • The doorway feature seems like an afterthought. The wood is a nice effect, but needs to be strengthened and given prominence.

Open Space / Landscaping

  • The Panel is disappointed to not have a more detailed plan and perspective renderings of the Privately Owned Publicly Accessible Space (POPS). The POPS is a strong aspect of city building and it has the potential to be a pleasant space, but finding the right geometry and balance of seating, planters and open area will be important.
  • The Panel supports the use of pavers that replicate the wood used in the former corduroy road. Carrying the same paving into the street is an interesting idea and will help to strengthen the POPS.
  • The use of street trees helps establish a good rhythm along the street.

590 (594) RIDEAU STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Richcraft Homes; Graziani & Corazza Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for the changes that were made to the scheme and generally feels that this will be a nice piece of architecture for the street.

Transition to Neighbourhood

  • The Panel recommends reducing the feeling of height in the building as much as possible.
  • Moving the chillers to a more central location in the building may be an effective way of improving the transition to the neighbourhood.
  • Explore the possibility of having eight-foot ceilings rather than nine-foot ceilings. This may be a good compromise in terms of mitigating the height of the building.
  • To avoid overlook issue on the rear of the building, consider applying a ceramic frit to the glass on the balconies. This would also be applicable to the Rideau frontage to conceal clutter on balconies.

Top of Building

  • The Panel recommends removing the parapet above the mechanical penthouse.
  • The Panel recommends continuing to study the floating canopy. If there is a concern that it is too heavy or is working against the rhythm of the building, perhaps it could be localized at the corner of the building above the corner feature. Alternatively, rather than have a floating canopy at the top of the building, the cornice could perhaps extend from the roofline.
  • Explore means of harmonizing the glass at the top of the building and making it less apparent that it is spandrel glass.

Corner Feature

  • The Panel is generally supportive of the building’s expression at the corner. The glazing works quite well.
  • Perhaps wrapping a canopy or brick around the north-west corner above the ground level could help to tie the north and west façades together.

September 1, 2016

667 BANK STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application |Milito Investments; Vincent P. Colizza Architect Inc.

**John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has abstained from commenting on this file.

General Comments

  • The Panel believes that the scale and massing of the proposal are problematic and the transition to the adjacent properties needs to be improved.

Massing

  • The Panel recommends lowering the height of the proposed building to four storeys. There is a precedent in the area for a building of this scale in this location.
  • The density proposed for the site is too high and should be reduced through additional setbacks and lowering the building height. Reducing the number of units in the building may also help eliminate the need for underground parking.
  • A rear lane would be a better solution for the scheme rather than a garage entrance. This would not only be a more cost-effective option and simplify the servicing of the building, but would offer additional separation from the neighbouring residential property.
  • If the parking garage entrance is to remain, it should be setback from Clemow Avenue. The built form should transition to the adjacent property not only in section but also in plan view.

Building Design

  • This is a transitional site for the neighbourhood. The building should take on pavilion building qualities rather than infill building qualities, being visible and prominent from four sides.
  • The density on the site is creating large blank-wall conditions on the east and north facades. The building should not turn its back to the park, but rather turn to face it.

Landscaping

  • The existing retaining wall on the site may not have completely prevented the roots from the large tree to the north from growing under the site. The Panel recommends taking care to identify the location of the roots of the tree to ensure its survival during development.

Materiality

  • The Panel recommends reconsidering the zinc material proposed for the top floor. A simple limestone base with brick cladding above would be more appropriate for a main street building of this scale.

October 6, 2016

2025 MER BLEUE ROAD (SmartREIT Orleans Phase 1) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | SmartREIT Inc.; Alcaide Webster Architects; Lloyd Phillips and Associates

Massing

  • The Panel encourages the proponent to explore the possibility of shifting Building H to the east edge of the site and rotating it to face Mer Bleue Road. This may offer an improved condition, as it would permit for the servicing to be shared on a central laneway between Phases 1 and 2. It would also create the opportunity for an improved north-south pedestrian walkway.
  • Consider changing the location of the drive-through and the loading area in Building N to reduce conflict from vehicular traffic from Innes.

Site Plan / Public Realm / Landscaping

  • The Panel recommends reconsidering the landscaping strategy in order to improve the likelihood of tree survival. Rather than spreading the trees evenly across the site, it would be preferable to consolidate them on pedestrian paths, along the edges of the site and in amenity spaces. This will allow the trees to grow better and will contribute to more robust pedestrian spaces and connections. Perhaps a concentration of trees could help terminate a view or serve as a focal point.
  • The corner of the site will be important to the success of the project. The Panel encourages the proponent to continue to strengthen it as an animated public space. Create a stronger civic gesture in this location by shifting Building J to the south and combining the patios for Buildings J and K. The patio for Building K would also do better on the west side of the building, rather than on Innes Road.
  • The Panel recommends a more aggressive screening strategy for the loading bays of Building H on the south of the site.
  • Consider pulling street trees around the corner of Mer Bleue and Innes Road to protect the public space and patios.
  • Explore opportunities to have the green system north of Innes Road flow into this site somehow. Perhaps the plantings could be the same species.

Building Design / Materiality

  • The Panel expressed concern with the blank facades in the proposal, especially on Building K. The large blank facades should be broken up with the treatment of the elevations including moments and gestures that create a rhythm.
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent consider cement board or metal panel as an alternative material to stucco.

University of Ottawa STEM Building (150-160 Louis Pasteur Private) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | University of Ottawa; Perkins +Will; Novatech Engineering; Lashley + Associates; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for a comprehensive presentation and appreciates the explorations that have been studied.

Views / Massing

  • The Panel recommends continuing to study the short and long views of the project, especially from the Colonel By Drive, from the Rideau Canal landscape, and from Queen Elizabeth Drive. Explore the possibility of reconfiguring the mass of the building to improve views of “Les Yeux.” Consider flipping the floor plate so that the north portion protrudes further towards the Canal than the south portion, to help enhance the view of the art piece? If the floor plate cannot be flipped, the western end of the south facade will be very visible from the south. Perhaps it could be improved by wrapping a similar frit to the artwork around the corner or given a different look in some way.

Building Design / Materiality

  • Explore the possibility of having the materiality or fenestration pattern change from facade to facade. Perhaps there could be a change in the frit pattern to maximize passive solar benefits. The design of the north facade could also relate to the plaza design in some way.
  • The Panel supports the use of frit and would support wrapping it around the entire building, should that be feasible. Small details such as its colouration and how it is lit at night will need to be carefully considered to achieve the desired effect.
  • The proponent is encouraged to re-capture the effect achieved for the façade treatment in the initial study shown in the submission package. The consistency and the balance of solidity and transparency of the dot pattern is more successful in that concept.
  • The Panel recommends exploring possibilities to minimize the impact of the mechanical penthouse and better integrate it with the building design.
  • Rather than have “Les Yeux” stretch across the entire west facade, study the effect of framing the art piece with a white band.
  • Consider extending the building over the loading dock to better integrate it. If this cannot be done, the Panel recommends continuing to study how the loading dock might better be screened.

Open Space / Circulation

  • The Panel recommends re-envisioning the plaza north of the building. It should read as a gathering space or urban room, rather than solely as a circulation space. The concept drawing comes closer to capturing the potential of the space.
  • Perhaps the motif of circles in the facade of the building could carry into the plaza to create interplay between the two.
  • The ramp on the north side of the building needs more design development. Continue to study how the ramp could be shifted to increase the size of the plaza. The upper level should read more as a porch to the building overlooking the plaza.
  • The Panel recommends redesigning the north-south laneway on the east side of the building as a shared space for pedestrians and vehicles:
    • Consider combining the pedestrian walkway and the laneway and blurring the lines between the pedestrian and vehicular realms.
    • Explore the possibility of extending the plaza space across the laneway to have it read as pedestrian realm that vehicles are permitted to pass through.

November 3, 2016

1161 HERON ROAD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Manor Park Development; Woodman Architect & Assoc. Ltd.; Momentum Planning and Communications

General Comments

  • The scheme has made some great advancements since it last came to the UDRP, however, the Panel still has concerns regarding the weak base along Heron Road, the relationship between the linear park and the development, and the blank condition of some of the facades.

Building Design

  • The Panel strongly recommends strengthening the base of the building along Heron Road to make it read as a distinct, continuous element:
    • The base should be one material and the materiality should not carry up into the tower.
    • The tower needs to step back from Heron Road at least 2.5 to 3.0 metres at the sixth floor.
    • The tower should consider different materials, colour and more vertical treatment to distinguish it from the base.
    • The cornice line of the podium should be strengthened.
    • The stepping down of the building towards the residential neighbourhood is good, but the lower part of the building should be raised to six storeys and pulled out towards the street to create a more consistent street wall.
  • The Panel is concerned with the largely blank wall conditions facing the public space and in the gap between the two buildings. The Panel recommends articulating these facades with glazing and balconies as if they were frontal facades.
  • Explore the possibility of wrapping the balconies around the corners of the buildings, similar to the fourth design concept on page 34 of the submission package.
  • The Panel recommends incorporating an entrance to the building along Heron Road to give the development more of a street presence.
  • Consider raising the cornice line at the first storey to at least the second storey. It could possibly be aligned closer to the top of the gateway.

Landscaping / Circulation

  • Developing a strong relationship between the landscaped area and the linear park will be important. The condition illustrated in the submission package creates an undesirable barrier and too weak a ramp leading up to the private space.
  • The proponent indicated that advancements have been made in the landscaping strategy, which have not yet been reflected in the submission package. These changes reduced the grade change between the public and private landscapes. The Panel strongly encourages these changes.
  • Consider redesigning the lightwells as glass enclosures rather than solid window wells.
  • The Panel recommends more of a traditional streetscaping condition along Heron Road. Just one species of street tree or a few alternating species would be more appropriate.
  • Explore the possibility of combining the loading with future development to the east.
  • Consider a new north-south driveway connecting Heron to Cecil; this will provide more options for both service vehicles and for cars accessing the underground parking garage ramp.

 

770 BRONSON AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | TC United Group; Jaber Limitless; Robertson Martin Architects

General Comments

  • This is an important site for the neighbourhood and the proposal has the potential to become a good corner building and addition to the street.

Context / Views

  • Consider the impacts that the irregular shape of the site will have on views of the building travelling east along Carling Avenue. The building will have a significant blank wall facing the west (shown on p.20 of the submission package). The Panel recommends eliminating the jog in the facade facing Carling Avenue to improve this issue.
  • The rooftop amenity space is a good addition to the scheme. Consider moving a portion of the projection closer to the edge, so that the rooftop space may be better seen from a distance. Also, explore how the rooftop may be lit to enhance night-time views of the building.

Building Design / Materiality

  • The Panel supports the references to an industrial building design.
  • In comparison to the rest of the context, this is a relatively small site and the building will need to work with the larger scale of everything around it. The Panel recommends wrapping the building around the corner more simply without the vertical element to make it appear larger. The wood material should be eliminated from the scheme.
  • To help achieve the building reading as a larger object, the windows should be as large as possible and the shifts in the height of the parapet should be reconsidered.
  • The Panel generally supports the proposed materials, but recommends an overall simplification of the composition.
  • Rather than have three bands of materials, explore the possibility of limiting it to two. The ground level to the fourth floor could be the same materiality. Subtle shifts and layering rather than of zones of colour will speak to the desired “warehouse” aesthetic and an elegant simplicity.
  • Alternatively, either the brick could be carried up the entire facade and areas defined using patterning or banding, or the ground floor could have a separate materiality from the rest of the building above.
  • The Panel cautioned that black frames can often look flimsy or visibly collect dust over time. Consider using another material such as limestone.

Landscaping / Public Realm

  • The Panel fully supports the proposed landscaping of the project.
  • Consider where utilities such as switch boxes and street light poles will be located in the public realm. They should not interfere with the experience at the ground floor of the building.

 

December 8, 2016

900 BANK STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application and Zoning By-law Amendment | Canderel Residential; Amica Retirement Homes; Barry J. Hobin & Assoc. Architects Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Urban Design

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the applicant for their presentation, which very clearly highlights the changes that have been made to the proposal. The scheme has evolved quite nicely. This is a full program on a difficult site and the proponent has done well to balance all the components.

Building Design

  • The limestone base works well on Bank Street but need not necessarily wrap around all sides of the building. A brick building would be more contextually appropriate for Monk Street and relate better to the neighbouring townhouses. The Panel suggests that the proponent continue to study the articulation of the six-storey mass facing Bank Street. The rhythm and articulation of the Bank Street facade was more successful in the previous scheme. The dark material at the top of the building may make it look bulkier.

Massing

  • Continue to explore means of transitioning the eight-storey mass to the established neighbourhood on Monk Street. A further stepback above the residential scale would assist with this transition. The Panel recommends relocating the courtyard to face Monk rather than Bank Street and stepping the Monk facade further back at the seventh floor. The mass eliminated to achieve the stepback may be relocated to the Bank side of the project. Consider aligning the courtyard recess on the Bank facade with Clarey Avenue, similar to how it is aligned with Melgund Avenue on the Monk facade. This would make for a more convincing urban design gesture and help to terminate the view. Further stepbacks and stepping integrated into the north facade of the building would help improve the transition along Bank Street.

Streetscaping / Public Realm

  • The Panel strongly recommends that the proponent continue to study the treatment of the public realm and how it can be seamless, uncluttered and prioritize pedestrians. Monk Street should carry the purpose of the lay-by. If this portion of the block had a consistent sidewalk, it would help integrate the building to the neighbourhood, rather than make it a focal point of activity and would strengthen the pedestrian realm. Consider integrating canopies onto the Bank Street facade. It may be a subtle, but effective way of transitioning from the Lansdowne aesthetic to the traditional mainstreet aesthetic north of the site on Bank Street.

 

195 HUNTMAR DRIVE | Formal Review | Plan of Subdivision, Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment | Cavanagh Construction Co.; Shenkman; HP Urban Inc.; FOTENN Planning and Design

General Comments

  • The policy context in this area is changing and this site is a piece of a larger development. Before the design details can be resolved, the bigger picture issues should be studied through an area study such as a Community Design Plan. The development of the various sites needs to be coordinated to avoid having the area develop as a series of “islands”. The Panel believes that this project would benefit from a focused design review session with some members of the UDRP to help tie the proposal to the greater area. It is recommended that City staff from other departments such as engineering and transit attend to help understand the constraints and vision for the area and to help it develop as a whole. Only once these larger issues are resolved can the details of built form or character of the buildings begin to be refined.

Context

  • The plan for the Kanata Town Centre plan has changed, as have the expectations for the high-tech industry in the area. The proposal needs to be studied in the greater context. Connections to other sites, intersections, the street hierarchy, the open space network, access to transit and the street and block pattern need to support a holistic approach that work with the greater community. This is a very large site and there is a good opportunity for its development to help make the transition to urbanity. Consider the phasing of the project, as it will likely not be developed all at once. How will connectivity be affected by the phasing and how will the site function in the interim? The sole driving factor should not be response to market demands.

Built Form

  • The development should aim to achieve a mixed-use, walkable and compact community and set the precedent for future change in the area. The transition from existing uses such as the auto-park will need to be carefully studied.Consider the development’s relationship to the draft plan of subdivision to the south at 173 Huntmar Drive. How will the low-scale buildings transition to the higher densities on the neighbouring site? It currently looks like some low-density housing is backing onto the street. This should be avoided.

Street Network

  • The Panel supports the proponent’s vision to have future north-south arterial evolve as a mainstreet rather than arterial road in character. The curvilinear street layout does not support the sense that the development will have strong pedestrian connections and support walkability. There will be many children walking through the residential neighbourhood to the high school, so strong connections and safe intersections to it should be a priority.

Land Uses

  • The proponent is encouraged to study the possibility of relocating the high-school to the west side of the arterial, which may help link it to the future park and have it better fit into the open space network.

 

1250 MARITIME WAY | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Claridge Homes Inc.; Riverstone Retirement Communities; James B. Lennox & Assoc. Inc.; Neuf Architect(e)s; Novatech Inc.

Massing / Building Design

  • The Panel recommends exploring opportunities to reorient the L-shaped building to face Kanata Avenue and Maritime Way. This would permit the courtyard to have a better relationship with Maritime Way and the building to have a more prominent architectural presence from the highway.If reorienting the building is not possible, efforts should be made to avoid having the building read as if its back facade is facing the highway. The blank south-facing wall, for example, should be animated with windows and/or architectural features. The mechanical penthouse will be a visible element and could be redesigned as an architectural feature. Possibly, natural stone could be located in “the elbow” of the L-shape and rise up the facade towards the penthouse.As the building will be quite visible from the highway and from a distance, the scale of the architecture facing the highway should respond to this. The design currently responds to the scale of the pedestrian, but should be larger so that the patterning and rhythm are more easily discernible from a distance. Consider a heavier cornice line on the building.

Site Plan

  • Continue to study the drop-off. With the front entrance, the retail, the vehicular drop-off and the loading, too many functions are creating a confused space and detracting from a sense of urbanity. It should read as a formal entrance and not a back-side condition. Are there any opportunities to relocate the loading or the entire drop-off to the back of the building? The Panel recommends continuing to study how pedestrian access to the retail units might be improved. Currently, it looks as though the convenience store will be accessed through the drop-off area, rather than a more direct connection to the sidewalk. The building will be exposed from all sides, so the location of transformers, gas meters and other clutter will need to be located strategically so as not to interfere with the public realm.

Landscaping

  • As the scheme progresses, a more detailed plan of the garden should be provided. It should not be fenced and should read with a certain degree of “publicness”. It is currently isolated, but as the area develops, people may use it to cut through. The courtyard garden currently seems under-defined. It is a large space and there is an opportunity to have more than just a planted open space. Consider a integrating a meandering pathway or a gazebo.
     

5731 HAZELDEAN ROAD | 2nd Formal Review | Site Plan Control and Zoning By-law Amendment | Extendicare; KWC Architects Inc; Nautical Lands Group

General Comments

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for returning for a second formal review with the UDRP, but expressed disappointment that is so little advancement in the design. As many of the major comments from the previous set of comments were not addressed, the Panel reiterates their previous recommendations and limits their comments to the Long-Term Care Building and the Main Vehicular Entrance. The Panel believes that there are fundamental issues with the proposed development and it will not be a positive addition to the area.

Main Vehicular Entrance

  • The Panel strongly recommends that the proponent continue to study the main vehicular entrance to the site from Hazeldean Road. Locating the garbage area at the main entrance is not appropriate. The signage for the site is important and should be shifted closer to Hazeldean Road. The parking area at the corner should be better screened with landscaping or removed.Consider wrapping the windows on the retail/office building further around the corner, even if they are blind windows. The poster on the Wellings building is not an adequate architectural response to animating the facade at this important corner.

Long-Term Care Building

  • The Panel has serious concerns with the treatment of the facade of the long-term care building, especially the east elevation. The elevations are too fragmented with material changes and there is too little articulation in the facade. Where there is a change in materials, the building should also be articulated and the facade either pushed in or pulled out slightly. The Wellings apartment building achieves this more successfully.