Panel recommendations

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January 6 and 9, 2023

1125 & 1149 Cyrville Road | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | WESTRICH PACIFIC CORP; HP Urban Inc.; J+S Architect; James B. Lennox & Associates Inc. 

Summary 

  • The Panel thanks the proponent for the presentation. There is support for the development addressing the missing-middle and the use of wood-frame construction.  

  • There is a recommendation provide some density redistribution on site to address concerns regarding the proximity of the project’s eastern wing of Building A to the eastern lot line. 

  • There is concern with the proximity of the fire route on the western side of the property to the residential units that abut it.  

  • The Panel provides recommendations to also increase connectivity from the site to its neighbouring context, aid in wayfinding on-site, and increase the size and amount of amenity area and landscaping onsite.  

  • While there is general support for the overall aesthetic, the Panel also recommends simplifying the façade and considering a base-middle-top model for the building facing Cyrville Road. 

 

Site Layout / Site Plan 

  • The proximity of the eastern wing of Building A to the eastern lot line is a concern. A minimum 5.5 metre interior side yard setback from the eastern property line should be considered. The proposed 3 metre eastern interior side yard setback is too tight. Consider that the abutting property owner to the east could replicate this layout, resulting in only a 6-meter separation distance between adjacent buildings for potentially a considerable length. Consider also that the inside corner unit in this location is problematic in layout and will get very little natural light. To address this issue, the Panel recommends eliminating this eastern wing and re-distributing some density elsewhere within the development. Building A can then be an “L” shape (or “hockey-stick” shape). The density can be redistributed with the following options:  

  • Go higher in the wood frame construction of Building A (above the 6-storeys currently proposed). Consider an 8-storey wood frame construction for Building A in the shape of a hockey-stick. 

  • Increase the tower floor plate size of the Tower for Building B. This could allow for 10 or 11 suites per floor instead of 8. There is the option to also increase the number of storeys in Building B. 

  • Option to do a mix of the above two options.  

  • The proximity of the fire route on the western edge of the site to the western arm of Building A is a concern. The lack of a buffer between the fire route and unit entrances is problematic and makes for undesirable living environment. People living in these units will open their door directly onto a fire route. There is concern this will also be a maintenance problem and raise accessibility and safety concerns for the entirety of the development. Landscape buffering is needed to separate the façade and the fire route.  

  • The central courtyard, and certain interior units, will see little sun. Revisions should be made to the Site Plan and building layout to increase the size of the interior courtyard and provide better access to light and soft landscaping to create a better living environment. 

  • There is concern that the important south-east corner of the site and building is dominated by a parking ramp and a transformer pad. This layout does not create a positive relationship between the building and the street. Consider the future context and what the project can give back to the neighbourhood at-grade. This is one of the most dynamic corners on site and it should alternatively animate the street and help establish the future streetscape of the area. 

  • Consider a different vehicular site access configuration to improve site layout. Having the only vehicular access via the fire route from Cyrville Road may not be conducive to a well functioning access or pick-up/drop-off area for the tower.  

  • Consider removing the surface parking that lines the eastern property line.  

 

Connectivity 

  • Greater consideration and thought should be given to how this development connects to its surrounding context/neighbourhood. Consider how all of the people moving into this development will access transit and amenities that they require. Following this, provide these pedestrian and vehicular connections clearly on the plan.  

  • Multi-Use Pathway (MUP) 

  • Aim to perceive and use the MUP as an opportunity to enhance this project. 

  • Consider providing a pathway connection between the MUP on-site to the MUP east of the site.  

  • Consider expanding the MUP to intuitively lead people to a ‘destination’ area along this route.  

  • Consider where people using this MUP can access greenspace/nature.  

  • Consider how people outside of this site will use this MUP and how this property can contribute to the neighbourhood with this MUP amenity. 

  • Consider how the vehicular circulation onsite can be best arranged; reconsider the at-grade parking and drop-off area.  

  • The drop-off area should be designed and integrated into the site layout so that it feels as though it is a part of the landscape design.  

  • The drop-off should serve both buildings 

  • Consider the use of pavers to make the drop-off multi-functional. 

  • Consider incorporating retail along Cyrville Road. This commercial use can positively shape how this site and the community will develop and relate to each other.  

 

Architectural Expression and Materiality 

  • Simplify the architectural expression on both buildings, particularly on the façade facing Cyrville Road.  

  • Aim higher than a hardy-board material for the project. A more durable material should be considered. 

  • Building A 

  • Simplify the façade by keeping the boxes and framing elements to just moments within the building façade that are associated with program changes or important views (rather than incorporated throughout the entire façade). 

  • Breaking up the façade along Cyrville is important to ensure adequate pacing and address the significant length of this façade.   

  • Use the formula of “base-middle-top” to help to guide the architecture of the façade facing Cyrville Road.  

  • Consider using the inside corner units in Building A for storage (such as stroller storage) as opposed to a residential unit because these units will get very little natural light. 

  • Raise the floor-to-floor height of the ground floor of Building A. Currently, it is the same height as other floors, and it currently appears compressed and less welcoming that it would be if it was taller. The taller floor-to-floor height at-grade benefits the architectural expression and also provides more flexibility in terms of uses, such as providing retail opportunities.  

  • Re-consider the location of the lobby. 

  • Building B (tower) 

  • Provide clear definition of the main entrance for Building B.  

  • Building B appears to be floating in asphalt. Consider altering the landscaping and site layout to address this. More landscaping would also be more consistent with a “west-coast vibe” that this development currently exhibits.  

  • Two alternative massing proposals were suggested: 

  • A Panel Member suggested: Remove the east wing from the mid-rise building, move the tower to the south-west corner of the mid-rise building (stack Building B on top of Building A) and open up the remainder of the site as open space / landscaped area.  

  • A Panel Member suggested: Construct two towers with the remainder of the site given over to landscaping.  

 

Landscaping, Amenity Area, and Sustainability 

  • Building multi-residential at this scale is inherently a sustainable way to build housing and the Panel thanks the applicant for considering this “missing middle” and rising to the challenge of building more density in this form at this location.  

  • The Panel recommends increasing the amount of open space, soft landscaping, landscape buffers, tree planting, and amenity area on-site. Landscape buffers are particularly needed to separate the building façade and fire lane, as well as between the building facades and the driving lanes/parking areas. 

  • The landscape plan is not consistent with the renderings provided. The renderings are not fully representative of the landscape design. Furthermore, consider how to successfully achieve the tree planting over the parking garage as shown on the plans (this may be difficult and unrealistic).   

  • A sustainability-oriented Landscape Architect is important to have on this project in order to ensure that the stated sustainability goals are actually achieved. Their focus can be on issues such as safety, CEPTED, lighting, streetscape, energy, and liveability. Having a sustainable development can benefit the operations of a long-term purpose-built rental building.  

  • Consider reducing the amount of parking. The proposed amount of parking to be provided does not reflect the site’s proximity to the LRT.  

  1. The Ottawa Hospital Phases 3 & 4: Central Utility Plant and Main Hospital Building (930 Carling Avenue and 520 Preston Street) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | The Ottawa Hospital; HDR; GBA Group; Parsons 

 

The Ottawa Hospital Phases 3 & 4: Central Utility Plant and Main Hospital Building (930 Carling Avenue and 520 Preston Street) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | The Ottawa Hospital; HDR; GBA Group; Parsons 

Summary 

  • The Panel appreciates the considerable amount of work done on this project to date. The renderings provided within the Experimental Farm context are helpful to relate the project to the broader landscape. 

  • There is broad support for the natural landscaping approach taken to mitigate the visual impact of the Central Utility Plant / Road E and parking lot. 

  • Recommendations related to improving the façade treatment include extending vertical architectural elements over the mechanical floor level to minimize the horizontal   band-effect as well as addressing the amount and use of aluminium materiality throughout.   

  • While there is support for the changes to the main entrance and arrival, there is also concern with the loss of pedestrian space and a sense that there should be more work done to establish a sense of ‘arrival’ in this area.   

 

Architectural Expression and Materiality 

  • The overall façade is sophisticated in that folding of the aluminum panels within the aluminum façade appears to bring movement to the surface. However, there is concern with the predominance of aluminum, given the context and orientation of the building. There is also concern that the aluminum material will not weather as gracefully as other materials. To address this, explore: 

  • More variation and texturing in materiality in the façade 

  • Introducing a warmer, more organic, or noble material. A warmer material or aluminum colour could work better with the naturalistic landscape, rather than a cold metallic colour.  

  • Consider ways to down-play the pronounced horizontal effect of the mechanical ‘band layer’ floor. To address this, explore:  

  • Giving more attention to the architectural details throughout the façade.  

  • Extending the vertical architectural elements over the mechanical floor level to mitigate it’s horizontal banding effect. It is currently a flat aluminum band; once this is re-evaluated, it may create a ripple effect in the architectural response on the rest of the building façade.  

  • Consider recessing this band within the façade. The horizontal band currently appears to be flush with the rest of the façade, with an exaggerated sill above. The playful metal expression should be most prominent element of the façade.  

  • Consider a continuous height. There appears to be varied height of this band depending on the elevation. The south elevation (p.47) illustrates the band as very prominent at the back of the building.  

  • Explore how the base of the building is perceived and relates to the band. Consider how the band fits in the overall make-up of the way the building presents as a base-middle-top structure.  

  • Consider incorporating more architectural elements from the historic Sir John Carling Building, such as cornice details or something with rhythm to it  

  • Provide the necessary detail in the colouration of vertical elements.  

  • In summary, efforts should be made to tone down this band element by introducing vertical elements, maintaining a specific height, and setting it back from the façade.  

  • The Panel appreciates the applicant’s consultation with the First Nations in establishing the Land and Sky concept in the architecture.  

  • Explore a stronger architectural treatment at the corners / wing endpoints of the building. Consider how the corners of the building provide breaks and intersect and how they align with both the podium level and intersect with the mechanical floor.  

  • Provide a quieter architectural expression at the top of the building. Currently, the architecture feels busier towards the top, according to some panel members,  due to the single storey expression above the double storey expression. Consider a two-storey expression as the building throughout the facade. A strict datum does not need to be adhered to and the smaller bar can afford to be bracketed by the two-storey expression in the lower storey wing.  

  • Consider having the two long wings read as two connected buildings, rather than two long wings at the same height.  

 

Arrival Area 

  • Explore providing a stronger, defined sense of arrival to the main entrance. Currently, the pastoral-feel/naturalized landscape approach is applied to the entire site. This is in keeping with the surrounding arboretum; however, this approach needs to shift and evolve at the point of entry into the building. To address this: 

  • Identify how best to reflect/address the enormous scale of the entire development in the scale of the entryway. Consider how the scale of the arrival area relates to the public realm and the public nature of this arrival space. Identify the pinch points in this arrival area, including the location of doors.  

  • Identify and address how people will arrive in the space differently (driving, transit, walking, cycling). Currently the cycling infrastructure is not to scale with the scale of the building.  

  • Provide a balance of pedestrian and vehicular needs. While there is certainly a need for some surface parking and vehicular drop-off area, this should be balanced with a larger at-grade plaza/pedestrian space.  

  • Offer a level of formality brought to this front entrance. It should be distinct from the surrounding naturalistic landscaping approach to the surrounding context.  

  • Consider providing a grand allee with a more fully developed landscape design. 

  • Consider that the round-about should lead toward a destination, rather than feel like a continuous circular element. 

  • Consider the significance of how lighting may impact this arrival area.  

  • Consider incorporating the ‘healing’ aspect of the function of this building in how the building presents itself initially to people. This healing element could also be tied into the landscape design such that the arrival area presents itself as a healing place for nature as well as people.  

 

Landscaping and Buffering 

  • The Panel supports the use of natural landscape features to mitigate views to the Central Utility Plant / Road E and parking lot and buffer the visual impact of this development on the surrounding experimental farm. 

  • The grading and scale of the visual buffering the landscape features provide is helpful in managing the visual and vehicular impacts of this development on the surrounding area.  

  • Explore acoustic buffering, particularly on the north side of the building and around the loading dock. This will help to further mitigate the sounds of the development on the surrounding area. 

  • Develop the landscape design in the main plaza further. The Panel is skeptical that there is enough soil depth in the main plaza to support the substantial amount of trees illustrated.  

  • Along with a planting plan, establish landscape principles that will aid in the development of landscape design narrative. A more rigorous analysis of the landscape is required to ensure that the landscape design captures what this property, within its broader context, represents. The principles should include both the composition as well as the species and relate to the surrounding context.  

  • For the arrival area, consider that when one arrives at the main entrance one should feel like the hospital is part of the experimental farm, rather than arriving at a generic hospital void of the arboretum context.    

  • Consider the long-term impact of incorporating sustainable design through landscape and architectural treatment. By integrating nature as much as possible in the design, through green roofs, bird-friendly design, use of pollinators, etc. the development could contribute positively to nature and people alike.  

December 2, 2022

377-381 WINONA AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Azure Winona Inc.; CSV Architects; NOVATECH 

Summary 

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. There is strong support for the development; the scale is appropriate, and the building typology will set a good precedent for the neighbourhood as it creates a transition to the low-rise residences on the north. 

  • The corner configuration is generally supported, but the Panel recommends the materiality and the datums at the ground to be studied further. 

  • Recommendations were provided to improve the landscape area at the corner of Picton Avenue and Winona Avenue and to create a more formal and robust treatment that would complement the building's warehouse aesthetic. 

Materiality 

  • The Panel appreciates the façade and warehouse aesthetic and the use of sustainable, noble materials found in the neighbourhood, such as brick, that complement the street. The precast, pilaster and brick detailing create a successful two-layer effect. 

  • The composite material is appropriate on the upper two floors; however, the dark brown or black composite panels appears heavy, particularly at the corner where the cantilever is opaque and is a departure from the warehouse aesthetic. The Panel recommends using brick and articulating the corner while keeping the proposed cladding upper floors. 

  • The upper floors are well detailed, but the window treatment and penthouse colour create an over-scaled and dominant effect. The proponent should consider changing the colour of the upper floors and penthouse cladding to a lighter material such as cement grey, wood or metal that will be compatible with brick and tie the project together. The continuous glass guard around the perimeter is at odds with the warehouse aesthetic and should be reconsidered.  

  • There is an opportunity for the entrance canopies to be lighter structures to allow more light to penetrate, have finer detailing, and be of a residential scale. The proponent should consider extending the canopies and supporting them with steel rods or chains that relate to the warehouse aesthetic. 

  • The proponent should re consider the glass guard at the ground level and instead consider a picket rail system that would be more in keeping with the warehouse aesthetic and could be removed during winter to create a seamless transition between the public and private realms. 

  • The irregular datum of the window and doors on the ground floor should be studied further.   

Architectural Expression 

  • The Panel has concerns with the wall treatment and window placement on the south façade due to its visibility from Richmond Road and proximity to the south lot line. The Panel recommends the proponent introduce a commercial use at the corner and, rather than creating a blank wall, introduce a pilaster pattern and reconsider the soffits to create a more appealing façade to animate the view from Richmond Road. 

  • The Panel notes the zero setbacks and questions the rainwater runoff condition and the relationship to the adjacent lots. The proponent is encouraged to consider the adjacent lot's context and future development and its effect on the units facing the lot. 

  • The ground floor unit facing Picton Avenue feels isolated, and its location should be reconsidered. 

Public Realm and Landscaping 

  • The Panel believes the landscape should reflect the character of the neighbourhood. The proponent should consider setting the building back to provide more than 1.5 metres of soil for tree planning. 

  • There is a concern with the location and proximity of the bike racks to the entrance and their treatment in the streetscape. 

  • There was a suggestion to integrate hydro transformers within the building and to consider safety through a CPTED lens. 

Sustainability 

  • The Panel appreciates the sustainable measures presented but notes that the dark material is not conducive to improving the building's sustainability objectives. The proponent should consider increasing on-site greenery by adding climbing vines, trellises, and planters on the roof and terraces.  

961, 967, 969, 973, 979 WELLINGTON STREET WEST AND 26, 36, 40 ARMSTRONG STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | ML DEVCO; rla/architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; Projet Paysage 

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file. 

Summary 

  • The Panel expressed strong support for the development. The project is an example of a building typology and character that is desirable in this evolving neighbourhood. The Panel appreciates the proponent's efforts to work with Staff and the community and to implement the Panel's previous comments, which has resulted in a sophisticated building with enhancements to the public realm. 

  • The Panel believes the mid-block connection on Wellington Street will create a strong relationship between Armstrong House and Somerset Square. Therefore, the Panel suggests refining the landscape and considering the treatment of the street, including providing trees and terraces that can contribute to the public realm. 

Materiality and Architectural Expression 

  • The Panel appreciates the use of rusticated stone on the Armstrong façade as it relates to the historic building, but some Panel members believe the rusticated stone could relate to the Armstrong House better if the dressing of the stone was more contemporary, additionally the proponent should consider extending the stone treatment to the fourth floor and wrapping it around the entire bay to create a three-dimensional quality. 

  • From the southwest perspective, the uppermost roof of the building protrudes above the balcony. The proponent should consider removing the projections from the upper volume to create more negative corners to lighten the upper volume.   

  • The precast panel appear co-planar with the brick on the façade on Hilda Street. The Panel considers that if the stone were dressed with a simpler, tighter horizontal pattern, it would relate to the brick better without introducing a third pattern and material. 

  • The corner could have a stronger presence as it meets the precast panel for further simplification, given that the window wall interruption is complicated; the proponent should also consider eliminating the breaks in the brick base in favour of simplicity. 

  • Compatible, subordinate, and distinguishable materials should be considered when working with a heritage component. The Panel suggests the proponent use the stone for the entire lower volume for a more cohesive appearance, with a similar colour as the one found in the Armstrong House, but expressed in a contemporary manner to quiet down the façade on Hilda Street. 

Public Realm and Landscape 

  • The Panel is cognizant that the zoning and the building mass are set, but the Panel recommends widening the aperture for approximately the first 1.5 metres from Somerset Square (then reverting back to the existing width) to the mid-block connection to strengthen it. 

  • The Panel notes the plans and streetscape elevations show a different stair treatment for the townhouses. The preference is for the stairs to face the street; the proponent should work with the grade and explore the possibility of having the stairs meet the street to create a better relationship with the streetscape. 

  • The Panel appreciates the proposed landscape layout, but the soil volume available for landscaping between the townhouses and the street appears insufficient. The Panel believes the landscape could be more robust with flowering trees and hedges. 

  • The Faberge inspired carpet idea and pattern in the courtyard create a jewel-like effect, and the scale of the drop-off area has a Parisian feel which is appreciated. A well-designed lighting scheme will add to the courtyard experience for residents and create something special for the City. Additionally, the entrances to the units could be centred to strengthen the idea of symmetry already present with the carpeted pattern. 

  • The proponent should consider streetscape elements such as lighting and bollards to create a safe and positive atmosphere year-round. Additionally, the proponent should consider introducing wayfinding, signage, and programming. 

Heritage 

  • The axial relationship to Armstrong House is appreciated, given that it creates an opportunity to recognize the heritage element of Somerset Square. The panel believes the development of Somerset Square should further consider its relationship to Armstrong House and its contribution to the City. 

Sustainability 

  • The Panel appreciates the sustainability measures. In addition to the proposed measures, the proponent should consider energy on-site, the use of contemporary heat pumps, treatment of the roof, low-impact development strategies and stormwater management. 

November 4, 2022

150 & 160 LAURIER AVENUE WEST | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | JADCO Group; rla/architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design 

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file. 

Summary 
  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the building is elegant and the breaking up the east façade with the vertical reveal as well the use of different variations in the curtain wall treatment are appreciated. 

  • The Panel believes the building's location at the corner of Laurier Avenue and Elgin Street is important to the Capital City context. Given that the development is part of an assembly of buildings next to the Lord Elgin Hotel, the Confederation Square and its valuable relationship to the church, the proponent should explore the use of stone in the podium. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel appreciates the idea of the tower’s vertical reveal as it speaks to the adjacent context, referencing the church spire. The effort to break up the tower mass with the reveal is appreciated, but it could be made more visible, and the top could be articulated further. 

  • The proponent should consider increasing the ground floor height. The renderings give the impression of a squat condition under the canopies and drive through that should be further studied. Additionally, the soffit treatment, lighting and their effect on the public realm should be considered, as they could exacerbate the squat condition. 

  • The Panel appreciates the height variation of the podium but believes the east side is too high and does not relate well to the church. The proponent should consider lowering the east portion and raising the west edges of the podium to strengthen the building's relationship with the church and Elgin Street. 

  • The reveal on the east façade that references the church's spire is appreciated, but the Panel recommends the proponent set back the balconies for a greater reveal expression. 

  • The proponent should consider creating a relationship between the proposal and the building on the south by stepping back the building at the seventh storey to create an open space that has a dialogue with the roof deck of the adjacent building. 

  • The Panel recognizes that although the building is zoning compliant, the building could be further sculpted to relate to the adjacent church and its neighbour buildings. 

Materiality 
  • Cathedral Hill on Sparks Street was cited as an example where the infill development, with its stone base, related successfully to the adjacent church. The Panel recommends further studies be undertaken to explore the use of stone in the podium given the neighbouring context and buildings. The proponent should also consider a lower-scale podium with stone to strengthen the relationship with the church and surrounding Capital context. The Lord Elgin Hotel was cited as an example of the use of stone for its addition that seamlessly integrates with its heritage component. 

  • The use of a curtain wall for both the tower and podium glazing is appreciated, but the Panel questions the necessity of the gold section in the podium as it appears applied and its usability for residential units raises privacy concerns. The Panel recommends simplifying the curtain wall treatment in the project by reducing or eliminating the change in glass colour and by making subtle changes to the mullion pattern for a more finessed and elegant texture. 

  • There was a suggestion to introduce copper on the soffits as a subtle nod to the church's materials; the copper reveal would relate to the spire on the church and speak to the Capital context. 

Site Plan and Landscaping 
  • The Panel believes there should be further separation distance between the building and the church; the proponent should consider creating a courtyard between them to recognize and celebrate the importance of Elgin Street. 

  • The Panel notes there is little landscape on the site and believes the landscape can be improved. The proponent should consider including trellises, climbing vines, implementing bike parking for couriers, introducing public art, reducing the temporary parking spaces, and utilizing the space above the ramp for an amenity area to enhance the public realm and help soften the landscape. 

  • There is an opportunity to increase the area between the parking spaces and the ramp on the ground floor, as the parking spaces appear tight. 

  • The Panel recommends relocating the servicing area to the rear of the building for the commercial units so there is no service access from Laurier Avenue. 

  • Given the context and the site's location within the block, the proponent should consider futureproofing a connection on the west side and making the space more pedestrian friendly. 

  • The implication of having a zero setback for residential buildings in an office context was questioned; it was noted that a 7.5-metre setback could be more appropriate regarding privacy, access to light and liveability. 

Sustainability 
  • The Panel appreciates the current sustainability measures but believes that a building envelope that could improve the energy efficiency of the building should be considered, given the long-term investment in rental units. 

  • More sustainability measures should be taken, such as consideration of transportation, bike parking, use of roofs for amenity spaces, and having white roofs or a green roof system.  

1546 SCOTT STREET | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Reid’s Heritage Properties; IBI Group; Tregebov Cogan Architecture 

Summary 
  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. The changes made, including removing the at-grade parking, creating a pedestrian route through the site, and refining the pavilion design are appreciated. The concept of a tower with a central volume with balconies pulling out from the building mass is appreciated. 

  • The Panel believes the building mass should continue to be studied within the evolving neighbourhood context to consider how future developments on adjacent parcels will integrate with the height and mass of this proposal to inform the public realm and streetscape design. 

  • The Panel would like to see a consolidated block plan, including a landscape plan to better understand the pedestrian connection's relationship to the adjacent property. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel reiterates its previous comment regarding simplifying the two-storey repeating pattern on the tower. The proponent should consider how the tower design, with a strong and heavy central element is complemented by the coloration and architectural treatment of the east and west tower facades, where the changes in plane are emphasized and the façade pattern treatment more subtly articulated. 

  • The window treatment on the east and west tower façades appears to recess, as opposed to previous iterations where it was flush with the adjacent material which was lighter and maintained an emphasis on the central element. There is an opportunity to strengthen and quiet down the east and west facades by simplifying the shifting glass and panel pattern. 

  • The Panel appreciates the changes to the mass of the podium as it successfully relates to the scale of the street and creates a simpler more unified base, but the Panel notes the architectural treatment of the podium appears to not be in sync with the rest of the building. The proponent should look at cues from the central tower volume where architectural treatment is in unison with the other building elements. The vertical columns of the podium were specifically noted not being in unison. 

  • The square window treatment was also noted to not be in harmony with the language of the tower. Tying the vertical stone of the tower through the podium would help to harmonize the two. 

  • The Panel notes the podium has elements echoing the buildings at Tunney's Pasture, mainly the arcade treatment at the base, which is reminiscent of the 70s, but the Panel questions its success and recommends the proponent reconsiders it. 

Public Realm 
  • The Panel appreciates the proposed walkway and the consideration given to the future development on the adjacent property; however, the walkway is tucked behind the stairs making it difficult for pedestrians to navigate and know where to cross, which could result in pedestrians using the driveway to connect through the block. The Panel recommends moving the crossing further north for better visibility. 

  • The site plan indicates that the access to the garbage and loading area is through the pedestrian crossing; the proponent should consider a different treatment for the crossing and have it lit to ensure the walkway is safe for pedestrians. 

  • The Panel questions the location of the exterior stairs as there are some safety concerns; the proponent should consider its location and treatment through a CPTED lens and relocate the transformer. 

  • The Panel recommends the proponent consider a high-quality pedestrian paving treatment across the front of the property, through both the plaza and driveway to unify and strengthen the public realm. 

Sustainability 
  • The proponent should consider increasing sustainability on site by adding geothermal energy, terraces on the west side, green roofs, or white roofs, minimizing dark materials and increasing greenery to improve residents' quality of life. 

October 6, 2022

6310 HAZELDEAN ROAD | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | Fotenn Planning + Design  

Summary 
  • The Panel believes that the site will set a precedent in the area where a strong architectural expression and public realm vision is needed to embed the site into the greater landscape and neighbourhood context. 

  • The Panel supports, in principle, more density on the site; however, there are more opportunities to enhance the public realm and landscaping and to build a sense of community while considering how the proposal will set a standard for the future. 

  • At this stage of the development process, the Panel expects to see a proposal where the architecture has been resolved, is viable, will be built and become part of the neighbourhood. A more detailed proposal would enable the Panel to provide more wholesome comments and input.  

  • The Panel expressed disappointment with the current level of resolution of the architecture. 

Site Layout 
  • The Panel recommends the City not grant the changes to the setbacks as the site provides enough space to accommodate the buildings while maintaining the setbacks requirements. 

  • The Panel recommends increasing the density on Hazeldean Road and reorienting Building B to parallel the street to create an urbanized corridor. Should the building be parallel to the street, the Panel recommends connecting Buildings A and B with glazed volume.  Additionally, the proponent should consider elongating the building to eliminate the north-south wing since the inside corner units of an L-shaped building have with limited access to light. 

  • The proponent should consider relocating the drop-off area underground on the north side of Building C to provide access to all three buildings. This would open up the layby space and allow for more greenery and reconfiguration of the parking layout. 

  • The Panel questioned the appropriateness and amount of commercial space on the ground floor, given retail may not be viable. The space could be used for residential amenities. 

  • The Panel believes the site's configuration is dominated by parking. The proponent should develop a strong pedestrian realm proposal that accommodates bicycle parking and has a high-quality landscape with outdoor amenities and a residential character. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel has concerns with the scale and massing on the site as the buildings do not reflect the neighbourhood's character and only relate to each other. The Panel recommends the proponent study the area and its architecture to establish a language that complements the neighbourhood. 

  • The Panel notes the ground floors configurations are repeated throughout the site, and the suite plans might do not reflect the siting or architecture of the individual buildings. The proponent should consider providing a high-quality amenity at grade, as the amount of space allocated for each suite is questionable. 

  • The proponent should consider more variety on the facades and larger glazed openings and the introduction of large family units to break up the sameness of the buildings.  The proponent should also consider adding more glazing with masonry at key corners to provide amination at the ground floor level. 

  • The Panel believes Building C should have more articulation to break up the long façade. 

  • The proponent should consider stepping and terracing the building toward the neighbourhood to provide a more significant transition and greenery at the rear. 

Public Realm and Landscaping 
  • The Panel has concerns with the parking at the rear, given the possibility of headlights spilling into neighbours' yards. The parking does not allow for an outdoor amenity area due to the limited open space. The proponent should consider eliminating parking at the rear or designing the open spaces first, before laying out the parking. 

  • There is an opportunity to add a bosque of trees and have a wrap-around landscape adjacent to the townhouses to create a strong landscape design and to strengthen the existing buffer. 

  • The proponent should focus on site sustainability by implementing stormwater management and providing opportunities within the landscape to integrate utilities. 

403 RICHMOND ROAD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Starwood Mastercraft; rla/architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; Gino J. Aiello landscape architect 

Summary 
  • The Panel expressed support for the development, material choice, public space, and retail on Richmond Road. The project will be precedent-setting for future infill developments. 

  • The Panel strongly recommends that the paving on Richmond Road be integrated with the street treatment, incorporating the red brick paving treatment to knit the building better within the neighbourhood context and refine and improve the usability of the amenity space. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel appreciates the changes to the façade; however, some details still need to be finalized. The proponent should refine the material details and textures to enhance and elevate the project and ensure the mullions and balconies do not read too heavy or dark. 

  • Integrating the red brick on parts of the podium, including the townhouses on Roosevelt Avenue, is recommended to better integrate the building within the context.  

  • It was suggested the proponent set back the rooftop railing and review the penthouse window treatment to be in harmony with the lower expression. 

  • The Panel recommends the columns of the porte-cochère have a similar cladding to the townhouses and reintroduce the canopy on Richmond Road. 

  • The band of vertical windows facing Richmond Road is too narrow and should be further refined. 

Amenity Area and Landscaping 
  • The Panel appreciates the green buffer on the north side but questions whether the space is too open, as vehicle headlights will intrude onto the neighbouring property. The proponent should consider climbing vines to enhance the green space.  

  • The terrace at grade is a great urban gesture, but the change of pavers creates a division between the public and private realms. The Panel recommends using higher quality pavers for the entire area with a similar coloration in order for the private realm to blend seamlessly with the public realm, to create a unified gathering space. 

  • There is an opportunity to replace the turn-around asphalted area north of the site with pavers to create an amenity area for residents. 

  • Consider adding planters on the terraces to enhance the project. 

  • The Panel encourages the implementation of sustainable measurements related to rain and stormwater. 

951 GLADSTONE AVENUE & 145 LORETTA AVENUE NORTH | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | CLV Group; PBC Group; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design 

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file. 

Summary 
  • The Panel appreciates and supports the changes made to the project, including the change in scale and height reduction. The Panel commented on three aspects of the design: architectural expression, materiality, and public realm. 

  • The Panel appreciates the changes to the public realm, including removing the bridge and integrating the MUP. The concept of an urban forest is also supported, but the Panel believes the proponent should continue to explore the opportunity to program the public spaces. 

  • There are concerns with the landscape buffer that separates the retail from the street, which creates a disconnect between the sidewalk and the building edge due to the sloped condition. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel remains concerned with the sameness of the towers, and there is an opportunity to think differently about the southernmost tower; the proponent should consider ways to incorporate some materiality, such as brick, into the tower design. 

  • The mechanical penthouse, on the tallest tower, needs further refinement in terms of how it meets the sky, as the architectural language does not fit with the context. 

  • The three towers should not exceed a floor plate size of 750 square metres as per the Design Guidelines for High-rise Buildings. 

  • The underpass provides a good space to introduce art into the buildings. 

  • The Panel recommends that the proponent works with the EBA to rehabilitate the heritage building and preserve its artistic qualities. 

Materiality 
  • The Panel is concerned with the use of brick as the dominant material on the podium and believes the podium expression on Gladstone Avenue could be represented more authentically. The proponent should consider setting back the upper two floors, having one less floor of brick on the podium and bringing the brick to the ground. 

  • The proponent should continue to study material choices compatible with the heritage building and carrying the brick expression up on Tower 1 to break the sameness of the three towers. 

  • The material palette needs to be reconsidered as the towers do not speak to the podium; the nod to the industrial heritage is appreciated, but it reads as heavy, and the integration of brick and white at the base of Tower 2 is jarring. 

  • The proponent should consider exploring different treatments and materials for the third tower and to reconsider the use of red frame panel on Tower 1 as it feels heavy. 

Public Realm and Landscape 
  • It is unclear if the entrance to the EBA plaza and connection to the transit station is accessible; the proponent should consider stepping the landscape to create an event space within the POPS for the artist community and recognize the EBA as an artist centre. The proponent should work with the EBA to have an entrance that celebrates the artists’ space. 

  • Further consideration should be given to the sidewalk condition on Gladstone, as the double sidewalk is not conducive to a successful retail experience. 

  • The Panel appreciates the idea of an urban grove, but the treatment feels suburban. The proponent should consider turning the area into a woonerf with red brick pavers and removing the four parallel parking spaces to reduce traffic movement, provide more greenery and create a more seamless public realm. 

  • Further studies are required for the garbage and loading space and turnaround area. The area could be stepped down to create a relationship between the MUP and the transit station. The garbage and loading area could be concealed within the building to allow for more open space, and the turnaround area could look more like a plaza to animate the ground plane. 

393 MCARTHUR AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Miles Yang; CSV Architects; NOVATECH 

Summary 
  • The Panel appreciates the level of thought put into the development proposal; the building is an appropriate scale for the neighbourhood context.   

  • The proponent should focus on the architectural details as the building will set an important precedent for future mid-rise developments in this part of the City. 

  • The integration of the sidewalk is appreciated, but the proponent should continue to develop the public realm and lower the ground floor to match the existing sidewalk grade to normalize the streetscape on McArthur Avenue. 

Architectural Expression 
  • The Panel expressed concerns with the shape of the building. A C-shaped building does not consider the future development of the adjacent lot and could result in the facing units not being liveable. 

  • The project could benefit from providing an 18-metre double-loaded bar building design that would knit with the streetscape on McArthur and provide shallow liveable units, allowing for the west setback to be 5.5 metres and more glazing. 

  • The proponent should consider introducing a step back at the first or second storey on the west elevation and adding balconies. The balcony treatment, especially at the corner, would benefit from a glass or metal guard system to soften the façade. 

  • The Panel appreciates the articulation of the elevations and the introduction of colour, but the colour palette should be simplified as the colours on the side facades appear dull. The proponent should consider a simple masonry block treatment, a stronger contrast in colours and the removal of the grey element around the windows to simplify openings, with the use of the yellow tone on the upper floors. 

  • There was a suggestion to locate the commercial uses on one side of the building and to relocate the stairs and elevator to the opposite side, eliminating the need for a ramp on McArthur. 

Site Layout and Landscape 
  • The Panel has concerns with the at-grade units and the height of the privacy wall along the sidewalk, given that the units do not seem consistent with the rhythm of Belisle Street and do not represent a streetscape condition that could be replicated further down the street. 

  • The Panel notes the residents' lack of outdoor amenity space and recommends removing the three parking spaces to provide an outdoor amenity area and a better buffer for the adjacent property. 

  • The proponent should consider reorienting the underground parking entrance within the building. 

  • The proponent should eliminate the ramp on McArthur to strengthen and simplify the connection between the ground floor uses of the building and adjacent the public realm. 

  • There was a suggestion to integrate the bus stop within the public realm and ensure it is accessible to everyone. 

Sustainability 
  • Sustainability measures should be considered beyond the built form and ensure the livability of trees within the site. 

1940 CARLING AVENUE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Woodman Architect & Associates Ltd.; Holzman Consultants Inc.; James B. Lennox & Associates Inc. 

Summary 
  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the changes made, as the project is believed to be an important precedent for future developments on Carling Avenue. 

  • The Panel noted the importance of the building to knit within the neighbourhood context and provided the applicant with suggestions on achieving it. 

  • The Panel notes the site's potential to enhance the landscape, but there are concerns with the ground floor layout, the building's proximity to the neighbouring property, the garage and open space configuration, and the use of three materials. 

Architecture 
  • The Panel is concerned with the replicability of the building and its proximity to the neighbouring property. The proponent should consider future proofing the units to ensure their success. 

  • The site's rigidity and lack of symmetry are concerning. The applicant should reconsider the existing 2-2-3 building proportions and instead have a base, middle and top relationship of 2, 4, 1; the parapet should be raised at the penthouse level to create a simplified façade. 

  • The Panel has concerns with the materials proposed and questions the need for three different materials given the lack of step back. The proponent should consider an all-brick building with an engineered stone base and a simpler expression. 

  • The Panel notes that the panelized expression has a commercial feel and that the architecture lacks residential elements. The proponent should consider introducing a back-painted spandrel system, picket railings, lintels, headers above window openings, and a front canopy that give the building a more residential expression. 

  • There is an opportunity for the terraces to provide screening elements for privacy on lower floors. 

  • The Panel laments the removal of Juliette balconies, given that providing residents with balconies improves the liveability of units. 

  • The emergency exits lead to the lobby and not directly to the exterior; the proponent should ensure that there are no building code issues. 

Landscape 
  • The Panel believes there is an opportunity to enhance the landscape with high-quality materials that would allow for the front treatment and the streetscape to be integrated and create an area of respite on Carling Avenue. 

  • There is an opportunity to have screening elements on the terrace to create privacy and provide space for tenants. 

  • The proponent should work more on the landscape, as the Panel note that hedges have been removed but not replaced. There is an opportunity to improve the public realm on Carling by creating a residential landscape treatment that relates to the neighbourhood context.  The proponent should also consider adding more greenery at the rear. 

Site Plan 
  • The Panel is concerned with the front façade's garage entry, the asphalt treatment, and the open space above the ramp, as the space has a dark and gloomy feeling and appears tight due to the columns. The Panel recommends eliminating the three parking spaces and moving the garage door to the front façade. 

  • The building's setback and the proximity of the units to the property line are concerning, given that it might not be possible for natural light to come through, affecting the liveability of the units. 

  • The proponent should consider re-examining the landscape around the edges as the retaining wall will obstruct the movement of bicycles onto the building. 

  • The ground floor units are problematic, especially those facing the side lot line. 

  • The proponent should reconsider the underground parking layout. 

Sustainability 
  • The Panel appreciates the sustainability statement but encourages the proponent to explore sustainable opportunities further, such as using the roof for water management, the livability of trees and the quality of street furniture to enhance the development. 

September 9th, 2022

1081 CARLING AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Taggart Realty Management; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; CSW

 

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the design; given the new context of Carling Avenue the proposal will be positive addition to the area. The Panel is concerned however with the building's transition to the well-established neighbourhood to the north.
  • The Panel does not believe the site can accommodate two towers, given that the towers do not meet the separation requirements and impact the public space's usability, quality, and distribution. A one-tower with a podium would be more appropriate.

Massing and Scale

  • The Panel believes this should be a one tower site integrated with a four to nine-storey podium, providing for an appropriate transition to the neighbourhood. The tower on the west side is too large, and more space is required to provide a proper tower transition. The proponent should consider providing generous tower setbacks with a strong podium.
  • The Panel appreciates the podium reduction and the provision of a 20-metre setback on the north. However, The Panel questions the 20-metre tower separation and believes it should be a minimum of 23 metres to allow the base to have a greater separation distance.
  • The current tower and podium separation distance create a canyon-like quality that could be improved by moving the easternmost tower forward.
  • Given the length of the floor plates, the proponent should consider reducing the floor plate to 750 square metres or lowering the west tower's height to a mid-rise building.
  • The Panel questions the market viability of the studio units, given that 11% of studio units for a project is quite high. The proponent should ensure there is a demand for the number of proposed studio units.
  • It was suggested the proponent explore orienting the western building parallel to Carling Avenue.

Architectural Expression and Materiality

  • The Panel believes the architecture could be simplified as the colour blocking is not successful in creating a reveal between the podium and the tower. The proponent should consider bringing the white elements of the tower down to eliminate the false reveal. Additionally, the brick on the podium has an applique quality; the proponent is encouraged to introduce more brick, to ground the podium and ensure the podium fits with the Parkdale Avenue context.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent align the mechanical penthouse parallel to the face of the building to improve its integration.
  • It was noted that it would be difficult to achieve the effect of the podium soffits as rendered.  The Panel suggests the proponent study the soffits further.

Public realm

  • The Panel appreciates the POPS, but the park might not get much natural light given the building's proportions.
  • The Panel believes having grade-related units facing the park would be favourable as they provide an opportunity to provide family housing and to animate the park.

 

2006, 2020 & 2026 SCOTT STREET and 314 & 318 ATHLONE AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | Colonnade BridgePort; Morley Hoppener; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; Projet Paysage

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation and is in support of the two-tower approach conditional upon the following recommendations. The introduction of terracing facing the park is appreciated, and the Panel commends the proponent for the site's contribution to the immediate surroundings and neighbourhood. However, further studies on the building's transition to the low-rise neighbourhood are needed as the project moves to the Site Plan stage.
  • The Panel notes the proposal is in the early stages of the evolution of the architectural expression; however, the Panel has some concerns regarding the bridge's relationship to the street.

Context

  • The Panel notes that it would have been beneficial to have contextual elevations of the building on Scott Street in relation to the other proposals on adjacent sites, to understand the height in context and streetwall relationships. The proponent should consider a variation in height of the two towers on Scott Street and conduct further analysis on the evolution of the street, as the Panel considers the project as a gateway to the park.
  • The Panel expects future submissions would show the building's transition from the neighbourhood to the south, including a 45-degree angular plane analysis to understand the transition in that area.

Massing

  • The Panel supports the idea of an amenity bridge to break up the massing, but the Panel questions whether the bridge is too high and overscaled, giving the building a civic appearance more appropriate for the downtown area. The bridge could be scaled down and incorporated with the podium, instead of above it, and brought closer to the ground.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent study the bridge typology and views at street level, as the bridge will mostly be visible from long views towards the site. The bridge may not be as apparent from closer in views such as those on the street in close vicinity. Given the visibility of this feature, the panel questions the typology.
  • The Panel believes the project would benefit from being a mixed-use development given that the site is across from a future LRT station. Providing retail uses is essential. Community uses would also complement and animate the public park.
  • The Panel believes the towers should vary in height. The concern is that having both buildings at the same height when seen from different views, would create an overlap condition which could appear as a lager 'slab' building and they would read as a single slab building. The Panel recommends having a minimum distance of 12 metres or approximately four storeys to differential between the two towers and create a distinction on the skyline.
  • The proponent should consider the building's transition, and façade treatment on Athlone as that side is predominately low-rise residences.

 

Architectural expression

  • The Panel recommends the proponent use a fine-grain treatment for the podium to give it a residential feel and study the elevations as the architectural expression is finalized.
  • The Panel appreciates the building's serrated expression on Tower 1 facing the park, which provides an opportunity for the terracing units to integrate greenery and create a vegetated edge condition to the building. The Panel notes that Tower 2 also has some greenery, which provides continuity.
  • The Panel recognizes the architectural expression has not been developed; however, it was noted that the precedent images included an extensive use of glass which raises a question of its compatibility with the neighbourhood. It was suggested that a more textured building would be appropriate.

Public realm

  • The Panel appreciates the parti diagram and the clear-cut access to Lion's park as it is a great example of the site's porosity and when the transit station is functional the cut-through access will create a connection to the neighbourhood.

 

665 ALBERT STREET | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment, and Site Plan Control Application | Dream LeBreton; Perkins & Will; KPMB; PFS Studio; Two Row Architect

 

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the changes that have strengthened the project, including changes to the towers, ground floor uses, the rhythm of storefronts, and the relationship to the escarpment. The Panel also appreciates the description of the coloration of the towers referencing maple trees in the fall.
  • The Panel strongly supports the overall architectural and public realm design that creates a strong relationship with Albert Street, in contrast with a more traditional streetwall proposal.
  • The Panel has some concerns with the childcare drop-off area and the podium treatment.

Site Plan

  • The Panel appreciates the massing and level changes leading to the LRT station and the escarpment that integrate the site with the neighbourhood, but the Panel believes the proponent should explore a stronger through lobby condition to invite people arriving from the station into the site.
  • The Panel appreciates the permeability of the canal edge connecting to the Pimisi Station and considers the permeability of the west podium connecting the lobby to Pimisi Station important.
  • The Panel has concerns with the current layout of the childcare drop-off area and believes the drop-off area should be clearly protected and the turnaround configuration further explored.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the changes to the corner expression of the towers as they add lightness and emphasize the verticality.
  • If the budget permits, the proponent should consider exploring natural stone for the podium as it would strengthen the relationship with the escarpment.
  • The Panel notes the divider panels on the podium levels, rendered with the same coloration as the balustrades, work against the horizontality of the architectural expression.
  • The proponent should consider minimizing the slab caps to make the building appear more sleek.
  • The Panel appreciates the podium balustrade treatment, but expressed a concern that the podiums appear dark.  This may be a rendering issue, but the Panel recommends the proponent continue to study the podium colour and underside of all projections.

Public Realm

  • The Panel appreciates the treatment of the ground floor and the plaza. The strong landscape and planting treatment provide areas of comfort and opportunities for a range of programming.

 

1209 ST. LAURENT BOULEVARD AND 1200 LEMIEUX STREET | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | 1209 St. Laurent Limited Partnership; Canderel; Fengate Asset Management; rla / architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design

 

Summary

  • The Panel recognizes the importance of the site and its potential to be a precedent-setting and is cognizant of the challenges, including access, due to the site being on a transportation island.
  • The Panel appreciates the improvements made to the project, including the expansion of the pedestrian network and completion of the sidewalks.
  • The Panel believes the elegant design will transform the corner, as this area has high pedestrian movement given its proximity to St. Laurent Shopping Mall.
  • The Panel supports the site's overall composition and the towers' disposition. However, the Panel questions whether the podium should wrap around the highway portion and believes improvements could be made to allow more sunlight to enter the courtyard and open up the sky views.

Massing and Articulation

  • Given the precedent-setting nature of the project, the Panel believes the façade facing St; Laurent Boulevard should be studied further as the towers are very similar in expression. The Panel also believes the podium is one floor too tall.
  • The Panel is concerned that the height of the podium facing south casts shadows onto the courtyard. Further analysis of the space is needed and the proponent should consider reducing the podium height to provide more natural light into the courtyard.
  • Consideration should be given to the views of the towers from the highway. The Panel recommends providing more separation distance between the towers to increase the step back on St. Laurent to improve the public realm. The proponent should also consider moving the east tower further east, to take advantage of the curved roadway.
  • The proponent should consider a different tower-podium expression on St. Laurent Boulevard to strengthen its relationship with the surrounding context; for example, the podium could have a similar expression to the building across from Lemieux Street.
  • The Panel believes the proponent should study how the podium's base meets the ground on St. Laurent Boulevard, as it has an unnatural appearance. There was a suggestion to introduce exposed columns, ground floor programming and amenities at the base of the tower to address the site's dynamism and to improve the tower's relationship to with the street.
  • The proponent should consider tapering down the eastmost tower to differentiate the massing and to have the tallest tower on St. Laurent.
  • The project floor plates should be no more than 750 square metres.
  • The proponent should consider introducing at-grade units.

Site's Circulation

  • The Panel recommends the proponent emphasize the pedestrian strategy and minimize vehicular movement by relocating the drop-off area below grade, tucking the ramp under Tower B and providing additional amenity areas for residents, making the courtyard more pedestrian friendly.
  • The Panel appreciates the lobby at the upper level and the step down to St. Laurent Boulevard and notes there is an opportunity to create a strong sense of arrival at the intersection. The proponent should consider integrating Labelle Street and creating a feature at the crosswalk on St. Laurent Boulevard.

Materiality

  • The deep cuts in the fabric of the white podium are appreciated, but the Panel is concerned that some of the details might be lost during the construction stage, resulting in the façade appearing less dynamic. The proponent should consider using warm materials as they might be more forgiving. The Panel considers that a combination of warm tones in the podium with a lighter colour in the tower might be more appropriate as surrounding buildings are red and orange brick.
  • The Panel appreciates the light precast material but cautions that a dark precast panel might not be appropriate in a climate with long grey winters.

 

1802 - 1804 ST. LAURENT BOULEVARD | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | Manor Park Capital; Fotenn Planning + Design

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. The future context images shown demonstrate that the site offers many opportunities to become precedent-setting and has enough space to accommodate two towers.
  • The Panel agrees the site is a two-tower site; however, there are some concerns with the building's orientation to the street, transition to the west and the podium's height. The Panel believes the landscape and open space should be further explored.

Context

  • The Panel appreciates the aerial images showing the massing and future context but believes the proponent should consider the context of the area further, to address the development's relationship to the street.
  • The Panel is concerned with the transition of the west tower to the adjacent site; the site provides enough space to create setbacks and transition to the residential neighbourhood. The proponent should consider re-orienting the street fronting tower and podium to be parallel to the street, reducing the building and podium heights to improve the site's relationship to its surroundings.

Massing and Architectural Expression

  • The Panel believes the project could have a more urban feel. The proponent should focus first on the tower elements (base, middle and top) and study how the tower meets the sky and its relationship to the street.
  • The Panel notes the perspective drawings illustrate that the towers appear heavier than necessary, the west tower appears too tall, and the podium too large. Additionally, the east tower's podium is too tall, and its relationship to the street is unresolved. The proponent should consider reducing the west tower's height by four or five storeys and scaling down the podium to provide a better transition west of the site. Further consideration should be given to the transition elements of the east tower's podium.
  • The southeast isometric demonstrates that the massing appears bulky; the Panel recommends the towers have a floor plate of no more than 750 square metres.
  • The Panel recognizes that the architectural details are in their infancy; however, the proponent should consider the window proportion during the Site Plan Control stage.
  • There is a concern with the punched windows with balconies. The proponent should consider providing amenity areas within the units and ensure each unit has access to daylight.

Landscaping and Public Realm

  • The Panel recognizes the merit of providing an outdoor amenity area, but the proponent could further explore providing north access to the site from St. Laurent Boulevard.
  • The Panel notes the challenges on the site, due to an existing easement, but believes that the expansive paved entrance is problematic, as it creates a large, undefined asphalt area. The proponent should create a contained entrance to the site with a framed pathway screened from the adjacent easement. The Panel recommends shifting the vehicular site access to the southern property line and tucking the parking garage entrance into the building to allow for an east-west connection to the east tower and allow for a greater open space on the north that could extend to the street, inviting people into the site.
  • The Panel appreciates the pathways adjacent to the lot lines as they can connect to future developments.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent continue to study the pedestrian experience, how the development connects to the neighbourhood and how the pathways and the POPS could provide a place for the community and contribute to the public realm of the neighbourhood.

July 8, 2022

3277 ST. JOSEPH BOULEVARD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Hillside Vista Inc.; DBA Hillside Commons; Landric Homes; Phoenix Homes Rossmann Architecture 

 

Summary 

  • The Panel appreciates the project's evolution given the challenges due to the grade change and the easement, but the Panel notes that some refinements are needed to strengthen the base, middle, and top expressions. 
  • The Panel has some concerns with the projecting roof top soffits as they create dark shadow lines on the top and the building's entrance at the corner, and further studies are needed to create a rich landscape. 

Architectural Expression 

  • The Panel appreciates the early drawing delineating the base treatment, and the building's typology is appropriate, but the building's base, middle, and top portions are not well defined. The Panel recommends the portion above the three-storey podium be one storey instead of two to create a simple consistent datum line. 
  • For the five-storey podium, the proponent should consider dropping the base to two storeys and incorporating a balcony break, or introduce a reveal expression, between the five-storey base and the higher element. 
  • The Panel has concerns with the corner treatment and believes it should be simplified; furthermore, the vertical white elements and the black material erode the base and middle expression. The proponent should consider wrapping the podium element around the corner for a simplified façade expression. 
  • The entrance at the corner has an awkward feel, and the number of steps makes the entrance inaccessible. The proponent should consider a negative corner for a more elegant solution and have a common entrance between the two buildings off St. Joseph Boulevard. 
  • The proponent should revise the balconies and recess them further as projecting balconies detract from the street wall. 
  • There was a suggestion to include gates for the at-grade balconies to encourage eyes on the street. 

Materiality 

  • The Panel notes Building's B front façade has a "back of house" feel. The proponent should consider replicating the eastern façade on Building B to ground the building to the street and continue the podium on the western façade instead of introducing the dark element. 
  • The Panel questions whether the two-coloured material treatment on the taller portions of the building is appropriate, as a change of materials on the same plane is not successful and gives the impression of being superficial. The proponent should consider introducing a stone podium with the lower portion of the building rendered in a dark material and the upper portion in a lighter material  
  • The inset and projected balconies dark colour should be reconsidered as there is an opportunity to create a play of shadow and light if they are a light colour. 
  • The proponent should consider improving the blank walls at the lower level by introducing greenery such as Boston Ivy or creating a mural, or extending the cladding materials down to cover the blank walls. 

Landscaping 

  • The Panel believes the landscape is underdeveloped, especially along St. Joseph Boulevard.  The Panel would like to see more articulation of the landscape.  The use of a chain-linked fence is discouraged. 
  • Should the corner element remain, the Panel recommends creating a more dramatic landscape; for instance, the proponent should consider introducing armour stone terraces for a dramatic look and to provide a forecourt to create the feeling of a plaza at the intersection. 
  • The proponent should also reconsider the planting elements on St. Joseph Boulevard as the current number of trees is insufficient; the Panel recommends introducing a row of street trees facing the building. 

 

360 BOBOLINK RIDGE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Seymour Pacific Developments (Ltd.); J. L. Richards 

 

Summary 

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. The efforts to work with City staff to improve the site plan, including the addition of commercial uses and the parkland dedication and moving a portion of the parking underground, are appreciated. 
  • The Panel believes the proponent should consider how the site plan will evolve, including its potential for intensification. More studies should be considered from a public realm perspective, including pedestrian circulation and connectivity, parking configuration and open spaces. 
  • The Panel would like to see the architectural expression simplified, there are some concerns with the soffit projections and the material choice, and the use of brick traditional to Ottawa should be considered, as well as improving the base height. 
  • The Panel would like to see a more extensive landscape design. 

Site Plan 

  • The Panel believes there are opportunities to strengthen the entrance from Bobolink Ridge by relocating the parking to create a freestanding retail pavilion that disengages from the L-shape building and frames the retail creating an entranceway into the development, the proponent should also consider locating the commercial uses of Building D with other commercial spaces to anchor the corner. 
  • The midblock connection is appreciated, but the Panel believes a clear pedestrian circulation diagram is needed; currently, the sidewalks are meandering and on Building D the sidewalk jogs down and cuts through the parking area. The proponent should consider widening the main axes north-south and east-west to focus on the east side commercial building at the corner, to connect the commercial space and park to create a central point of activity. 
  • The commercial uses would be more successful if they were closer to the sidewalk; the proponent should consider creating a strong commercial presence and consolidating all the commercial uses. 
  • Although it is understood that the site plan configuration is set, bringing the buildings closer together was suggested to create a courtyard typology to provide more green spaces in the middle and for the remaining site to be used for parking that would facilitate the site’s intensification in the future. 
  • There is a concern with the lack of drop-off areas. A layby lane should be integrated within the parking layout since the site will need to accommodate many seniors and support deliveries. 

Architectural Expression and Materiality 

  • The simplicity of the building is appreciated, but components typical of single-family residential buildings should not be used and replicated on mid-rise buildings. The proponent should reconsider the white frame on darker panel expression as it creates a striped appearance and instead embrace the six-storey typology and use architectural components that are appropriate for a six-storey building. 
  • The proponent should consider raising the ground floor and expanding the brick on the ground floor to give more definition to the base of the building. 
  • The crenellated roof with the projected soffits makes the project feel top-heavy, and the Hardie Panels give the project a sense of sameness. The proponent should consider simplifying the soffit treatment. 
  • The Panel notes that buildings A and D lobby entrances do not have a through lobby connections, given that there is an interrupted diagonal axis. Entrances with a through lobby would be more appropriate. 

Public Realm and Landscaping 

  • The Panel appreciates the community garden and the site plan showing the provision of the parkland is a step in the right direction.  The proponent should review the entrance to the underground parking appears as is appears to be inaccessible and the bike paths are not conducive to cycling. The Panel recommends the proponent develop a clear cycling network and consider safety as children will use the outdoor amenity spaces. 
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent provide a dedicated interior amenity space as the lobbies are insufficient to provide that important function. 

 

1509 MERIVALE ROAD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Katasa Groupe + Développement; rla/architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; GJA inc. 

 

Summary 

  • The Panel believes the building is moving in the right direction, but more emphasis is needed on the two-storey datum. There is general panel support for a taller building in the next phase of development. 
  • The Panel believes more texture and colour blocking is needed as some portions of the building appear co-planar. 
  • The Panel expressed concerns with the ramp treatment off Kerry Crescent and would like to see a greater connection between the development and the neighbourhood. The Panel notes the condition facing Merivale Road requires more thought and development and the proponent should consider futureproofing the site for commercial uses. 

Context 

  • The two-storey townhouse expression is appreciated, but the Panel believes there is an opportunity to separate the townhouse expression from the taller building by pulling the town houses forward. This will provide balconies for the floor above 
  • There is an opportunity to adopt a similar approach on Merivale Road with life-work units at street level.  
  • The proponent should explore the opportunity to provide more greening on Kerry Crescent during phase two of the development to complement and enhance the relationship with the neighbourhood. 
  • A Panel member preferred Option B; however, more studies are required, including anticipating the future context of the area as a tower in this location could have an alienating feeling. 

Architectural Expression 

  • For the preferred option, the Panel notes the colour blocking is more successful at the two-storey level and it should be extended around the building at that datum; however, colour blocking is more effective if there is a building step back. 
  • The proponent should consider improving the facades by adding more relief and texture in the form of soffits, mullions and sills around the windows to introduce some articulation in the building and to revisit how the building meets the ground as it appears heavy. 
  • The Panel considers the façade on Merivale Road important, and its architectural treatment should be elevated as it appears flat. The two-storey delineation of materials would help mitigate that. 
  • There was a suggestion to extend or inset the slab edge as it appears co-planar and to group the windows in a pattern of 2, 2, 2 or 2, 2, 1, 1 for the façade facing Kerry Crescent to make the building appear lighter. 
  • The proponent should consider a balcony treatment that would resonate with the vocabulary of the building. 
  • It was indicated that Option B had a clearer architectural expression and a greater degree of stepping down into the residential neighbourhood, which is favourable. 

Amenity Area 

  • The Panel questions the amount of interior amenity area provided and recommends it to be located at the end of the bar building to minimize disruption on adjacent units with kids playing and other outdoor activities. 
  • The Panel cautions the proponent to ensure the location of exterior amenity spaces for kids to play in is not adjacent to the at-grade units. 
  • The Panel encourages the proponent to include commercial uses at grade to be integrated within the building. 
  • Should Option B be considered moving forward, the proponent should integrate parking access close to the street rather than through the courtyard, to provide more landscaping and amenity uses for the community. 
  • There was a suggestion to tuck the ramp into the building as an enclosed ramp freeing up some space that could be given to the community. 

 

70 RICHMOND ROAD & 376 ISLAND PARK DRIVE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Devtrin (Island Park) Inc.; Trinity Development Group; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; GJA inc. 

 

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file. 

Summary 

  • The Panel appreciates the evolution of the project and the changes made, including the use of quiet materials, the transition of the building to the adjacent neighbourhood and addition of more stone at the base. 
  • The Panel would like to see more greening of the site and more human scale elements on the plan, as well as more integration of the landscape treatment with the residential neighbourhood. There is an opportunity to provide additional visual separation from the neighbourhood by providing more distance from the balconies’ edges with the addition of planters. 

Architectural Expression and Materiality 

  • The Panel appreciates the overall elegance of the building however there are strong concerns regarding the glass element at the centre of the building as it creates a light beacon at night and looms over the heritage building. The Panel believes the vertical element could be quietened down by continuing the masonry across at each floor level to emphasize the heritage building. 
  • The small back-painted panels immediately above the heritage building on the north elevation appear out of place on the façade and the applicant should consider they be eliminated. 
  • The Panel notes the brise-soleil at the upper amenity roof and the dark soffit at the roofline of the ninth floor makes the building feel top heavy. The proponent should consider eliminating the brise-soleil and trimming the soffit. 
  • The proponent should consider using aluminum for some of the spandrel panels and back painted glass to reduce reflectivity and make the building more bird-friendly. 

Public Realm and Landscaping 

  • The Panel notes that adding more vegetation and street trees would help mitigate the transition to the neighbourhood, especially along the street wall where there is not enough vegetation. 
  • The proponent should consider embedding planting or buffers at the edges on balconies and terracing on the upper levels especially for balconies that face the single-family residences and adding a greater buffer and greenery into townhouses E, F, and G as well as at the northeast corner of Island Park Drive. 
  • The Panel notes the concrete sidewalks shown on the site plan are not detailed enough, more planter elements closer to the sidewalk are needed, and the sidewalk treatment should match with the Wellington Street paving treatment. Additionally, the public realm could be improved by increasing the number of trees planted on Island Park Drive and adding a continuous row of trees to the adjacent shared path that abuts the neighbouring houses. 

Heritage Building 

  • The Panel considers the heritage building the focus of the site and therefore questions whether the glazed vertical element floating above the heritage building would be more successful if the 8-storey masonry expression wrapped around it, creating an elegant backdrop to the heritage building. 
  • Overall, the Panel appreciates the direction taken to separate the heritage building from the mid-rise building. 

 

50 THE DRIVEWAY | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Canadian Nurses Association; Hobin Architecture; main+main; CSW 

 

Summary 

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for their presentation and recognized the fine design and the challenges of integrating heritage elements into the design, including the lantern. 
  • The Panel supports the project and appreciates the team's efforts to retain and reinstate parts of the building. 
  • The Panel appreciates the history behind the heritage element. Some Panel members expressed their preference for maintaining the heritage element at grade. There is strong support for the curvilinear expression, and the Panel provided different suggestions on how to integrate the lantern element and the treatment of the vertical element. The Panel also provided comments regarding the treatment of the stairs and their integration into the building. 

Integration of Heritage Elements 

  • The Panel appreciates the preservation of the front steps, but they are no longer associated with the building entrance and do not lead to any common areas of the building. The proponent could consider incorporating a moat element surrounding the stairs and introducing water to improve the stairs’ treatment and give them a new feel. 
  • The Panel questions the integration of the lantern with the building as it currently has a gothic feeling. The proponent should consider bringing down the vertical lines from the lantern, capping the stone expression at two storeys, and providing enough space between the lantern and the penthouse for the lantern to be celebrated. 
  • A Panel member was not in support of the proposed lantern's location as it appears out of place and is too close to the parapet edge of the building. Its current height is also very prominent, which was not the intent. The intent was to have an effect of a quiet glow and not a beacon floating above the tree canopy. 
  • There was a suggestion to place the heritage piece in the landscape. 

Architectural Expression 

  • The Panel questioned the vertical expression, given that the building currently has three languages. The vertical element should pick up the language of the heritage building and allude to the heritage element rather than creating a third language.  
  • The Panel appreciates the curvature of the upper floors as they provide a strong horizontal line and suggests bringing the curvature around the vertical element to resonate more with the lantern. 

June 3, 2022

105, 4050, 4051 SENCHA TERRACE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | Claridge Homes; NEUF architect(e)s; Novatech

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for coming to the UDRP but noted the proposal was premature. Given the importance of the development as precedent-setting, a more in-depth study and thorough presentation are needed for the Panel to provide meaningful feedback. The Panel suggested the proponent return for a second Formal Review.
  • The Panel believes the proposal is a departure from the interpretation and vision of the Secondary Plan for this site.

Context

  • The Panel has some concerns with the density proposed due to the abrupt change with the surrounding context, the location of the towers and the transition to the low-rise neighbourhood. The proponent should consider a holistic approach and include the surrounding low-rise development as part of the proposal to understand how the proposed density fits within the greater context.
  • More studies are required to justify the number of towers and units proposed as the Panel had difficulty evaluating the proposal, given the lack of analysis of the site's surroundings.

Site Design

  • The Panel appreciates the preliminary pedestrian views provided, but the Panel believes stronger ideas for place-making and open space for Landscape should be present.
  • The Panel strongly suggests taking a percentage of the site for parkland dedication. The proponent should consider providing parkland dedication on Blocks 22 and 23 facing the riverfront to create a meaningful public space that could be programmed with amenities for the residents and provide access to the future pathway system.
  • The Panel notes the site plan illustrates the negative space between buildings but is lacking information about the public realm, pathways, connections, and road sections, which makes it difficult to comment on the appropriateness of the tower placement.
  • The development turns its back to the community and does not relate to the local street. The proponent should be mindful of the relationship between the towers and the townhouses and consider the development as part of the community.
  • The Panel expects the site access and servicing to be further developed at this stage of the process.
  • There was a suggestion to capitalize on the site's features, such as Longfields Drive and the existing road system and links to the river and integrate them into the development.

Scale and Massing

  • An analysis should be undertaken to rationalize the design of the L-shaped building.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent develop a Master Plan showing transportation linkage, street connections, and public space distribution to evaluate whether the proposed density is appropriate.
  • The proponent should consider the development as a gateway site and a mid-rise node with high-rise buildings closer to the BRT station and more public access to the river. The low-density should have a height of 12 metres oriented towards the river.
  • The Panel is concerned that the number of mid-rise-sized blocks would affect the inside units' liveability. There is a question about the deployment of the mid and high-rise buildings and how the amenity spaces of those buildings would work as the façades are quite long.

 

1971 & 1975 ST. LAURENT BOULEVARD | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Starlight Developments; PETROFF; Fotenn Planning + Design

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the efforts to develop an area where density is needed are appreciated.
  • The Panel recognizes the constraints and challenges of the site, but the Panel believes the proposal needs to better integrate with the existing buildings.
  • It was suggested to return to the UDRP for a second Formal Review.

Context and Connectivity

  • The Panel appreciates the analysis of zones as they help identify the edge conditions, but the Panel believes the site needs to knit better with the existing community. For instance, a large site like this could accommodate some retail to make this development a complete community.
  • The proponent should consider the future context of the area, the adjacent developments and the existing park to inform the site's development, such as creating a meaningful connection.
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent consider better integrating the existing buildings with the new development.

Building Mass and Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the grade-related units fronting the parking and the cladding on the parking structure, but there are concerns with its relationship to the units facing the parking garage. The proponent should consider additional terracing of the garage to improve the condition.
  • The Panel notes Tower A acts as an anchor for the site, but the building could be taller to elevate its presence. Tower B should be aligned with Tower A, so they act as a pair, while Tower C could be lower and provide a height transition to the residential area south of the site.
  • The proponent should consider breaking up the balconies.
  • There is an opportunity to better integrate the base or to set back the tower to improve the framing and vertical elements at the end of the two-storey podium.
  • The towers appear top-heavy due to the wrapping soffits that cap the mechanical penthouse.

Site Plan

  • The Panel believes there is too much at-grade parking and questions the need for a parking structure; the proponent should consider reducing the amount of surface parking and relocating the garbage underground to improve and animate the public realm.
  • The parking should be consolidated or moved underground to provide an opportunity for a larger park south of the site.
  • The Panel notes there is a path of travel at the intersection on Russell Road that connects to the BRT. The proponent should consider that access point to guide the site's layout.
  • The ground floor plans show the internal road has a "back of house" condition given the loading access. The loading access location should be reconsidered, and the internal road should have residential uses facing either side.
  • The fan-like orientation of the towers could evolve to align with the road's curvature.
  • There was a suggestion to have retail or live-work units a grade, as this section of St. Laurent Boulevard has the potential to evolve into commercial street.
  • There was a suggestion to develop the at-grade parking fronting on Russell Road into townhouses to respond to the low-rise fabric on Russell Road and improve the street frontage.

Landscape Design

  • The Panel notes that several mature trees could be retained, and the site could be enhanced by adding rows of trees in the parking areas and along the streets.
  • The amenity space has a semi-public appearance, but the proponent should consider a more comprehensive approach, including programming for the space.
  • The shadow studies show the park has some sun in June but not much in other months. The proponent should consider relocating the park south of the site where the surface parking is as it would also create a buffer to the existing single-family houses abutting the edge. If it remains in its current location, consider reorienting Tower B parallel to Tower A to open the park.
  • The proponent should consider using the site's features to develop sustainable measures, such as stormwater management as part of the landscape design.

 

337, 345 MONTGOMERY STREET & 94 SELKIRK STREET | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | SerCo Realty Group; Project 1 Studio; Fotenn Planning + Design

 

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the thought process and integration of the podium and tower, but there are concerns regarding the height of the podium and the building's relationship to the east lot line and the adjoining sites.
  • The Panel believes the development should be scaled down and not exceed the maximum building heights in the area.

Context

  • The Panel notes Selkirk Street and the area west of the Vanier Parkway are considered arterial streets where typically high density and mixed uses are located. However, the development is located on a secondary road where a lower density is more appropriate.
  • The surrounding context is of a well-established mid-density buildings. The development needs to respond to the building fabric of McArthur Avenue, an interior lot. A building with the proposed height and density would be more appropriate at key nodes and intersections.
  • Regarding replicability, any future development surrounding the site would need to rely on lot amalgamation to accommodate a floor plate of 720-750 square metres and meet the Urban Design Guidelines for High-rise Buildings, which might be difficult to achieve.

Massing Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the building's architectural expression, materials, and proportions and the angled balconies on the upper floors. The titling of the building off Montgomery is generous and provides more space for the neighbourhood and the community.
  • The Panel believes an eight-storey podium is too tall, which is concerning given that from a pedestrian viewpoint, the sense of scale is lost. The building's relationship to the street is overwhelming. The proponent should consider scaling down the building. A more midrise development with a four-storey podium would fit within the neighbourhood and could be replicated on smaller lots.
  • The Panel notes that the adjacent properties would most likely be developed with three to four storeys buildings, which could establish a datum line that would not significantly depart from the context.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the planter wall as a gesture to the site's heritage, but the proponent should consider incorporating more of the original building into the retaining wall as a gesture to the neighbourhood while maintaining the requirements for a corner sight triangle.
  • There is an opportunity to refine the vertical elements further.

Public Realm

  • The Panel appreciates the proposed public realm, but there are some questions regarding the sidewalk's width. The Panel is concerned that the parking and slope challenges and the addition of planters will further reduce the area for tree planning, affecting the viability of the trees.
  • There is an opportunity to animate the corner by introducing commercial uses, such as a café.
  • The Panel appreciates the sustainability features.

 

1600 JAMES NAISMITH DRIVE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | 1600 James Naismith Holding Ltd.; Figurr Architects Collective; Fotenn Planning + Design

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the development is well located within the transit and pedestrian network, and adaptive reuse of the office building into residential use is supported.
  • The Panel appreciates the changes made to the building, including demolishing the atrium space on the ground floor to provide amenity areas and a terrace; however, there are concerns with the amount of parking proposed given the proximity to the LRT Station.
  • The Panel provided suggestions on the cladding at the base, glazing and integration of the park with the greater open space network.

Site Plan

  • The Panel considers the amount of parking proposed problematic, given that the parking fronting the building could accommodate a pavilion or a building for community uses. To reduce the amount of surface parking, the proponent should consider moving the building on phase three north of the property line and extending it west of the site to accommodate surface parking on the first couple of floors.
  • The Panel appreciates the Site Plan outlining the future phases of development, but the proponent should consider the site's integration into its context. A master plan of the current and future phases is needed to help understand the relationship between each development phase and the surrounding neighbourhood. The Panel views this as a block plan as opposed to a proper master plan.
  • The Panel cautions that the phase three high-rise buildings is quite close, and a buffer should be considered.
  • The proponent is encouraged to maintain the location of the existing driveway.
  • There was a suggestion to connect the development to Eugene Road.

Landscaping

  • The Panel appreciates the proposed landscape as it will connect with the existing amenity space and cycling network. However, the Panel believes there are more opportunities to improve the landscape, including re-examining the amount of parking proposed.
  • The proposed parking layout would remove mature trees, which could conceal loading areas. The proponent should explore accommodating parking between trees to retain as many trees as possible.
  • The southside is optimal for a park, given its proximity to the existing baseball diamond and the opportunity to provide amenities for the community. The proponent should consider providing a strip of parkland on the southern and southwest portion of the site to allow the existing trees to be retained and create an extension of the wood lot.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the efforts of retrofitting the façade, preserving the horizontal precast panels, and the articulation of the building, but the Panel believes more studies are needed to understand the effect of the mirrored finish glazing in terms of the residential use and the views from within at night. Further clarification is needed regarding the assessment of the energy efficiency of windows.
  • The dark colour treatment and the black band at the base give the building a harsh and squat appearance. The proponent should consider a lighter colour and a more contemporary expression for a clean, simple, and elegant aesthetic and have the band at two storeys to complement the two-storey expression at the back of the building.
  • The proponent should consider reframing the canopy and using lighter elements for a more residential feel.
  • The proponent's efforts to ensure the window well requirements are met to improve the liveability of basement units are appreciated.

Sustainability

  • The Panel appreciates the benefits adaptively re-using the existing building for residential purposes and recognizes the challenges of retrofitting a building but believes the amount of parking provided contradicts the site's sustainability and walkability measurements. The proponent should consider working with the site's slope to implement stormwater management, adding trees, creating pollinator roofs, reducing parking as much as possible, and using permeable pavers to reduce its impact.

 

ZIBI BLOCK 204 (315 MÌWÀTE PRIVATE) | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Dream Theia Ontario Block 204A LP; c/o Justin Robitaille & Paul Cope; NEUF Architect(e)s

 

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the changes made, including the rotation of the tower to a more orthogonal relationship with the other towers which is appreciated.
  • The Panel recognizes the proponent's efforts to study the views from different vantage points as the Panel believes capitalizing on the sky views is essential.
  • Regarding materiality, noble materials should be considered to ground the building within the context.
  • The Panel struggles with the proposed density as a high-rise building was not anticipated on this site. The Panel expressed concerns with the height of the podium facing Head Street Square as well as the articulation of the 9-storey podium as it deviates from the context of the area.

Massing

  • The Panel appreciates the changes made to the tower orientation that improves the views of the development from Parliament Hill. The Panel however believes that further changes are recommended in order to help the proposed development fit better within its context. The proposed building should have a higher podium facing Head Street Square to better frame its western edge and provide a sense of enclosure and visual termination to the square and to match the heights of the surrounding buildings. The Panel noted the importance of Head Street Square in the hierarchy of spaces and how the building and the neighbouring buildings should be seen to be designed to support the activities of this square.
  • The Panel believes the corner balconies ease the relationship between the building and the long sky views, but the nine-storey podium appears out of scale. The proponent should consider reducing its scale by a couple of floors to better fit within the context.
  • The proponent should consider reducing the building's dimensions in a north-south direction and extending the building in an east-west direction to create a slimmer building and allow for more sky view when viewed from the east.
  • There is an opportunity to create a node at the end of the corridor to invite people into the retail, signalize the plaza to the east, and extend the corridor to form a podium and provide a visual backdrop.

Materiality

  • The Panel is concerned with the quality and execution of the panels and how the tower meets the ground. The white element and the staggered balconies on the nine-storey element are effective, but the large black element facing the square does not have the same level of design; the proponent should consider a lighter element with finer detailing as the tower currently overwhelms the square.
  • The Panel appreciates the changes in architectural expression resulting in the slendering and fragmenting of the tower, but the contrast between black and white materials creates a complexity which the building may not need. The Panel recommends the proponent use a single material and a lighter coloration for the tower to knit better with the context and for the building to fade into the sky.
  • The Panel notes that the use of brick is predominant in the area and questions whether the lack of brick in the building makes the tower appear generic and out of context. The proponent should explore using more noble materials for the building to fit within the context.
  • The jogging of the windows on certain tower elevations should be simplified.
  • The Panel cautions there should be a clear difference between the fibre cement and the stone for the podium to stand out.

Public Realm

  • The Panel struggles to come to terms with the changes in height from the initial master plan as the Zibi master plan contemplated a lower building on this site.
  • The double base and the lower canopy podium facing the square lack human scale; the Panel believes a mid-rise base is more appropriate to create a street wall and sense of enclosure for the square and meet the one-to-one base-to-street ratio.

Sustainability

  • The Panel encourages the proponent to exceed the sustainability measures presented and consider sustainability more comprehensively. Measures such as green and blue roofs, passive house initiatives and considering the bird design guidelines were suggested.

May 6, 2022

150 KANATA AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | EMD – Batimo Group; P H Robinson Consulting; Rossmann Architecture; James B. Lennox & Associates Inc.

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the improvements made to the proposal, including the driveway connectivity, which responds positively to the adjacent development.
  • The Panel is cognizant of the site's challenges and recognizes the project's urban aspirations. However, there are still significant concerns with the grading and the building's relationship to the sidewalk and the street. From an accessibility perspective, the grade differential issue needs to be addressed, given that the grade change creates a barrier between the public sidewalk and makes the development feel disconnected from the public realm.
  • The Panel provided recommendations on how to break up the long façade and to address the corner expression for a more urban appearance.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel notes the building appears co-planar at the base, middle and top, and the colour blocking of the upper levels is less successful at articulating the massing. Furthermore, the upper brick and wood grain treatment does not create a clear datum line, and the upper balcony treatment detracts from the street wall expression. The proponent should consider recessing the balconies and breaking the long wing with a reveal.
  • The entrances could be highlighted by introducing pedestrian scale elements such as canopies to signal the location of the building's residential lobby.
  • The Panel appreciates the proponent's efforts to work with the adjacent property owner to create a unified public realm; however, concerns remain with the grade differential between the public sidewalk and the ground level that results in a ramped entry condition that limits the usable pedestrian space.
  • The Panel recommends that the proponent re-examine the corner treatment at the intersection and, instead of a wrap-around condition, explore a two-building approach.
  • The Panel believes the building would improve significantly if the east corner were more prominent. The proponent should consider an L-shape expression instead of a 45-degree angle or a taller middle section. Alternatively, the building could be broken into two separate masses to open up the views to the north and provide access to the amenities at the rear and the natural landscape beyond.

Grading

  • The Panel appreciates the changes made at the east corner, but new challenges have emerged as a result, including internal building circulation. Although more blasting will be required to have the building brought down to grade, the proponent should lower the ground floor to street level creating a more urban condition.
  • The canopy, signage, and the finer grain detailing are appreciated, but the Panel believes the retail's success depends on the building being at street level.
  • The residential lobby entrance at the parking garage level should be reconsidered, given that the sunken entrance creates more challenges than it solves.

Site Plan and Internal Layout

  • The Panel finds the interior layout of the building confusing in that the entrance on the corner leads to the parking garage. Connections to the Lobby along Kanata Avenue should be improved.
  • The Panel questions the at-grade rear parking lot layout as it is unclear how deliveries and moving trucks would circulate. The proponent should consider moving some of the at-grade parking underground to free up space for a private outdoor amenity area. Additionally, there is a concern with the parking ramp for Phase 1, which should be reconsidered.
  • The proponent should consider removing the first band of double-loaded driveways on P1 on Kanata Avenue and replacing it with liner retail at the street level. The loss of parking spaces can be relocated by adding another level of underground level parking in Phase 2.
  • It was suggested the proponent revise the stairs on the north side as there may be some building code issues.

Public Realm

  • The Panel has significant concerns with the building's relationship to the street, given the change in grade, which does not benefit the proposal. The proponent should consider lowering the building down to the grade of the surrounding sidewalks, thereby reducing the slope on the east corner for a building to create a more urban feel.
  • The Panel believes the landscaped plaza at the corner, accessing the residential entrance at the basement level, is problematic as the resulting sloped landscape on either side creates a more suburban entry condition rather than an urban plaza.
  • The number of parking spaces at the rear of the site impacts the site's porosity and interferes with connectivity to the natural landscape to the north. The Panel recommends the proponent reduce the number of parking spaces, relocate them underground, and implement a woonerf or a layby lane for drop-off, which would be more appropriate.
  • The proponent should consider streetscape lighting, bus stops, pedestrian lights, and bollards for a more urbanized public realm.
  • There is an opportunity to bring elements of the Canadian Shield, such as rocks and pines, into the site as part of Kanata's natural landscape.

2 ROBINSON AVENUE (320 LEES AVENUE) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | 2 Robinson Property Partnership; rla / architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation and the changes made as the project is evolving positively. The overall disposition of the built form is appreciated, and the proposed path system is a great addition to the community.
  • The Panel considers it beneficial for the development to return for a subcommittee meeting or for the proponent to develop design guidelines to inform the site plan design, including parking configuration and relationship to the podium and establish the future development phases, as it is important to consider how the development would evolve.

Massing and Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the simplicity of the podium and tower; the revisions made provide a clearer massing that opens the sky views and generally provides more light. The strong datum and small breaks in the podium where the towers come down to meet the grade are also appreciated.
  • The Panel believes the project would benefit from further study of the streets and podium designs. The proponent should consider designing the buildings as pairs (Buildings A and D, and Buildings B and C) to address the sameness of the towers.
  • The proponent should consider reducing the floor plate sizes to 750 square metres.
  • The Panel appreciates the disposition of the balconies, but the continuous balconies contribute to the heaviness of the towers.
  • More clarity is needed for the podium between Tower B and C, as the ground floor level appears squat.
  • The proponent should consider addressing the slab-like nature of the podiums by staggering them and introducing some variation in heights, step backs, and edge treatments.
  • There was a suggestion to have some height variation on the towers and podiums, make the six-storey podiums of Tower A and B eight storeys and make Tower A the tallest tower and for Tower C to be 28 storeys. Subsequent to the meeting, it was explained that the zoning by-law would not permit an increase in height.

Public Realm and Landscaping

  • The Panel believes more consideration should be given to the public realm. Given the size of the site and its porosity, the development would benefit from a phased master plan approach and guidelines that would create a vocabulary to inform the landscape configuration and treatment as the landscape concept appears to be more picturesque in approach and is disconnected from the modernist architectural concept presented.
  • The proponent should consider how the site will integrate with the community and how people will relate to the public realm and street life.
  • The Panel appreciates the disposition of the amenity areas and retail units that animate the courtyard south of Parcel A, but eliminating the service corridor and providing a through unit that could spill out into the courtyard would contribute to a livelier open space.
  • There is an opportunity for the east-west fire route to connect the courtyards and has more of a street feel. The proponent should consider removing the parking spaces from the turnaround and changing the parking layout.
  • The proponent should consider angling the service driveway at a right angle to Lees Avenue and moving the sidewalk along the fence to avoid breaking it up and to be more legible.
  • There was a suggestion to reorient the townhomes to face the park to provide eyes on the street and implement public art to create a sense of place.
  • More opportunities for LIDs, vegetation, and noise reduction should be considered to improve sustainability.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the use of wood colouring at the base and cautions of the use of too many dark colours, as the dark colour on the punch windows make the building appear heavy. The proponent should consider restricting the use of the dark elements to narrow faces only.
  • The towers generally get lighter towards the top with the exception of the mechanical penthouse, which has a darker grey coloration. The proponent should reconsider the grey coloration as the preference is for the towers to fade into the sky.
  • The Panel has some reservations regarding the performance of the wood metal finishing on the podium as it does not appear authentic; a more robust natural material is preferred.

229-247 BEECHWOOD AVENUE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application and Heritage Permit | Smart Living Properties Inc.; Woodman Architect & Assoc. Ltd.; James B. Lennox & Assoc. Inc.; Novatech

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file.

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. The building is well designed, and the changes made to the proposal are appreciated, but the Panel believes the building should knit better with the neighbourhood and be more sensitive to its surroundings, given that the most important aspect to consider is the ability of the development to knit into the context of the Rockcliffe Heritage Conservation District.
  • The Panel strongly recommends rethinking the sunken entrance and improving the pedestrian condition as there is an opportunity to create a finer grained landscape that reflects the gardens in the neighbourhood.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel believes the sunken lower level detracts from the neighbourhood's fabric, and some portions of the building, such as the balconies, have a commercial appearance.
  • The proponent should consider introducing elements on the façades that evoke a similar vocabulary to those in the neighbourhood, including porches and bay windows, in order for the buildings to better integrate with the context and reflect the residential scale and vertical rhythm of the street.
  • The Panel recommends providing an additional setback on the east and west sides of the buildings to provide more breathing room to the adjacent properties.
  • The proponent should consider removing the balconies or recessing the balconies and expressing them as insets or Juliettes, to quiet the facade. A picket rail guard should also be explored to relate to the heritage neighbourhood context.
  • The proponent should consider providing street access to the ground floor units.
  • The proponent should reconsider the lower level entry conditions as they are creating additional cuts through the landscape, causing a fragmentation of the streetscape treatment.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the use of brick and stone as these materials create some rhythm on the façade and reduce its commercial appearance; however, the fine-grained rhythm and articulation, required by the heritage conservation district, needs to be strengthened.
  • The top floor step back is minimal, and the horizontal articulation does not benefit the building's aesthetics. The proponent should consider a further step back and the use lighter materials to establish a stronger third storey datum.
  • The Panel notes the grey element at the corner appears co-planar; furthermore, the use of dark colours does not appear to be typical of the heritage district. The proponent should consider simpler materials, including the use of brick at the corner, and a colour palette that would better suit the neighbourhood's character.

Public Realm and Landscape

  • The Panel believes the proposed terracing is out of context given that the building is set back further from the street than the adjacent houses and is a different scale. The proponent should consider adding more vegetation and introducing trees on the terraces, such as cherry blossoms or magnolias. The landscape treatment should integrate with the adjacent properties to reinforce the continuous garden streetscapes of this heritage neighbourhood.
  • The proponent should consider all of the elements of the public realm to reinforce a main street concept, including street lighting, bollards and street trees to screen the buildings from the street.
  • The Panel believes that reducing the number of curb cuts and utilizing the street at the side for access would create a more robust and contiguous landscape.

Sustainability

  • The proponent should consider implementing green roofs, LID’s, reducing the number of balconies to mitigate thermal bridging and introducing permeable pavers to reduce storm water runoff.

455 COVENTRY ROAD | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment | Figurr Architects Collective; Novatech

Summary

  • The Panel is concerned with the replicability of the proposal. Given the lack of context and the preliminary nature of the proposal, the Panel struggled to provide detailed comments and visualize how the public realm would evolve.
  • The Panel recommends developing a master plan or design guidelines to ensure the site integrates well with the surrounding context and creates a liveable open space. More studies are needed to understand the future context of the neighbourhood, and further thought should be given to the building's relationship to the pedestrian realm.

Context

  • The proponent should calculate the FSI on site and apply the same density on adjacent sites to understand the appropriateness of four towers, the proposal's viability, and address the question of replicability as the current modelling does not show the true potential of the surrounding parcels.
  • A more detailed design is needed to determine phasing, timing, and the site's appropriate density. The proponent should study how the site connects to the neighbourhood and how the proposal would impact the adjacent site.

Massing and Scale

  • The Panel notes that more studies are required as there are questions regarding the overall massing for buildings D and B. A three-tower site is more appropriate than a four-tower site, given that a four-building site will appear to be overbuilt.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent study the sky views and further analyze how the towers would be experienced at the pedestrian level as a long façade on Coventry Road might not be appropriate.
  • The Panel believes the lack of a landscape plan and the amount of parking at grade makes it difficult to assess the scale of the site. Allocating 10 percent of the land for parkland would aid in visualizing the scale of the site.

Site Layout

  • The Panel recommends the proponent study the context and how the site's connectivity to the park and the neighbourhood will evolve. At this stage of the development process, the Panel recommends a simple building typology to determine the best location for an open space based on shadow studies.
  • Should the proposed density be permitted, more consideration to the open space should be given. The proponent should study the public realm to understand the benefits of setting back the building to create a relationship with the street and potentially transforming the access road into a mainstreet.
  • Further consideration should be given to the at-grade parking layout as parking for the retail component is yet to be determined.

The proponent should consider providing an access road to the piazza to open up the views and allow the sun to seep through.

April 1, 2022

120 Den Haag Drive (800 Montreal Road) | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Groupe Sovima; NEUF Architect(e)s; Lashley + Associates Corporation

Summary

  • The Panel supports the project and considers the building a positive addition to the neighbourhood, but the Panel believes further refinements to the building are needed to create a more simplified façade and clearly defined base, middle and top.
  • The public realm needs further refinement; the proponent should continue integrating the interior courtyard with the adjacent park and treat the retaining wall as part of the landscape rather than an extension of the building.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel has concerns with the street facing projected balconies, especially at the corner, making the building feel top-heavy. The proponent should consider in-setting the balconies at the corner and explore recessing or integrating all of the street facing balconies to strengthen the project as a street wall building.
  • The Panel notes the base and top floor treatment have created a corner expression that provides an opportunity to use a different architectural treatment to create a corner expression that will help connect the base, middle and top.
  • The Panel recommends further refinement of the façade by removing the columns at the corner and creating a cantilever expression to simplify the base.
  • The proponent should examine the end façades to emphasize the breaks and shifting volumes that serve to slender the façades.

Materiality

  • The Panel believes the building should be simplified as the base and top have different patterns of glazing and mullions, making the top appear taller.
  • The contrast of dark masonry at the base with the red brick middle portion needs further study. The changes in materiality appear co-planar, and the dark brick between the windows does not successfully add depth or articulation.
  • The proponent should consider using contrasting colours to make the top lighter, establish a clear and consistent datum line where the material changes to glass and simplify the two-storey base.
  • The Panel appreciates the use of red brick and cautions that the white metal that currently extends to grade will be difficult to maintain; a material with greater durability and permanence (such as stone or precast) may be considered.
  • There was a suggestion to study the south perspective to understand whether the framing of the lower level is successful at grounding the elevation and if the dark portion is the appropriate height.
  • The proponent should consider introducing green roofs and using limestone materials to improve the site's sustainability.

Public Realm and Landscape

  • The Panel recommends curving or terracing the retaining wall and using stone materials to create a distinct element that will be part of the landscape rather than an extension of the building. Furthermore, the Panel recommends the use of evergreen shrubs that are suited for Ottawa's climate and will provide year-round greenery.
  • The Panel recommends seamlessly integrating the interior courtyard with the park.

1047 Richmond Road | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment | FENGATE Asset Management; IBI Group; Fotenn Planning + Design

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the building's design is refined and elegant. The flush balconies and the fine grain use of materials are appreciated, but the Panel would like to see scaled elements relating to the immediate surroundings and the neighbourhood.
  • The Panel is concerned by the amount of development proposed on this site and considered that a two-tower development may be more appropriate.
  • The Panel is also concerned that the proposal requires more studies to ensure the buildings will knit well with the picturesque landscape and the existing pattern of development of single-family dwellings.
  • The Panel is supportive of the architectural development at this stage and looks forward to a more refined design at the Site Plan Control Stage.

Context

  • The overall massing and the relationship with the residential neighbourhood are a concern; the consensus is that a two-tower approach would be more appropriate as three towers, seen from afar, will create a walled effect. The Panel believes that more detailed studies are required to understand the context and inform the relationship of the towers with the broader landscape, ensuring the towers do not create a barrier between the residential neighbourhood and the views of the river.
  • The Panel notes the building’s aspirations are urban and suggests the proponent take a step back and study the potential developability of adjoining parcels with the same density level, to inform the replicability of the development.
  • The Panel recognizes that Richmond Road is an area in transition; however, the development needs to be sensitive to its surroundings as it is located within a well-established single-family residential area. The Panel believes that additional studies are needed to justify the density proposed on this site, given that the proposed architecture is informed by planning assumptions for a high-density proposal.
  • A 45-degree angular plane study and a tertiary plan would be beneficial to understand and better integrate the development with the neighbourhood, the public realm, and the future context.
  • The proponent should consider implementing a greater setback on Richmond Road to separate the high-rise buildings and the low-rise residential neighbourhood to the south.

Massing

  • The Panel believes that shadow impacts, void spaces, and a more generous streetscape, should be studied before defining the location and orientation of the podium. Additionally, varying heights for the podium should be considered to provide sunlight into the courtyard.
  • The current tower layout creates a wall along Richmond Road. The proponent should consider a more slender building footprint to determine the separation distance between towers and the tower distribution. Some panel members commented that the site could accommodate two towers but questions the third tower.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent study and explore an east-west mid-block connection to improve the porosity of the site.
  • Consider placing Tower C in a north-south orientation to provide all units with views of the river and remove Tower B to open the site to the river and allow for sky views between the towers.

Public Realm

  • The Panel appreciates the proposed park at the corner, but the Panel believes the area is too small for a park and too big as an urban forecourt. The Panel recommends stepping back the towers to provide a more generous setback on Richmond Road and New Orchard Avenue and to increase the park's area.
  • The proponent should consider framing the park with commercial uses, restaurants, and cafes to make it a focal point and consider masonry elements to tie the park to the building.
  • The proponent should explore introducing some of the landscape vocabularies of the surrounding landscape into the proposal.
  • The proponent should explore physically connecting the site with the river landscape by extending the courtyard with a more generous public realm along the street edge, to the open space to the north.
  • There is an opportunity to create a signalized intersection for a more pedestrian-friendly access to the LRT station.

Sustainability

  • The Panel considers the sustainability statement a good first step, but the proponent should consider elements of sustainability such as stormwater management and energy efficiency that can be brought to the site.
  • The proponent should study the wind and shadow impacts of the development on the surrounding neighbourhood.

70 Nicholas Street | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | CF Cadillac Fairview; zeidler; NEUF Architect(e)s; Barry Padolsky Associates Inc.; Commonwealth; Fotenn Planning + Design; CSW

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file.

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation. The high degree of design and the team's response to the Panel's previous comments are generally appreciated however one panel member prefers the previous massing which had a jog between the two wings as opposed to angling two wings.
  • The majority of the Panel generally supports the canted section of the building, and the architectural treatment is supported, including the glazing; however, there are mixed views regarding the projected balconies. There is a concern that projecting balconies will compromise the building's clean aesthetic.
  • The Panel appreciates the changes made to the public realm and understands that underground servicing poses a constraint; however, the Panel believes the public realm should continue to evolve as the streetscape lacks a coherent vision.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the goals and aspirations of the proposal with the high-rise building as a backdrop to the Registry Building; the site's jewel.
  • The canting of the building is generally supported by the majority of the panel members as it defines the public space in front of the building and partially screens the bridge structure and loading area. The canted wing’s architectural expression should be expressed differently to distinguish between the two volumes. The condominium building on Edward Street in Toronto was cited as an example where different cladding materials visually separate the two large volumes.
  • There is an opportunity to break up the tower massing by recessing the hinge element and wrapping the top of the northern volume to create a distinction between the two tower volumes on either side. Additionally, relocating the elevators to the hinge point will create an opportunity to open the views from the elevator lobbies.
  • There was a suggestion to break up the north end façade in a similar manner as the southern facade to reduce the perceived bulk of the building.
  • Insetting the balconies would create a more simplified expression.
  • The Panel recommends recessing the residential entrance and reducing the size of the canopy and refining the retail entrance canopy to provide more subdued signage for the Rideau Centre that doesn’t compete with the heritage building.
  • The base of the tower should be recessed further to create the effect of it disappearing behind the Registry Building and not competing with it.
  • One suggestion was to explore aligning the brick façade of the north canted section parallel with the street with a reveal in the two to give the impression of two pavilions, one with the heritage building and another framed parallel to the Ottawa Jail Hostel across the street.

Heritage Building

  • The Panel appreciates the expansion of the space between the Registry Building and the lobby. However, the Panel believes the heritage building still feels a bit pinched due to its proximity with the drop-off area. Shifting the Registry building further north would provide more breathing room and create a formal garden around it.
  • The treatment of the tower façade at the Registry Building should be as glassy as possible. The proponent should consider removing the mullions and instead exploring an aluminum silicone frame or aluminum spider joints to create a seamless transition between the interior and exterior.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the revision of the base and study of patterns, rhythm, and abstraction of elements on the Registry building. The building's simplicity relies on the execution of simple details in balcony guards and dividers. The proponent should study the fritted glass balconies to ensure a clean aesthetic is maintained.
  • The masonry mimicking of the Registry building's colour and proportions might not be as successful as desired; the design expression should be as simple and quiet as possible. The proponent should explore aligning the datum line from the north wing above the Registry building and continuing it across the podium to the south. The use of the same glass pattering will ensure that the Registry Building is seen against a glass backdrop from different angles.

Public Realm and Landscaping

  • The Panel believes a comprehensive landscape plan is needed. The small green spaces around the Registry Building need to be rethought, and the vegetation next to the walkway creates a barrier rather than opening up the area to create a plaza. Similarly, the tree next to the heritage building looks out of place.
  • The proponent should consider expanding the green area around the Registry Building to create a condition similar to the way in which the building was previously situated.
  • The Panel appreciates the proposed dog park, and there is general support for its implementation as it creates a moment of interest along Mackenzie bridge. The proponent should consider introducing decorative screening of the dog park and adding trees to soften and enhance the space.
  • There is an opportunity to introduce more pedestrian-level elements such as public art and lighting at street level to enhance the heritage building.
  • Elements such as pervious paving and green roof treatment should be considered to enhance sustainability.

Qatar Embassy (187 Boteler Street) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Applications | Ministry of Foreign Affairs, State of Qatar; GRC Architects Inc.

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation and found the proposed design elegant and appropriate for the intended use; the changes from the previous panel session are supported, and the panel believes the project is trending in the right direction.
  • The Panel focused their commentary on addressing the streetscape and public realm while maintaining the wall condition. Suggestions were provided for the wall layout and treatment, patterning, lighting, and elements to enhance the pedestrian experience and bring Qatar's landscape to the street.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the double layering treatment and the patterning of the facade; the champagne coloration works well and contrasts with the lighter material at the base. But the Panel notes that the underlay might not need to be a dark tone, as there is an opportunity to have some light and shadow between the layers, which was present in the previous iteration of the project.
  • The lighting at night is appreciated as it creates a feeling of a glowing lantern, but the Panel suggests the pattern could extend to enclose the mechanical penthouse. Soft lighting should be considered to create the sense that the building is floating in the landscape.
  • It is unclear whether cladding or spandrel glass is being used for the office building, The use of a single material might make the building look less heavy.
  • The Panel feels the guardhouse appears utilitarian and believes there is an opportunity to transform the guardhouse into a pavilion of a similar architectural expression as the main building to signalize arrival at the street level.

Public Realm and Landscaping

  • Although it is understood that there is a directive for a perimeter wall, the Panel reiterates that a walled site is not neighbourly. Further studies on how the wall would be perceived from different angles at the street level are requested for staff to review.
  • There is an opportunity to enhance the wall and create some rhythm by considering different materials such as masonry combined with metal cladding and taking cues from the building to create a patterned, more decorative tie in with the overall building's design.
  • The Panel notes the dark masonry wall is pixelated, and the change of colour on either side of the guardhouse accentuates its presence. The proponent should consider softening the perimeter wall with course brick and the use of lighter tones and textures representing Qatar's architecture.
  • As an opportunity to have a unique piece of Qatar in Ottawa, a segment of the wall could be utilized to tell a story represented through artwork.
  • The Panel suggests pulling back the eastern perimeter fence line to give some space back to the public realm. The east wall could be more fluid and have a curvilinear form that echoes the building and can create a softer transition.
  • The Panel recommends introducing landscape elements from the Canadian Shield to complement the Arabic peninsula and recall a more arid landscape. For example, a tundra garden, sand, and rock outcroppings would create a patterned landscape for a more dramatic entrance along Boteler Street.
  • Although the simplicity of the interior landscape is beautiful, there are opportunities to create pathways that have a subtle gradient or interlacing character to invite people to walk into the larger landscape of the site.
  • There is an opportunity to extend the lighting beyond the building and inner walled gardens into the trees and plantings of the public realm.

March 4, 2022

3484 INNES ROAD, 240 & 270 LAMARCHE AVENUE | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment, Site Plan Control Application and Plan of Subdivision | Groupe Lépine; Fotenn Planning + Design; NEUF Architect(e)s; NOVATECH

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the development's illustrations within the block's context are appreciated.
  • The Panel generally supports the walkway system connecting the park to Lamarche Avenue, but there are concerns with the development's transition to its surroundings. From an Urban Design perspective, further improvements to the public realm for a better east-west connection and the reorientation of Building C to animate the entire edge of the site are needed.

Site Plan

  • The Panel questions the master plan layout given the development's superblock appearance and suburban feel; more studies are needed to understand the overall plan, the site's connectivity and the relationship to the greater context and future development. The proponent should consider establishing a tertiary plan to create a more urban development with complete streets and pedestrian connections.
  • The Panel questions the suitability of low-density development on Innes Road and Lamarche Avenue as the area has the potential for increased intensification.
  • The proponent should consider situating two buildings west of the proposed looped road to create three entry points from Lamarche Avenue for better access.
  • There are considerable concerns with the parking layout on Building B as it creates a separation between the building and Françoise crescent. The Panel recommends removing the parking fronting Building B and relocating the ramp under the building to improve circulation and introduce more greenery.
  • The Panel is concerned with impact of the proposed on the neighbourhood to the south. The proponent should consider introducing shallow lots with row houses to blend with the existing residential development and using the park as a buffer between the low-rise and mid-rise buildings.

Public Realm and Landscape

  • The proposed public realm is appreciated, but the Panel believes the quality of the pedestrian connections would be improved by introducing a more robust landscape including double rows of trees, hedges and vegetation buffers to increase privacy between the path users and the private outdoor amenity areas and to the adjacent neighbourhood.
  • The Panel believes the park's current location makes it difficult to access and hinders its full potential to become a focal point for the community. The proponent should consider relocating the park to face Lamarche Avenue.
  • The Panel recommends reorienting Building C to align with Lamarche Avenue, increasing the base height to two storeys, and introducing commercial uses to create a street wall condition and pedestrianize the street.

Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the focus on masonry but notes there is an opportunity for the development to tie in with the existing neighbourhood by introducing brick coursing in a contracting colour.
  • The Panel does not support the ornate New Orleans inspired balconies. Given that Ottawa's climate differs from New Orleans, it is unclear how the structure will be executed on the façade and whether the metal frame will perform as expected.

Sustainability

  • The Panel believes there is an opportunity to improve performance of the site by integrating stormwater management and introducing more greenery to minimize the heat island effect and provide wind protection. The proponent should also consider district energy for the whole site and zero impact development.

325, 327 & 333 MONTREAL ROAD, 334 MONTFORD STREET & 273 STE. ANNE AVENUE | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | The Salvation Army; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; Projet | Paysage; Security Through Safe Design Inc.

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the changes made to the proposal, including lowering the west wing. The treatment of the Salvation Army store will bring a positive presence to Montreal Road. The Panel understands that the project is urgently needed, and the work with outreach groups to develop a program that provides facilities for those in need while being sensitive to the residential community is commendable.
  • The Panel supports the overall architectural expression, materiality, massing, and the project's aspirations. The Panel expressed some concerns and suggestions regarding the massing of the central volume and its impact on the internal lower courtyard, the treatment of the woonerf and loading area, and the staff parking configuration.

Architectural Expression and Materiality

  • The Panel appreciates the use of colour lining the window openings and the use of wood on the east block is subtle but impactful at the same time.
  • The height reduction and north-south orientation of the buildings respond well to the residential context.
  • The Panel notes the four-storey square volume for the community space has an introspect quality, is too large in scale, casts a shadow on the sunken garden, and the use of dark-coloured cladding material seems sombre and might not age well and fade over time. The proponent should consider a lower volume have warmer and brighter colours to evoke a sense of tranquillity and a place to gather.

Public Realm

  • The Panel appreciates the different types of spaces provided. It is evident that planting, buffering, and layering have been considered. But the Panel is concerned that cars would take over the woonerf and plaza. Ideally, the plaza should be a public space for pedestrians.
  • The proponent should consider creating a dedicated pedestrian route that would hug the west side of the thrift store and provide dedicated pedestrian access from Montreal Road. Additionally, parking within the loading area should be explored. Removing the two parking spaces at the corner of the parking area and replacing them with a planting bed will add greenery and help change the perception that the forecourt is a primarily dedicated to vehicle parking.
  • The Panel believes the concrete retaining wall adjacent to the entrance walkway separates the plaza from the woonerf. The proponent should consider using a more visually porous enclosure material. The proponent should also consider extending the same paving materials as the woonerf onto the walkway that extends to the centre's entrance to increase porosity and unify the entrance with the woonerf.

Site Plan

  • The Panel recommends switching the parking spaces and the drive aisle of the staff parking spaces to have the parking face the proposed building in order to minimize headlights flashing onto the residential neighbourhood at the rear.
  • The use of evergreens to screen the loading area is appreciated, but the buffer appears too thin on the site plan. The proponent should strengthen the buffer to have a more robust screening of the loading dock from the surrounding properties and the street.

Sustainability

  • A vegetation growth strategy for the trees and seasonality should be considered to anticipate how the site landscape will knit into the neighbourhood over time.

February 4, 2022

2025 Othello Avenue | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment | Osgoode Properties; rla/architecture; FOTENN Planning + Design

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for a thorough presentation; the completeness of the submission package and the general moves presented are appreciated.
  • The overall massing and urban design intent of the proposal along St. Laurent Boulevard are supported as they reinforces the streetscape. The building's setback from the residential neighbourhood on Othello Avenue is also appreciated.
  • The Panel provided recommendations for the podium treatment at the St. Laurent Boulevard and Pleasant Park Road intersection, the building's transition to the low-rise neighbourhood and pedestrian realm and site configuration.

Massing

  • The Panel believes that the 18-storey tower at Pleasant Park Road and St Laurent Boulevard. is too close and tall for that corner. The proponent should study the 45-degree angle to ensure there is an acceptable transition to the low-rise neighbourhood. A street wall building of 6 to 8 storeys at the intersection would be more appropriate than a lower podium and tower configuration.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent contextualize the proposal by studying the evolution of St Laurent Boulevard including the rhythm, scale and placement of future towers. Given the 40-metre right of way, a 6 to 8 Storey podium in some areas would create a much more robust public realm.
  • The Panel notes the St. Laurent Boulevard streetscape is evolving with commercial and residential uses. The proponent should consider locating more commercial uses at the north end of the site and integrating residential uses at the south.

Site Plan and Public Realm

  • The Panel believes the overall site plan needs a stronger pedestrian realm connection to the park and neighbourhood. There is an opportunity to enhance pedestrian connectivity by introducing a double row of trees along the sidewalk on Othello Avenue to create a strong and purposeful connection between Pleasant Park Road and the proposed public park.
  • A robust overall pedestrian realm strategy should be considered as the site intensifies over time.
  • The Panel appreciates the urban design aspirations of the project and believes the streetscape experience should be strengthened by introducing commercial uses at the corner of St. Laurent Boulevard and Pleasant Park Road and improving the street wall condition on St. Laurent.
  • The Panel recommends shifting the 27-storey building further north to create a stronger mid-block connection between St. Laurent Boulevard and Othello Avenue and to provide an opportunity for a courtyard on the north side of the site.
  • The Panel also recommends shifting the 18-storey building slightly north, extending the L-shape element and relocating the drive aisle access north of the building to create a strong pedestrian connection through the 9-storey buildings to provide better access to the proposed park.
  • The Panel believes the site would benefit from having a consolidated entrance to the underground parking to create well-defined sidewalks and green spaces and more integrated amenity spaces.
  • The site's connectivity could be improved.

Sustainability

  • The Panel appreciates the comprehensive sustainability statement and recognizes that sustainability issues can be addressed as the development evolves.

3996 Innes Road | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Ammar A. Aldu; Pierre Tabet architecte; J.L. Richards & Associates Limited; Ruhland & Associates Ltd.; ADAD Inc.

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation, the building’s design is elegant, and the attention to detail is appreciated. The Panel supports the material choices and the building’s overall look and feel. The ground floor treatment requires further study, as the material on the elevation makes the base appear dark and squat.
  • The Panel is concerned with the proposed site plan. The building location creates a very tight set back to the east lot line. The exterior amenity spaces are isolated at the rear of the property and not easily accessed. The overall consensus is that the orientation of the building should be rotated to align with the street creating a stronger street wall condition.
  • Should the current site configuration remain, the Panel believes more consideration should be given to the building’s entrance, its adjacency to the proposed parking and its proximity to the adjacent lot.

Site Plan

  • The overall look and feel of the building are appreciated, but the building’s proximity to the lot line is a concern, given that it will affect the development potential of the adjacent site. Should the massing remain the same, the Panel recommends shifting the building to maintain a minimum of 5.5-metre separation distance to the lot line.
  • The Panel believes the alternative massing fronting on the street is more appropriate from an urban design perspective as the building would conceal the parking from Innes Road. The building could be configured in an L or T shape to help alleviate proximity concerns.
  • The ground floor height should be increased to alleviate the squat appearance.
  • A stronger connection should be created to the rear of the property to improve access to the amenity area.
  • The Panel appreciates the building’s architectural expression; however, the building has a commercial appearance. This could be improved by celebrating the residential entrance and increasing its visual presence from the street.
  • The tightness of the site and its current layout create a perimeter sidewalk with limited access. The proponent should consider reducing the asphalt and the number of parking spots, in order to create a wider walkway connection from the street to the building entrance.

Landscape

  • The Panel has strong concerns with the location of the amenity areas as they are very constrained and difficult to access. The efforts to maintain trees are appreciated, but the proposed ramp and basement construction will impact the survival of those trees. The Panel recommends greening the site as much as possible, introducing permeable paving to improve site drainage, and identifying snow storage areas.
  • There is an opportunity to widen the sidewalk on Innes Road and provide a more comfortable pedestrian environment. The proponent should also consider the landscape treatment typical of a broader street cross section, with more significant setbacks, and introduce more planting and landscaping.

Materiality

  • The Panel believes the dark base treatment feels unwelcome and gives the impression of a squat ground floor. The proponent should consider introducing different materials to break up the glass façade.
  • The Panel suggests, if permissible, increasing the building height to allow for an increased ground floor height.
  • The Panel considers the building to be nicely articulated, with a three-storey light volume and dark material at the top. There is an opportunity to emphasize the residential character of the building by introducing trellises and a rooftop treatment that supports the projects sustainability measures.

797 Richmond Road | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment and Site Plan Control Application | Joe Tallis; Chmiel Architects Incorporated; James B. Lennox & Associates Inc.; Ainley Group

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation and expressed support for the proposal. The scale of the building is appropriate for the neighbourhood context and an important example of a building typology suitable for a transit node in an evolving context.
  • The Panel expressed concern with the proximity of the balconies to the west lot line as they will affect the developability of the adjacent lot. From a public realm perspective, the Panel supports the removal of the layby parking to maintain the public realm clear of vehicles. From an architectural perspective, the street façade needs to be simplified; the ground floor condition should be revised to improve its relationship with the street.

Massing

  • The Panel is concerned with the building’s proximity to the lot line, given the potential development of the adjacent lot. The proponent should explore an alternative to alleviate that condition or seek a limiting distance agreement with the adjoining property owner to ensure comfort for the units in perpetuity.
  • The proponent should consider a four-storey podium with a more slender top to better integrate the building with the context and create a mainstreet condition.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel recommends that the front façade be simplified, and the strong contrast approach should be reconsidered. The Panel believes the black volume above the ground floor does not promote the urban sidewalk experience, as the ground floor appears squat and the two dark volumes on the upper floors weigh the façade down. The proponent should take cues from the west elevation, which shows a more subtle articulation and elegant treatment, with contrasting black panels threading behind the white frame.
  • The Panel recommends a lighter treatment for the upper two floors, maintaining the four-storey setback and not extending the upper volume forward, in order to maintain the setback from the street edge.

Public Realm

  • The Panel does not support the layby parking.
  • The proponent should consider the public realm and streetscape across the street when designing the pedestrian realm, in order to understand pedestrian movement and anticipate where people would cross the street.
  • It was suggested to grade down to the parking garage, to avoid a tight turn radius at the rear.

Sustainability

  • The Panel appreciates the sustainability goals and notes there is an opportunity to introduce permeable pavers, green roofs and trellises to soften the urban condition and reduce the heat island effect, which directly impacts the survivability of the trees.

1400 Bank Street | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment | Figurr c/o iLiving Homes Corporation; Figurr Architects Collective

Summary

  • The Panel appreciates the skillful architecture and look and feel of the building; however, there are concerns with the building's proximity to the adjacent site and the podium height.
  • The Panel believes the biggest challenge is that the proposal deviates from the planned context and that more studies are required to justify the height increase.

Context

  • The Panel believes the development significantly deviates from the policy. Further studies and massing articulation on both sides of the intersection are needed to justify the increase in height and density. The consensus is that this intersection could be a minor secondary node instead of a major node.

Scale and Massing

  • The Panel appreciates the architectural resolution and material palette. The building is handsome, but there are concerns with the appropriateness of a high-rise building in this location. Its compact site, loading requirements and proximity to the lot line will affect the adjacent building's livability. A skillful and well-thought-out transition is needed to provide more breathing room to the adjacent building. Reducing the mass, floorplate, and height will benefit the project.
  • More studies are required to understand the building's relationship to the street to determine how a podium can unify and contribute to the area. From an urban design perspective, the proposed street wall height combined with the proposed red brick treatment gives the impression of a low street wall.
  • The proponent should consider expanding some units into the podium to create a higher street wall condition and take cues from the building to the north to determine a podium height that is more in keeping with the retail experience on Bank Street. A four-storey podium or higher would fit in the context, align better with the built form of the street, and potentially reduce the building's height.

Public Realm

  • The Panel notes the importance of understanding and studying how the building would contribute to the public realm improvement strategy. The Panel cautions that the retaining wall and raised planters will hinder public access to retail as access is limited to specific sections along the sidewalk. The Panel recommends introducing trees at grade in place of planters, as they typically have a short life span.
  • There is an opportunity to provide more vegetation and soften the condition at the rear of the site to reduce the impact of this development on the adjacent lot.

Sustainability

  • The Panel encourages the proponent to go above and beyond the sustainability measures, provide green roof terraces for stormwater management, and minimize the heat island effect.

January 7, 2022

322 Waverley Street | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment Application | Serco Realty Management; Chmiel Architects; Fotenn Planning + Design

John Stewart has declared a conflict of interest and has recused himself from commenting on this file.

Summary

  • The Panel recognizes the challenges presented given the heritage component and the surrounding context and believes the retention of the heritage building could create some issues, particularly the building's relationship to the public realm, due to the raised ground floor.
  • The Panel expressed concerns with the building's mass and scale, architectural treatment of the upper floor, and the amenity area's functionality at the rear.

Heritage

  • The Panel believes dismantling and reconstructing the heritage component and integrating it with the building's façade could hinder the development and create unnecessary constraints, such as the reduction of the side yard elevating the ground floor of the building, that necessitates the introduction of an accessibility ramp at the front.
  • The Panel suggests the proponent explore dismantling and integrating the heritage building in a more contemporary manner by repurposing the building materials to allow for a podium and base design that responds to the context of the area.
  • The Panel notes that replicating the canopy at the former main entrance does not provide any functionality and could be represented differently. The panel does not feel that the retention of the canopy is necessary (as it is not representing the degree of permanence of the brick structure).

Massing

  • The Panel believes the building's mass is too dense for the site, and the building's height and proportions should be reconfigured. A three-storey mass with a step back at the fourth storey would be more appropriate and respond better to the adjacent context.
  • From an urban design perspective, the building should align with the adjacent buildings to preserve the existing front yard setback and create a consistent streetscape.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent revise the south-facing suites on the upper level and relocate the primary windows oriented towards the rear yard.

Public Realm and Landscape

  • The Panel believes the building's relationship to the public realm needs improvement. The proponent should consider removing the ramp as it is challenging to maintain during winter and instead create a garden edge to frame the walkway, minimizing the curb cut to substantially reduce the amount of hardscape.
  • The Panel recommends the proponent relocate the bicycle storage to the basement as the proposed shed constrains the usability of the amenity area. Rather the Panel recommends converting the shed into an open-air structure such as a gazebo for residents’ use. It is also recommended to preserve the rear yard trees as much as possible to improve the building's interface with the adjacent rear yard.

Materiality

  • The Panel notes the architectural expression, particularly the solid elements, lintels, and sills above the glass expression, weigh down the building and require further exploration.
  • The proponent is encouraged to explore a more subtle contemporary architectural expression and to use a different fenestration pattern, as the square expression does not resonate well with the rest of the building or the immediate adjacent neighbourhood context.
  • The proponent should consider a picket rail guard on the balconies instead of a glass railing to better relate to the finer grain scale of the details of the adjacent single family heritage houses.
  • Further studies on the brick coursing and detailing of other heritage buildings in the area are needed to apply a finer grain of detailing to the building.

Sustainability

  • The Panel believes the project is an excellent example of implementing passive house initiatives.

1546 Scott Street | Formal Review | Zoning By-law Amendment Application | Reid's Heritage Properties; IBI Group; Tregebov Cogan Architecture

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for their presentation; the proposed floorplate allows for suitable size units and creates a sleek, elegant building that fits well with the buildings on Tunney's Pasture.
  • The Panel supports the overall building's design and vision for the site and pavilion on Scott Street, but the Panel has concerns with the amount of the front façade dedicated to vehicles and the quality of the north-south pedestrian connection, given that a relationship between the neighbourhood to the south and Scott Street is essential.

Context

  • The long-term vision for the neighbourhood and the planned context of the area should be considered. The proponent should indicate how the building would align and integrate with institutional, residential and commercial uses cohesively.
  • The Panel believes it is vital that the project be connected to the neighbourhood to the south as the Parkdale Market, and Wellington Street provide amenities for residents. A north-south pedestrian connection would permit residents to walk to those areas and knit the development better with the surrounding context.

Architectural Expression

  • The Panel appreciates the addition of a pavilion, the play of architectural expression in the elevations, and the central element capping the top.
  • The pavilion would read more strongly if the building had a 3-4 storey base, and the tower was stepped back from the podium. This would emphasize the projection of the pavilion and improve the scale relationship between it and the street wall of the building.
  • The Panel recommends further refinements to the canopy as it appears imposing.

Landscape

  • The Panel notes that the current landscape treatment does not support the long-term vision of wider sidewalks on Scott Street. The proponent should study how the building landscape integrates with the street, given that Scott Street is the main artery.
  • The Panel notes the area is in flux given the future redevelopment of Tunney's Pasture and the LRT, which provides an opportunity to study the landscape of the neighbourhood, understand pedestrian movement and the future of Scott Street. The proponent should consider pedestrian connections, the building's relationship to the lot line, and how the building meets the street.

Pedestrian Circulation

  • The shared right of way is appreciated, but the Panel believes further improvements are needed. The proponent should consider removing the number of surface parking spaces and introducing a tandem parking configuration to facilitate drop off, using pavers instead of asphalt for the turning radius area, implementing skylights to create a more welcoming space and a bollard system with flush curbs to humanize the space.
  • There was a suggestion to explore other access points from the back or side of the site and to create a north-south pedestrian connection to provide safe passage.

Materiality

  • The Panel considers the front façade to be reminiscent of commercial buildings with an architectural vocabulary of the 70s and 80s and believes there are some challenges in translating the stone material into a more residential context.
  • The Panel notes that a high degree of architectural excellence is required. The details will need to be well conceived, and the building well crafted to achieve the ephemeral qualities shown in the rendering.
  • The proponent should ensure the two-storey panel expression of the window wall system is well designed and implemented to achieve the desired effect. With this in mind, consider simplifying this expression.
  • The Panel appreciates the effect of the balconies being recessed, contributing to the sleekness of the tower.

Sustainability

  • The proponent should consider sustainability measures beyond those implemented on a TOD site and focus on the long-term benefits of doing so.

1186 - 1194 Wellington Street West | Formal Review | Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendment Application | Minto Communities Canada; DIALOG; Fotenn Planning + Design

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for their presentation. The positive changes made to the POPS and woonerf, the sculpting of the tower and the podium articulation on Wellington Street, and the strengthening of the theatre component are supported.
  • The Panel appreciates the tower's reduction, but concerns remain regarding the replicability of the development. The consensus is that a 6-storey podium would be more suitable for the site.
  • There is an opportunity to further articulate the façade on Parkdale Avenue and revisit the podium above the heritage building.

Scale

  • The Panel remains concerned with the tower component and the issue of replicability. There are two 9-storey buildings on the corner of Parkdale Avenue and Wellington Street, and the concern is that adding a 16-storey building on that corner could be overwhelming from a pedestrian and street view perspective.
  • The Panel believes that more studies, perspectives of the street and intersection and street elevations, illustrating the tower in a high-rise context, are required to evaluate the impact of the proposed building and the implications of setting a precedent.
  • Further analysis is needed to support the proposed massing; a 9-storey podium is overwhelming at the pedestrian eye level; sky views and shadows may cause issues at 9-storeys. The consensus is that a 6-storey podium would be more appropriate. The Panel recommends that the proponent explore a 6-storey podium with a setback at the seventh storey and above.
  • The building's proximity to the church remains a concern; it was suggested to provide a further setback or relocate the tower closer to the street to minimize its impact on the church.

Architectural Expression

  • The introduction of masonry on Wellington Street is successful, and the co-planar nature of the tower and podium element at the POPS corner improve the proportions of the massing.
  • The Panel believes the stepping down of the façade on Parkdale Avenue is a positive move, but the slight setback and articulation between the base and the tower treatment should be more prominent and be treated with the same importance as the façade on Wellington Street.
  • The horizontal elements make the building seem out of context and give the building’s mass an elongated appearance. The Panel recommends the proponent introduce a vertical pattern to improve this condition.
  • The solid guard above the ground floor expression and the inset balconies are appreciated.

Heritage

  • The changes to preserve the theatre marquee expression are appreciated, but the Panel believes the three-storey element above diminishes the heritage component. The Panel recommends the proponent reconsider removing the three-storey expression above the heritage component.

Materiality

  • The Panel notes the sleekness of the building might not be contextually appropriate due to the variety of materials found in the neighbourhood. The Panel recommends that the proponent take cues from the area's materials when selecting masonry for the building.
  • The planar elements on the north and south façade of the podium and the east and west façades of the tower are appreciated, but a high level of architectural detail will be required to achieve the crisp edges of the materials, given that the renderings show the proposed brick to be co-planar.
  • The Panel appreciates the progress made on the window wall system, illustrating mullions to reflect a more realistic appearance.

Public Realm

  • The changes made to the building's mass to expand the POPS are appreciated, but the Panel urges the proponent to maintain the POPS as a publicly accessible space and not be an extension to the proposed retail.
  • The Panel appreciates the commercial uses and amenity spaces introduced to ensure the woonerf is animated.

Sustainability

  • The development provides an excellent opportunity to implement LID measures and sustainable energy initiatives and to support active transportation.

Rochester Heights (818 Gladstone Avenue) | Formal Review | Site Plan Control Application | Ottawa Community Housing; Propriétés ARRIV Properties; Hobin Architecture; Fotenn Planning + Design; CSW Landscape Architects

Summary

  • The Panel thanked the proponent for the presentation; the comprehensive package and various views and perspectives are appreciated.
  • The Panel supports the overall massing distribution and architectural expression and notes that the proposal is an exemplary project with the preservation of trees, passive housing initiatives and the investment and understanding of the value of architectural excellence.

Site Plan

  • The Panel appreciates the general layout of the block and the generous open space, but the Panel believes the future phases of the development should be considered to understand how the site fits within the evolving neighbourhood fabric, given that there is the potential to align the servicing aisle with Arlington Street.
  • It was suggested to reorient drive aisles to reduce the number of curb cuts on Booth Street.
  • The Panel recommends setting back Building A further to widen the sidewalk to enhance and preserve the view of St. Anthony of Padua Church as people travel west on Gladstone Avenue.
  • The Panel would prefer less parking on-site; the proponent should consider on-street parking for visitors and remove on-site visitor parking to utilize the space for a courtyard.

Accessibility and Connectivity

  • The Panel believes accessibility to the site to be paramount. Stairs should be paired with ramps to improve accessibility, and the grade differential on Gladstone Avenue should be minimized.
  • The proponent should consider splitting the slab at grade, increasing the floor to ceiling height or introducing sloped floors on the parking garage of Buildings A and B.
  • The use of brick cladding or garden walls for a more graceful transition should be considered, to address the grade change and improve the public realm on Gladstone Avenue.
  • There is an opportunity for a through lobby connection between the internal street and Rochester in Building B.
  • The Panel supports and appreciates that the pedestrian circulation and connectivity expand beyond the site.

Public Realm

  • The Panel recommends further buffering of the stacked townhouses from the park and the introduction of a buffer between the townhomes and future development phases.
  • The proponent should consider introducing commercial uses facing Piazza Dante Park, an important focal point for the community, to animate and activate the Piazza.
  • The Panel believes the two-tier approach to the public realm on Gladstone Avenue should be reconsidered as the buffers may reduce the ability to provide wider sidewalks.
  • It was suggested to relocate lobby entrances on public realm frontages to provide additional animation.

Architectural Expression and Materiality

  • The Panel notes the subtle architectural moves are well balanced and proportioned and the use of colour and masonry are appreciated.

Sustainability

  • Sustainability measures such as integrating district energy on-site and in future phases of the development should be considered as well as EV charging stations, increased vegetation at street level and rooftop solar farm, to meet sustainability goals.