A new development project with a residential condo tower, offices and a large reception space could soon be built in Orleans, in what city officials say would be a major boost for the community.
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson and Councillor Bob Monette announced plans for Petrie's Landing III on Thursday at a business breakfast with the Orleans Chamber of Commerce.
The proposed project, conceived by the development company Brigil Homes, would be located on North Service Road alongside the Ottawa River at Petrie's Landing. It would include close to 370,000 square feet of office space, a 64,000-square-foot conference hall and 22,000 square feet of retail space, as well as a condominium tower.
Brigil has already built one condominium tower in the same area — called Petrie's Landing I, as well as a group of low-rise condominiums, called Petrie's Landing II.
The project will now face a public consultation period, beginning Thursday and lasting until December, when the city will vote on the official plan. Monette said should the project go forward, Brigil would then go through the site plan application process, allowing for additional consultations with residents.
"It is important for the public to say where we are and the position we have taken," said Monette.
Office space could lead to local jobs, shorter commutes
Monette said many people live in Orleans, but few are able to work in the area. He hopes this proposal could change this dynamic and eliminate hefty commutes to downtown offices for some residents.
"I think employment was something that was missing in our community," he said.
Monette also said this kind of space is desperately needed in his community. It currently lacks a conference hall big enough to host events with large groups.
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson said the proposal is "welcome news for the east end's infrastructure and economic development."
Watson also said the city has worked diligently in recent years to clean up nearby Petrie Island. A waste-treatment plant located upstream from the beach had a gate malfunction five years ago, which caused raw sewage to end up in this part of the Ottawa River.
"We are going to do our part to make sure pollution is minimized and ultimately eliminated in the next couple of years," Waston said. "So it is going to time nicely with the construction of this project."
Jamie Kwong, executive director of the Orleans Chamber of Commerce, said the proposed project would help to fill "major gaps" in the community of Orleans.