Heritage minister leaving LeBreton Flats with NCC
Plan's collapse 'disappointing,' but 'not up to me,' heritage minister says
Canadian Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez said it's "very disappointing" that a plan to redevelop Ottawa's LeBreton Flats has fallen apart, but he doesn't intend to get directly involved.
At a National Capital Commission's board meeting Thursday, Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk and his partner in the project, Trinity Development Group Inc., were given a January deadline to work out issues between them.
The next day, Melnyk's company, Capital Sports Management Inc., filed a $700-million lawsuit against his partners in the project, effectively ending any hope of reconciliation.
Rodriguez said Monday he was disheartened to see the project stall.
"It is very disappointing, and I understand the frustration of the people from Ottawa and Gatineau," he said in the House of Commons foyer.
Rodriguez said the NCC is working on the project, and remains confident the federal agency will find a good use for the prime land just west of the downtown core.
"It's not up to me to decide, but I know the NCC is working on this. It's a very important project for residents from Ottawa and Gatineau and the whole region," he said. "We want to move forward and we want things to happen."
With files from Chris Rands