By Charlie Senack –
Roughly 100 Kitchissippi and River Ward residents packed the Alexander Community Centre on January 22 to get their first detailed glimpse at the phase one plans for the re-development of the aging Westgate Shopping Centre.
Councillors Jeff Leiper and Riley Brockington were on hand to address residents questions and concerns, as well as officials from RioCan, the property management company that owns the shopping centre.
A public meeting was held at the Alexander Community Centre tonight to talk about the re-development of the Westgate Shopping Centre. Here is a look at the plans. @Kitchissippi #ottnews pic.twitter.com/b0qD6DBePj
— Charlie Senack (@Charlie_Senack) January 23, 2019
In June 2017 city council voted in favour of rezoning the land, but now the site plan control application needs to be approved — and that may not happen until the end of the year.
“We expect this process could run well through maybe the rest of the year which is not uncommon for a site plan approval in any city, not just in Ottawa,” says Stuart Craig, Vice President of development for RioCan.
Phase one of the project would be constructed on the site of the current Monkey Joes restaurant, and would see a 24-storey mixed-use rental building built. It would house 216 units and multiple stores on the ground floor. It would also include 192 underground parking spots, 32 surface spots, and parking for 200 bicycles.
Once the site plan control application is approved and shovels are in the ground, it would take about two years for the building to be completed. Phase two of the project won’t even be looked at until phase one is finished, and residents have moved in.
“This will probably take about 4-5 years from today until when it’s finished,” Stuart Craig told the crowd. “And what we mean by finished is when all the units are full, everything is done, and it’s been stabilized for a while. At that point we will start on phase two.”
Looking at the project long term, RioCan says this is a project that could be taking place for the next 15-20 years. More public meetings are expected to be held in the future.
Missed the meeting? View the proposed plans online.