Feedback for the Manotick Secondary Plan Land Use

I want to thank the residents of Hillside Gardens for their patience Friday evening into Saturday afternoon during the water outage. On Friday, January 23 at 5:10pm, I was notified that a water leak was discovered within Hillside Gardens and that residents would experience some reduced water pressure.  However, by 10:00pm, it became evident that more work would be required to fix the leak and by 2:00am, water was shut off to the entire community. While I did my best to notify residents via Twitter, CFRA and some emails, staff sent out crews to further notify residents by going door-to-door on Saturday morning. By approximately 2:00pm, water service was returned, a few hours later than expected. Thanks again to everyone for their patience during the repair and water outage.

Manotick Secondary Plan: Land Use

On Thursday, January 22nd, I hosted a meeting at the Manotick Arena to discuss land use in the Secondary Plan. As you know, we are currently conducting a review of Manotick’s Secondary Plan and I felt it was important to have a conversation about several parcels of land in the village in terms of what they could be used for. This stems from the fact that Minto’s lands were not explicitly defined in our previous plans in that development was contingent merely on the arrival of central services. There were no specifics identified when it came to number of units, lot sizes and so on.

The idea now is to determine the potential use of the land in consultations with the community instead of waiting for a developer to decide how they want to use the land. We can proactively look at these parcels and designate them as we would like to see them since it is more likely than not that these lands will be developed at some point. To that end, I’ll present those properties to you here so that anyone who wasn't able to attend the meeting will have an equal chance to respond. Keep in mind, no such applications exist for these lands at this time. We are merely talking about what could occur knowing how other similar lands have been developed.

4386 Rideau Valley Drive

This is the vacant farm land at the corner of Bankfield Road and Rideau Valley Drive North, the majority of which is within the current village boundary. Its current designation is for estate lot residential but with servicing along Rideau Valley Drive, this isn’t exactly realistic. Perhaps this site is more ideal for mid- to high-density housing or even some commercial uses. Consensus at the meeting seemed to be that higher density was warranted because of the existence of servicing but opinions were split on having commercial properties at the corner of Bankfield & Rideau Valley Drive. What are your thoughts?

5517/5521 Manotick Main Street

These are the former McNeil Motors properties at the southeast corner of Bridge Street and Main Street. Currently vacant, the property is designated within the Main Street character area and has a variety of potential uses. The type of development that the current Secondary Plan encourages here is up to three stories with ground floor commercial and residential on the top two floors. I didn’t sense any desire to have the uses changed here. The only question I really had here was whether or not “gas bar” is still an appropriate use at this location.

Ann Street Lands

We had a discussion about building heights a couple of years ago in which it was very evident that the village wanted the height limit within the Village Core to remain at 11m, or three storeys. At the moment, the building height throughout the village is the same as in the core. The question at hand is whether or not there should be an area, outside the core, designated for taller buildings, up to five storeys. In looking at properties near the core that wouldn’t negatively impact the heritage feel of our village Main Street, the properties between Ann Street and Scharfield Road stand out as the most likely location for a taller building.

At the moment, nobody is lobbying to build a 3+ storey building in Manotick but such buildings are being built in villages like Carp and Richmond. With no specific designation in the village, a developer could suggest a taller building go anywhere in the village. However, if a specific area were designated, we could then direct that type of growth to that area and better protect our village core. I put this out there for your feedback and opinion. The feedback at the January 22nd meeting was also mixed on this point so the more I hear from you, the better informed our Secondary Plan will be.

5731/5741 Manotick Main Street

These vacant lands fall in between Island View Drive and Kelly Marie Drive, east of Rideau Valley Drive.  The land is currently designated and zoned for low density residential.  This property does have the potential to be connected to city services as well as the Minto development will be directly across the street, eventually.  The feedback received on this property so far has been that the space nearest the river should be protected for public use and the balanced should be residential, anywhere from low to high density.

Employment Lands

The triangular shaped swath of lands between First Line Road, Elijah Court and Bankfield Road are current zoned as Development Reserve but designated for Mixed Use Development. Essentially, the current Secondary Plan has identified this area for commercial/industrial use but it has remained untouched for over 30 years. As the village grows, that could change. What types of uses would you see as appropriate in this location? One comment I received suggested that a gas station is much more appropriate there than in the core. In recent years, I’ve also had suggestions of a storage facility but is that something we’d want in an area that could be seen as a gateway into a fully built out Manotick in 30-40 years time? At the meeting, the impact of the Kars esker came up with regard to this property and I’ll be looking further into how that should impact future development as well.

Summary

Those are the specific locations that we discussed on January 22nd and I welcome as much input as possible in order to best inform our Secondary Plan. Again, I’m not suggesting these things are happening now, but my experience leads me to believe that these things are possible.  Instead of waiting for a developer to tell us how to develop Manotick, let’s give some consideration to making those decisions ourselves.

There will be another Secondary Plan Review meeting in the coming months to further discuss the entire plan.  For more information of the review, please visit www.ottawa.ca/manotickplan.  Thank you very much for your participation in this process.

If you have any comments, questions or concerns, please feel free to email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491.