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'Significant milestone' reached in LeBreton Flats redevelopment, says NCC

Ottawa's LeBreton Flats are seen in this drone image taken on July 1, 2022. The NCC says construction on some 900 residential units could begin by the end of next year. (Patrick Morrell/CBC - image credit)
Ottawa's LeBreton Flats are seen in this drone image taken on July 1, 2022. The NCC says construction on some 900 residential units could begin by the end of next year. (Patrick Morrell/CBC - image credit)

The National Capital Commission (NCC) says it's made significant progress on the third phase of the LeBreton Flats redevelopment project, which could potentially see 900 housing units built on the largely vacant site next to Ottawa's downtown.

During an NCC board meeting Wednesday, staff said the NCC has selected development companies Avenue 31 and Cogir as the preferred proponents for part of the LeBreton Flats project.

Both companies will be tasked with building residential towers of between 12 and 20 storeys across four parcels of land along Wellington Street next to the Canadian War Museum and the LeBreton event grounds.

Katie Paris, who leads the Building LeBreton project for the NCC, said there will be a diverse range of housing options, with both rental units and condos for sale. At least 15 per cent of the units will have three bedrooms or more, she said.

The project will also include affordable housing, typically defined as costing no more than 30 per cent of pre-tax income for households earning in the lowest 20 per cent.

The units will also be built with a "zero carbon focus" in mind, said Paris, making "the Flats District and Lebreton Flats one of the most sustainable neighborhoods in Canada."

The buildings will also be able to connect to "a future district energy system" to provide low carbon heating and cooling, she said.

Algonquin partnerships

The land sits on traditional Algonquin territory, and some nearby Algonquin First Nations had previously said they were looking to form long-lasting partnerships around the redevelopment project.

It appears the NCC is honouring those requests, with plans to award a minimum of five per cent of the contracts to Algonquin companies.

Five per cent of the workforce on the project will be reserved for members of Algonquin First Nations, as well as five-year minimum apprenticeship opportunities.

Paris said designing this phase of LeBreton Flats will continue over the next year while the NCC and the proponents negotiate a ground lease by the end of 2024.

Construction of the project is subject to city approval, but Paris said the goal is to begin building by the end of next year.