Posted by: HamptonIona | March 5, 2011

Council to Vote on Convent Land Purchase this Week

The Westboro CA has published an email received from Councillor Hobbs yesterday afternoon detailing the vote to take place on the Convent land purchase at city council’s meeting this week (more details can be found at The Ottawa Citizen):

“The issue of the potential acquisition of parkland at 114 Richmond in accordance with the motion approved by the last Council on November 19th, 2010 is a significant issue in Kitchissippi Ward.

The zoning by-law as adopted by Council requires that decision on acquisition and any area rate be made by the end of March.  As there is only one regular meeting of Council in March, that being on March 10th, I have spoken to the Mayor to ensure that the necessary directions were given to staff to ensure that the parkland issue is before Council on that date so as not to lose the opportunity to acquire the parkland merely through the passage of time.

As the appraisal was only finalized recently, this will not permit the opportunity to bring this matter before Planning Committee where there would be the opportunity for delegations.  As it is vital for there to be public input on this matter, I have arranged for a series of public meetings across the ward to gather the views residents and businesses.  While the policy of the City is only to resource one ward meeting for an issue, because of the significance of this matter, as your Ward Councillor, I have been able to provide for five Ward meetings and a presentation at the Hampton Iona AGM to gather views across Kitchissippi.

A number of options have been suggested with respect to the potential of acquiring lands at 114 Richmond as parkland.  These include:

1)      Acquiring all the lands to the south of the convent;

2)      Providing for a payment period of 20 rather than 10 years;

3)      Obtain a second appraisal

4)      Request a contribution from City-wide parkland funds

An independent appraisal was obtained for the cost of the parkland acquisition.  Given this and the limited time for Council to make a decision on the acquisition it would not seem that obtaining another appraisal would assist.

With respect to seeking a contribution from City-wide parkland funds, the Council decision of November 19th, 2010 does not allow for contributions from the wider City.   While I know that you would wish it otherwise, it is not to be expected that Council will approve a contribution from City-wide parkland fund.

I and my Council colleagues are very much interested in the views of Kitchissippi residents and businesses with respect to the question of whether parkland at 114 Richmond should be acquired by the City.  If you have not already come to one of the public meetings, I would encourage you to do so to provide your input.  The time and places of the remaining meetings are:

March 5, 2011
3 – 5 P.M.
Churchill Seniors Recreation Centre
345 Richmond Rd.

March 6, 2011
3 – 5 P.M.
Ottawa Civic Hospital
Amphitheatre (Main building access from Ruskin St.)

March 6, 2011
7 – 9 P.M.
Champlain Park
140 Carleton  (Field House)”

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