Manor Park Management acquired Manor Park in the 80s, while the housing project itself was built in the late 1940s. Even well-maintained buildings gradually become outdated with respect to the use of materials now deemed hazardous; changes in the building code; and achieving climate sustainability objectives. Continued repair and refurbishment without some means of recovering that investment is not a realistic financial plan for rental properties. The timing to initiate a Concept Plan to redevelopment the Gardens (North) and the Heights (South) has now been deemed critical as the planning and approval exercise to do so is lengthy. Given market demands and construction timing, this redevelopment project could easily span a 25-year or more period.
Frequently Asked Questions
What has prompted Manor Park Management (MPM) to initiate a process to redevelop its Manor Park properties including the preparation of an overall redevelopment concept plan?
What is a Redevelopment Concept Plan?
A Redevelopment Concept Plan provides a framework for growth by identifying future land uses, major road networks, and other challenges and opportunities for growth within an area, while maintaining a balanced approach to planning that addresses the interests of the surrounding community and city at large. Concept plans are non-statutory plans meaning they are not approved by a bylaw. Instead, they are approved by a council resolution to adopt the plan. Once approved, this plan forms the foundation for implementation through an overall rezoning of the property with redevelopment phasing controlled by holding provisions on a site by site basis.
Concept plans identify:
- opportunities and challenges for development
- environmental and heritage features
- existing and proposed land uses
- existing and proposed infrastructure and community services
What does a “redevelopment through a phased strategy” mean and why is MPM opting for this approach?
“Redevelopment through a phased strategy” implies that MPM will explore the best options for redeveloping its property over a 25 year span. The project will take into consideration where and when redevelopment should occur within the 35 acres that make up the entire site. Through a carefully thought out phasing scheme the new Gardens (North) and Heights (South) will have ample time to work with existing tenants to address their relocation needs within the Community as well as bring new residents into the area.
What are the current guiding principles that have been considered to drive this redevelopment exercise?
The six guiding principles are:
a) Affordable Housing: create a compact and complete community that integrates and provides diverse affordable housing to accommodate a variety of residents.
b) Sense of Place and Community: provide generous and defined courtyard amenity spaces to maintain the existing relation between residents and the open space.
c) Mobility and Ease of Movement: Manor Park Estates/Heights will be a pedestrian-oriented community. Walking and cycling will be encouraged by providing safe and comfortable infrastructure to and from transit and existing pathways.
d) Connectivity: Create a network of private and public open spaces parks and public realm to reconnect the site with the surrounding neighborhood and existing natural features through a seamless continuity with the abutting surroundings.
e) Memory: The Redevelopment will draw from and build on the legacy of the original plan for Manor Park. From the existing character of the range of housing styles, greenspace, connectivity to the layout of the streets, the new development would be reflected in the future of the community.
f) Built form and scale: Proper building height transitions will be carefully designed. Separation between high-rises and mid-rises will ensure privacy for residents, sunlight exposure, and views to the NCC Aviation Parkway trail.
How will existing residents of the Gardens (North), the Heights (South) and the surrounding Community benefit from this exercise?
Both the existing tenants and the surrounding Manor Park and area residents will be invited to take part in the Redevelopment Concept Plan for the project. A collaborative and consensus building approach will be front and centre throughout the community consultation exercise. The goal is to build trust, ensure that each participating resident has the chance to be heard and that we are able to reach positive outcomes. A variety of resident engagement methods will be used to maximize participation in light of the restrictions imposed at the present time with COVID-19.
What other community improvements are being considered in this redevelopment exercise?
It is proposed that the redeveloped community would feature a neighborhood centre location on the northern parcels allowing for local retail and service uses such as a coffee shop, small shops and personal service outlets. A review of the geography of the property will identify opportunities to explore the creation of new parks, playgrounds and open spaces while protecting mature trees. To support healthy living and safer areas, improved and well-lit pathways will be featured to connect the existing pathway network in the area.
Where is MPM currently in this process and what does the process entail?
MPM is really at the infancy stage of the process to redevelop their lands. The land has been surveyed to provide an accurate picture of size and topography. Studies are now complete with respect to an analysis of existing natural conditions; the adequacy of the street networks; and an examination of the water and sanitary systems, the capacity of stormwater and the existing open space network. Planners, urban designers and landscape architects have studied all aspects of the property in order to access its potential for redevelopment. These studies along with an application with the City of Ottawa for an Official Plan Amendment (OPA) have been filed with City staff. The requested amendments to the Official Plan (OPA) and Re-zoning By-law (RBLA) will create opportunities for new amenities and housing types to meet the needs of the existing and future tenants in the years to come.
Has MPM established a schedule yet for detailed design and construction?
No. A schedule for detailed design and construction has not yet been established to allow time for feedback on the Official Plan Amendment (OPA) as well as the Re-zoning By-law Amendment (ZBLA). The intent is to explore and establish the broad directions for the redevelopment of the 35 acres of land that make up the Estates.
What is the redevelopment timeline expected to be if the Official Plan Amendment (OPA) goes forward and what are the next steps?
The entire redevelopment is a 25 year+ project. In July 2020, a formal pre-consultation meeting was held with City of Ottawa staff and community representatives. While the OPA is being reviewed by City staff, MPM will conduct consultation meetings with the existing tenants of Manor Park Estates. In fact, every family that presently resides in the Estates is being contacted by telephone to make known MPM’s intentions for redevelopment and are being asked what new amenities and installations would they like to see in the future to improve the lands. Community engagement with the broader community will take place later in 2021. From these consultation meetings, community comments will be incorporated into a “What We Heard Document”.
Will MPM build predominately rentals or condos? Will some land be sold off?
It is too early in the planning process to address this question specifically. MPM is first and foremost a property management company so it is anticipated that most of the redeveloped units will be for rental purposes. These units will vary in size and form from low-rise to high-rise and be available at affordable and market driven rates.
What are the proposed next steps in the process?
- Contact and consultation with each existing family residing in the Estates.
- Consultation with the broader community by Manor Park Management.
- Through the review development applications process, the OPA will be made available to all stakeholders for review.
- Following the circulation and comment review period, City of Ottawa Staff will respond to MPM with a letter outlining issues to be addressed.
See Next Steps