1996 Carleton Heights secondary plan covers part of Fisher Heights

There was an error in the story regarding the proposed redevelopment of 780 Baseline Road, the so-called Lone Star Plasa.

The original story stated: “The current Official Plan allows buildings up to 30 storeys [on the site]; the new OP allows buildings up to 40 storeys.”

That sentence ignored the existence of a 1996 secondary plan for Carleton Heights. The story now reads:

The city claims that the current Official Plan allows buildings up to 30 storeys; the new OP allows buildings up to 40 storeys,

Secondary plan for Carleton Heights

However, a secondary plan for Carleton Heights (between Fisher and the Rideau Canal-River, south of Baseline), outlining detailed land uses, was approved in 1996. Before amalgamation in 2000, the Ottawa-Nepean border ran along the rear property lines of the houses on the west side of Fisher and the south side of Baseline. Hence part of the site was in Carleton Heights and was included in the secondary plan. This is the rationale behind the some what strange idea that land west of Fisher Ave falls under the Carleton Heights secondary plan.

The area was identified as a minor shopping area with residential of “medium” density, namely predominantly row housing from 150 to 248 persons per hectare, and apartment buildings from 248 to 300 persons per hectare, “subject to certain height restrictions.”

This designation extended along Baseline to Marson, the first intersection west of Farlane.

The project seeks to build 875 apartment units. Assuming for an example that each apartment will house 2 people, that density is 1,225 persons per hectare.

During preliminary discussions the city considered that this secondary plan applied to the project. Subsequently, however, according to the city planner on the file, Laurel McCreight, the city’s “Policy Team” determined that “an Official Plan Amendment [regarding the Carleton Heights secondary plan] is not required.”  That decision was “based on some text amendments to the Secondary Plan that is being carried over into the New OP. There is wording in the Secondary Plan that states that mid and high-rise buildings are permitted subject to an appropriate transition.  This transition must be demonstrated in the zoning by-law materials.”

Therefore, the city’s position is that the 30/40-storey height limits apply.

The correction will also be noted in the next issue of the newsletter.