Committee Recommendation


That Council approve and adopt an amendment into the Official Plan to incorporate the North Gower Secondary Plan into the Official Plan as detailed in Document 2.



Recommandation du comité


Que le Conseil approuve et adopte une modification au Plan officiel visant à incorporer le Plan secondaire de North Gower au Plan officiel, comme le précise le document 2.








1.         Deputy City Manager's report (Planning, Transit and the Environment) dated
24 June 2008 (ACS2008-PTE-PLA-0127).





Report to/Rapport au :



Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee

Comité d'agriculture et des questions rurales


and Council/et au Conseil


24 June 2008 / le 24 juin 2008


Submitted by/Soumis par Nancy Schepers, Deputy City Manager/

Directrice municipale adjointe,

Planning, Transit and the Environment/

Urbanisme, Transport en commun et Environnement


Contact Person/Personne Ressource : Richard Kilstrom, Manager / Gestionnaire, Community Planning and Design / Approbation des demandes d'aménagement, Planning Brancy/Direction de l'urbanisme

(613) 580-2424, 13242  Richard.Kilstrom@ottawa.ca


Rideau-Goulbourn (21)

Ref N°: ACS2008-PTE-PLA-0127




OFFICIAL PLAN AMENDMENT - North Gower Secondary Plan (FILE NO. [D01-01-08-0002])









That the  recommend Council  approve and adopt an amendment to the Official Plan to incorporate the North Gower Secondary Plan into the Official Plan as detailed in Document 2.




Que le Comité de l’agriculture et des questions rurales recommande au Conseil d’approuver et d’adopter une modification au Plan officiel visant à incorporer le Plan secondaire de North Gower au Plan officiel, comme le précise le document 2.





On January 23, 2008 City Council approved the North Gower Community Design Plan (CDP) and associated Official Plan and Zoning By-law Amendments after a collaborative planning process.  This involved obtaining ideas and feedback from residents regarding the type of village they want in the future. 


Other amendments approved by City Council in the above approval have been implemented or are in the process of being implemented.  Since there were no appeals regarding the Official Plan Amendment to expand North Gower’s boundaries and to remove the North Gower Village Plan from the Official Plan Volume 2C, changes have been undertaken.  Zoning changes approved by City Council to implement the North Gower CDP have been incorporated in the final version of the Draft Comprehensive Zoning By-law that is expected to be adopted by Council on June 25, 2008 and posted for statutory notice. 


In its January approval of the North Gower CDP, City Council also directed “that the North Gower Community Design Plan be brought back to Committee in a Secondary Plan format and be incorporated in the Official Plan”.   An Official Plan Amendment was therefore initiated in accordance with City Council direction, which has resulted in this report.





In accordance with City Council’s motion to incorporate the CDP as a Secondary Plan in the Official Plan, staff initiated an Official Plan Amendment process that would essentially organize the North Gower CDP into a format that would be suitable for incorporation into Volume 2C – Village Plans of the Official Plan.




The Official Plan Amendment is recommended for approval since it essentially takes the City Council-approved North Gower CDP and adds those elements to the Official Plan that are essential to consider in future land-use planning decisions.  Those components of the Secondary Plan include:  i) vision, goals and objectives, ii) a land-use plan that identifies the proposed location of land-uses and associated policies, iii) a parks and open space plan and associated policies that will assist staff and developers in identifying future park locations as part of the subdivision approval process, iv) a multi-use pathway plan, v) proposals for the Village Centre vi) a future roads plan that will help to connect the village, and vii) an implementation component (see Document 2 – PART B – THE AMENDMENT).


These elements of the Secondary Plan have been taken from the North Gower CDP.  Minor changes were made as a result of public circulation of the draft amendment.  These are described in Document 3 – Consultation Details. 


In summary, this amendment will add the North Gower Secondary Plan to the Official Plan Volume 2C- Village Plans.





This Official Plan Amendment provides Official Plan policies to direct growth in the village of North Gower. 





Notice of this application was carried out in accordance with the City's Public Notification and Consultation Policy.  The Ward Councillor is aware of this Official Plan Amendment and the staff recommendation.


Comments from the public dealt with matters of clarification and editorial suggestions.  Detailed responses to the notification/circulation are provided in Document 3.




There are no immediate financial implications associated with this report.  Any future infrastructure requirements would be subject to an update to the LRFP or inclusion in future capital budgets.





Document 1      Location Map

Document 2      Proposed Official Plan Amendment

Document 3      Consultation Details





City Clerk’s Branch, Council and Committee Services to notify Ghislain Lamarche, Program Manager, Assessment, Financial Services Branch (Mail Code:  26-76) of City Council’s decision.


Planning, Transit and the Environment Department to: 

i)                    prepare the by-law adopting the Official Plan Amendment, forward to Legal Services Branch, and undertake the statutory notification and

ii)                   ii) revise Annex 7 Official Plan Rural Village Plans, to include a Secondary Plan for North Gower, upon final adoption of this Official Plan Amendment.


Legal Services Branch to forward the implementing by-law to City Council.


LOCATION MAP                                                                                                  DOCUMENT 1


PROPOSED OFFICIAL PLAN AMENDMENT                                                 DOCUMENT 2











Official Plan Amendment ___/

Modification du Plan directeur __


to the


Official Plan for the City of Ottawa





















Official Plan Amendment

Official Plan for the City of Ottawa




The Statement of Components


Part A – The Preamble








Part B – The Amendment




            Details of the Amendment




Part C – The Appendices





The Statement of Components

Part A – The Preamble, introduces the actual Amendment but does not constitute part of the Amendment No. ___ to the City of Ottawa.


Part B – The Amendment, consisting of the following text and schedules constitutes the actual Amendment No. __ to the Official Plan for the City of Ottawa.


Part C – The Appendices, does not form part of the Amendment but is provided to clarify the intent and to supply background information related to the Amendment.




Table of Contents


1.0     Purpose ………………………………………….


2.0     Location …………………………………………


3.0     Basis …………………………………………….


3.1     Collaborative Planning Process …………

3.2     Historical Roots …………………………

3.3     Population ………………………………

3.4     Village Character ……………………….

3.5     Planning Context ……………………….

3.6     Strategic Directions …………………….


3.6.1        Growth Management ………...

3.6.2        Village Character …………….

3.6.3        Infrastructure …………………




1.0    PURPOSE


The purpose of Amendment __ is to add the North Gower Secondary Plan to the Official Plan.  The North Gower Secondary Plan is based on the North Gower Community Design Plan (CDP) approved by City Council on January 23, 2008.  The Secondary Plan will provide greater planning detail than is found in the Official Plan on matters such as land-use, stormwater and environmental management, design and roads.




The lands affected by Amendment___ include all the lands located within North Gower’s village boundaries.   Several areas adjacent to the village boundaries were recommended to be brought into the village as a result of the North Gower CDP through an Official Plan Amendment.  This proposed expansion received final City Council approval on January 23, 2008.



3.0    BASIS


3.1  Collaborative Planning Process

This Official Plan Amendment (OPA) reflects the strong direction set in the North Gower CDP by residents with technical and research support provided by City of Ottawa staff.    During the planning process, staff developed a collaborative process that built on the work that had already been undertaken by residents (the Design Group), who initiated preparation of a plan for their village.  This process included information gathering and analysis by staff, meetings with the Design Group, and public consultations, which ultimately led to City Council approval of the North Gower CDP and further direction that a Secondary Plan to be prepared based on the approved plan. 


Summarized below are some of the information-gathering activities and public consultations that took place during preparation of the North Gower CDP.


Information gathering


·        Assessing available studies and data (i.e.: lot creation in the village) and initiating new work (i.e.: groundwater study, parks and open space plan)

·        Identification and confirmation of village issues

·        Assembly of heritage building and farming practices information by Design Group members




·        Two public meetings (June 2003 and March 2004) organized by the Design Group to obtain feedback on the “vision” for North Gower and the draft plan prepared by the group.

·        Five presentations by planning and technical staff to the Design Group focused on planning policy and zoning, Rideau Valley Conservation Authority policies and practices, results of the groundwater study, natural systems in the village, and heritage buildings.

·        A public workshop in June 2005, to present findings to date and to obtain feedback on the goals and objectives set for the Plan.

·        A public meeting/open house in June 2006 to present the recommendations of the draft plan, including a park and multi-use pathway plan.

·        A final public meeting/open house in January 2007 to present a revised plan based on public comments.

·        A summary of public comments sent to residents on mailing list (April 2007) and a follow-up letter to the same outlining list of final changes to North Gower CDP (October 2007).

·        Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee meeting on January 10, 2008 and approval by City Council on January 23, 2008.


3.2   Historical Roots


North Gower’s historical roots extend back to the time of the original survey of the Township of North Gower, undertaken in 1791 by John Stegmann. The lots and concessions were surveyed in 1820. The same year, Stephen Blanchard, a lumberman, located the site of the present village. In 1823 a Methodist preacher, Peter Jones, and his wife, Anna Eastman, settled on Lot 18, Concession 4 and established a school and church in their log shanty home. Other Eastmans, the John Thomson family, Richard Pettapiece, William McEwan and several more pioneers followed. The Callenders, Wallaces, Dillons and Craigs arrived in the 1830s and the Moffats, Carsons and more Craigs in 1840.

By 1864, there were numerous residents providing a wide range of services to fellow villagers, which created a busy and active village.  There were general stores (five), blacksmiths (five), shoemakers (five), hotel owners (two) and other useful trades of the day. It is the Design Group’s desire to once again have an active commercial area in the village. 


3.3  Population


With an estimated population of 1,750 in 2004, North Gower ranks in the top one-third of the 26 villages in Ottawa in terms of size.  Over the last 25 years (1975 – 2000), the number of dwellings in the village has more than doubled and was estimated at 574 in 2003. However, village growth in the former Rideau Township southwest of the urban area is dominated by Manotick - the largest village in Ottawa at a population of 5,200 in 2004 — while Richmond vies with Greely as the second largest village in Ottawa with a population of 4,330 (City of Ottawa Data Handbook, 2004). 

The village offers a wide array of services including a nursery school and recreational programs at the Alfred Taylor Recreation Centre, library, school, bowling lanes and archery lessons on Fourth Line Road, a seniors retirement home, repair services, post office, bank, library, school and convenience stores  (see Map 2 – 2000 Land-use).


While there are no recent or reliable data on where North Gower residents work, their proximity to Highway 416 provides good access to workplaces throughout the rest of the city. The 2001 census found that throughout the rural area of Ottawa, 28 per cent of residents work in the rural area and another 60 per cent work within the urban area. The rest have no fixed place of work, or work outside Ottawa (City of Ottawa Data Handbook, 2004).



3.4   Village Character


Much of the village character is set by North Gower’s historic settlement, with many of its original houses still intact. Clustered within the Village Centre (core), North Gower’s heritage settlement demonstrates its unique character and defines the village for its inhabitants and visitors alike. 


The Village Centre is also the social and commercial focus of North Gower. The mix of small-scale commercial and recreational facilities and mixed-use buildings defines North Gower as an active rural community. Collectively, they provide the village with a focus by providing some basic services.


Historically and today, Fourth Line Road is North Gower’s main street and offers a mix of businesses, public uses, and residences. Businesses include hair salons, restaurants, an auto service centre, an antique store and repair businesses. Public buildings include the North Gower Branch of the Ottawa Public Library and the Rideau Archives. 


Five streets radiate in a star-shaped pattern from the core and each offers a mix of services and residences. For example, Roger Stevens Drive, connecting the centre of the village to Highway 416, includes a lumber yard and builders’ retail centre in the core, a farm supply store, a country market, a newly expanded fire station, a former township building used now as a meeting place, and a seniors’ residence.


Growth of the village has progressed outward from the core along the main roads. Beyond the Village Centre, several residential subdivisions provide primarily single-detached homes that are privately serviced. The subdivisions are developed as cul-de-sacs and P-loops off the main roads that define the village, with small parks in some areas. 


The subdivisions are separated from each other and the rest of the village by large expanses of vacant land. About two-thirds of the land within the village is open and actively used for agriculture, including land within the flood plain of Stevens Creek.  Families who have lived in North Gower for generations continue to farm within and around the village, even as it has grown around them. Cash crops such as soy beans, corn, wheat and barley are grown within the village, while dairy and livestock operations continue within and adjacent to the village. The Design Group of North Gower prepared an agricultural census, which is found in Appendix 1.  It lists at least seven active farms within the village boundaries. 


3.5   Planning Context

The Official Plan provides a broad context for development in North Gower and other rural communities. The Plan proposes that Ottawa’s villages be the focus of rural growth because villages provide residents with the best access to services. As well, focusing growth in villages results in the least impact on the rural area, in terms of impacts on agricultural land and resource development. The Plan sets criteria for an expansion of village boundaries, including the availability of land for development within the village and the effect of the expansion on agricultural land or other resource land.


Most of the land surrounding North Gower is designated Agricultural Resource, where only agricultural uses are permitted. The policies in the Plan are designed to protect these lands from loss to other uses and ensure that other uses that conflict with agricultural practices are not established in the area.

In 2000, North Gower’s existing land-uses (see Map 2) show that vacant lands, predominantly agricultural lands outside the floodplain, represent about 65 per cent of all lands within the village. About 19 per cent of lands are used for low-density residential uses. Paved roads represent almost 7 per cent of land-uses while commercial, industrial and institutional uses account for just over 2 per cent of all land-uses. 


Other policies in the Official Plan set broad directions that affect many aspects of growth in North Gower, such as review of development applications and policies on servicing. The Community Design Plan works with all of the Official Plan policies to guide City Council, staff, and the community on decisions on development proposals and public spending.



3.6  Strategic Directions


The three over-arching goals of the CDP raise issues and set strategic directions. The goals are discussed in this section:



   Growth Management

            Goal:  To manage growth in North Gower in an orderly way that fosters                                    economic opportunities while providing for a mix of housing for                          residents recognizing its rural setting.


   Village Character

            Goal:    To preserve and enhance the village’s natural features, historic                           character, open spaces and amenities in order to build upon                                           residents’ sense of community.


   Public Services

   Goal:  To ensure that village residents’ safety and security is provided for                         and that there is adequate infrastructure services to service growth.





3.6.1 Growth Management



         Goal:       To manage growth in North Gower in an orderly way that fosters                                  economic opportunities and recognizes its rural setting while  

                        providing for a mix of housing for residents.




Growth potential


The large supply of vacant land within the boundaries of North Gower provides considerable opportunity for future growth. There are about 278 hectares of vacant land available for development within North Gower's village boundaries. This figure excludes the Stevens Creek floodplain and is based on complete floodplain mapping within the village provided by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority. This supply roughly translates into a potential for over 520 new residential lots, assuming three-quarters of the land is available for housing (and not used for roads or parks) and the average lot size is 0.4 hectares (one acre). 


The village has enough land to more than double the number of dwelling units as the land that is now farmed becomes available for development.  


The future rate of growth in North Gower is difficult to estimate. Building permits and lot creation in the past help track historic trends, although the data is not good. Since 2001, building permits have been issued at an average rate of about 10 permits per year. Lot creation suggests a slightly higher level of historic growth, with an average of about 12 lots per year created in the 1975 to 2003 period. At these rates, the land supply could last over 50 years.  


North Gower - Building Permits Issued 1995-mid 2004


53 (10 per year)












54 (10.8 per year)


However, future growth will be set by market demand and the decisions of individual landowners, as it has been in the past. Reviewing trends in lot creation in the former Rideau Township, the period between 1991 and 2001 was marked by low levels of lot creation throughout the Township’s villages, with three or fewer lots created in Manotick, Kars, and North Gower combined in most years. Lot creation has increased since 2002, likely spurred by approval of new subdivisions within North Gower and Manotick. With all its advantages, North Gower may experience more rapid growth in the future than in the past.


This plan can help achieve the following:


·        Provide clear direction to City Council on future zoning and the development review process

·        Extend the boundary of the planning area to include nearby settlements and the land adjacent to Highway 416

·        Provide for physical connections among all the communities within the planning area



Economic Opportunities


The Ottawa Retail Report 2005 notes that North Gower acts as a secondary retail centre for the rural southwest area of the city. More than 60 businesses operate in and around North Gower. In 2005, the North Gower and Area Business Association made its presence known on the worldwide web. 


Area residents would like to see more businesses, services and amenities located in the Village Centre that serves their everyday needs and the needs of the adjacent farming community. It has been noted that the number of businesses that serve residents’ needs is tied to North Gower’s small population.     


Perkins Lumber, which occupies a prominent site in the core, may move to a new location nearby. Residents want to make sure that the vacant site redevelops in a way that complements the historic character of the core. 


A study of the commercial and retail growth potential of Ottawa’s rural communities[1] recommended:


·        The need to define and implement initiatives to conserve and enhance rural and small town character

·        A need for promotion and marketing


The Design Group has interest in reviewing this study in further detail. 


The Plan can support economic development by creating a framework for new development. More specifically, economic development can be supported by:


·        Permitting a range of commercial uses in the zoning and land-use plan for the core

·        Developing guidelines for Village Centre development that preserve its heritage character and its function as the commercial centre of the village

·        Developing guidelines for development of land at the Highway 416 interchange, consistent with planning policies now in place for those lands and the role of the Village Centre



Housing for Everyone

Most housing in North Gower is in the form of single-detached homes. There are few other forms of housing, with the notable exception of the municipal seniors residence on Roger Stevens Drive. Some residents would like to see a wider range of housing types, including apartments and more housing designed for seniors, which would allow more opportunity for families to grow and age in the community.


There are many reasons that single-detached houses predominate in North Gower and other villages. The primary reason is that most people who move to villages prefer this form of housing and are seeking the opportunity to build their own house.


Servicing is also an issue, since new development in North Gower is serviced on private well and septic systems. Such systems will constrain the housing options available in the future. Residents feel that the lack of some form of public servicing limits the growth potential of the village.


It was possible to build two to five units under a single ownership on private services under the former provisions of the Environmental Protection Act.  Current legislation requires servicing for more than one unit to be under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of the Environment.  It is not permitted as a right.


Secondary dwelling units also open opportunities for a greater range of housing in North Gower. In 2005, City Council approved the development of secondary dwelling units in all areas of the city, including villages. Secondary dwelling units are self-contained units that have their own kitchen and bathroom and meet other requirements set for such units. They can be built within existing houses or they can be planned from the outset to be included in new houses.


This Plan can support a greater range of housing in North Gower by:


·           Supporting zoning provisions that permit a range of housing types in the centre of the village

·           Indicating support for a wider range of housing types to be provided in the future.



Village Boundary Expansion


Residents of North Gower are keenly interested in participating in managing growth in the years ahead. A request was made by the Design Group to consider expanding the village boundaries in four locations in order to include clusters of residences located just outside the village boundary.  The intent of the request is multi-fold: to include those areas that residents already feel are part of the village, to rationalize a boundary since concerns about being included in the village no longer exist, and to incorporate additional sections of Stevens Creek for future enjoyment of residents.


These proposed expansions areas include: the Stratton subdivision located to the north of the village (General Rural Area Official Plan designation - 7.8 ha development land), the lands located east of McCordick Road and south of Roger Stevens Drive to the current western village boundary (Agricultural Resource Area Official Plan designation – 24.9 ha development land), the lands located west of Third Line Road to the current eastern village limits (Agricultural Resource Area Official Plan designation – 27.1 ha development land) and the Cowell lands located adjacent to the Maple Forest neighbourhood (Agricultural Resource Area designation – approx. 10 ha development land).


Currently, there are about 278 hectares of development land within the village, excluding lands located within the floodplain, which could take about 50 years to build out.  A sizeable amount of development would be brought into the village through this proposed expansion, resulting in a loss of almost 70 hectares of land – the majority of which is recognized as prime farmland. This would increase the vacant land supply in the village by about 20 per cent.  Therefore, this proposal is considered to provide more land than is required for the planning period.


However, it is proposed that village expansion can occur in certain areas of the village without increasing the vacant land supply in a significant way (see Map 3).  Several questions guided the revised boundary locations throughout the village:  Is there existing development adjacent to the village boundary?  Have lands already been approved for development?  Is there an impact of a boundary change on supply of agricultural lands?


            Lands east of Client Service Centre/Works Yard

On the north side of Roger Stevens the village boundary will extend to include six contiguous properties to the east of the city’s works yard.  These lots have been developed or are anticipated to-be-built upon at a future date.  Some have been developed for homes, a veterinary clinic occupies another lot and the others are vacant.  No agricultural lands will be affected.  These lands are currently designated “Agricultural Resource Area” in the Official Plan.


            Lands at intersection of Highway 416 and Roger Stevens Drive

The lands on the south side of Roger Stevens to the east of Third Line Road have been approved for future development.  An industrial subdivision was approved in the early 2000s, followed by the creation of ten residential lots fronting on Third Line Road.  It is proposed that the village boundaries be expanded to include these lands since there is no impact on surrounding agricultural lands.    These lands are designated “General Rural Area” in the Official Plan.


            Lands between McCordick Road and west of existing village boundary

            On the south side of Church Street there are four existing homes that are located close to the village boundary.  These will be brought into the village since these lands are already developed.  The properties bounded by McCordick Road, Church Street and Stevens Creek, which will form the new northern boundary in this area, will also be brought into the village.  Homes occupy these lands and there is little “development land” that will remain once the existing floodplain lands are taken into consideration.  These lands are designated “Agricultural Resource Area” in the Official Plan. Approximately 29.4 ha (40 acres) of land  (residentially developed lands, flood plain and potential development lands) would be brought into the village as a result of the village expansion.  The majority of the land is already developed for residential purposes, with about 4.7 ha (11 acres) of land remaining that is developable.    


North boundary (Stratton subdivision)

These lands are designated as General Rural Area in the Official Plan and are acknowledged to have less agricultural potential than the majority of lands that surround North Gower.  As a result of feedback from residents from this area, this area will not be part of the village boundary expansion.


As a result, an Official Plan Amendment was adopted by Council to i) expand the village boundary east of the Client Service Centre, at Roger Stevens Drive and Highway 416 and at McCordick Road and Roger Stevens Drive and to re-designate lands from “General Rural Area” and “Agricultural Resource Area” to “Village”.  This amendment has received final approval.



3.6.2 Village Character



Goal:    To preserve and enhance the village’s natural features, historic character,                       open spaces and amenities in order to build upon residents’ sense of      community.



Stevens Creek and Floodplain

Stevens Creek and its flood plain contribute a great deal to the open, green character of North Gower, and are highly valued by area residents. Stevens Creek meanders through North Gower and the creek, its tributaries, the Taylor Municipal Drain and the Dillon-Wallace Drain, drain all land within the village. These agricultural drains have little riparian vegetation and both exhibit signs of erosion. The source of Stevens Creek is in the Marlborough Forest, a provincially significant wetland and natural environment area west of North Gower, and the creek discharges into the Rideau River at the village of Kars less than five kilometres to the east. 


Stevens Creek ranges in width from five to 20 metres. The banks of the creek and parts of the surrounding floodplain are highly vegetated, with the flood plain ranging from 300 metres to over 600 metres in width (Gore and Storrie, 1995). In addition, Stevens Creek has unstable slopes, which have been identified in the Official Plan. The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority has updated the floodplain mapping, with the new mapping to be reflected in the new zoning for the village. 


Water quality upstream of the village is good but it deteriorates as the creek passes through the village. Downstream, water quality is impaired due to elevated phosphorus and sediment levels, which may be attributed to surrounding clay soils, erosion due to removal of bank vegetation, and agricultural practices (City of Ottawa, 2004). It is not possible to determine the specific cause of water deterioration at this time with the information available. 


A dam on Stevens Creek is in need of repair or removal. Construction of the dam may have blocked one spawning ground in the upper reaches of Stevens Creek, and several organizations have expressed interest in rehabilitating this area (C.Burns 2002).  Residents have indicated that they wish to see the dam removed.


Apart from Stevens Creek, there are few natural areas in North Gower because most of the land is cultivated. Residents highly value a large, high-quality woodlot just outside the southern boundary of the village, which consists predominantly of native mature trees, shrubs and herbs (Gore and Storrie, 1995).


As a general approach, the Official Plan supports watershed and subwatershed planning as the basis for managing growth throughout the city. By identifying the natural features and functions of the watershed or subwatershed, the plans can propose measures to enhance these elements and set parameters for future development. The City and the conservation authorities set priority areas for watershed and subwatershed plans on the basis of such criteria as development pressure and condition of the natural environment.


The Rideau Valley Conservation Authority completed the Lower Rideau Watershed Strategy in fall 2005. The strategy applied an eco-system approach to develop a set of strategies for achieving multiple objectives in the management of the Lower Rideau River and its corridor, and updated the corresponding policies and procedures. Stevens Creek is a tributary to the Lower Rideau River, and as such, was considered in this study. 


A subwatershed study of Stevens Creek would provide the best understanding of the role of Stevens Creek in the larger Rideau River watershed, the impact of existing and future land-use activities on the natural features and functions, and recommended measures to effectively address these impacts. The study would also refine the corridor setbacks for Stevens Creek and its tributaries, and ultimately set guidelines for managing stormwater. A subwatershed study would need to be consistent with the Lower Rideau Watershed Strategy.


Until a subwatershed study is undertaken, the environmental health of Stevens Creek and its floodplain can be supported by:


·        Delineating the area to be zoned as floodplain, based on updated mapping by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority

·        Encouraging the restoration of the natural vegetation along the creek and tributaries to improve wildlife corridor function and water quality

·        Ensuring that the presence of steep slopes along the creek is considered, through the development review process and private landowner stewardship

·        Proposing interim guidelines for stormwater management in accordance with the Stormwater Management Practices Planning and Design Manual (MOE, 2003), pending completion of a subwatershed study

·        Consulting the Lower Rideau Watershed Strategy in review of future planning applications

·        Establishing development setbacks/buffers in accordance with policies contained in Section 4.7.3 of the Official Plan


Parks and Open Spaces


Stevens Creek is the backbone of an open space system that residents would like to see developed to connect their homes with open spaces and recreation facilities within and outside the village. A system of informal pathways on privately owned land now provides much of this function, but public access may be difficult to maintain as the village grows. The land within and adjacent to Stevens Creek and its flood plain is privately owned and it will be challenging to secure continuous public access through this area.  In the future the City will secure public access along the shoreline in accordance with Section 4.6.3 policy 2 of the Official Plan.


North Gower has a considerable number of private open spaces, large open areas under private ownership, and public parks (see Appendix 3). Parks are well situated throughout the village. New parks are typically created through the land subdivision process, which requires developers to provide five per cent of the land subject to the application or its cash value as parkland dedication. The parkland dedication requirements are under review. 


Public open space in North Gower includes undeveloped parks and parks with basketball courts, play structures and other equipment. Additional recreation areas are located at the North Gower Public School and a municipally-owned bowling alley. 


The Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility, built on a 16-acre site 20 years ago, is the focus of recreational activities. The centre includes a community hall, outdoor rink, baseball diamonds, a toddler playground, soccer pitches, a mountain for winter activities, and tennis courts. Various clubs, baseball leagues, and organizations for tournaments and fund-raising events extensively use the site.


This Recreation Facility has a building manager, although a volunteer recreation association (RA) manages its active and passive facilities under the terms of a facility service and maintenance agreement with the City of Ottawa. The RA provides a community-driven venue for residents of all age groups to develop and support outdoor and indoor recreation, and arts and cultural activities and programs. A master plan for the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility was prepared in 1994 by Corush Sunderland Wright Limited.  

Cultural open spaces in the village include the Horace Seabrook Park, the now-closed Union Cemetery, the oldest in the village, and the Anglican Church cemetery located on Church Street. A small cenotaph established by the residents of North Gower is located within the Village Centre. 


The Official Plan supports development of rural recreational pathways to provide both on-road and off-road networks for pedestrians and cyclists. North Gower residents participated in a rural pathway study in 2005. 

A parks and open space system can be supported by:

·       Undertaking a park and open space plan incorporating existing parks, open spaces, pathways and amenities as well as proposing a future network

·       Identifying a conceptual multi-use pathway system within the parks and open space plan, to guide City staff in evaluation of development applications, such as subdivisions, so that these pathways can be implemented and become part of an overall public system over time



Conserving and Promoting Heritage Resources


North Gower residents appreciate the history of their community and would like to maintain and share their heritage with others. The Local Architectural Conservation Advisory Committee (LACAC) of the former Township of Rideau created an inventory of historic buildings in 1990. Some of these buildings are designated while others were of “interest” to LACAC. It is thought that the oldest surviving buildings date from about 1850 to 1870, and many are located along Church Street, Fourth Line Road and Roger Stevens Drive. 

Commercial buildings with heritage value include Harrison's Garage on Fourth Line Road, the old barns used by the Farmer's Market, and the former bank and tailor shop, now rental apartments. The Boyd Block building material was used extensively in the village and a list of 26 buildings constructed from this material has been compiled. Other building materials that characterize the village are "tin" roof shingles manufactured by Mr. Hagan and Mr. Mathews in the village and clay brick from the North Gower brick factory. 

The Rideau Archives Branch, City of Ottawa Archives, occupies the first township hall, a heritage building (1876), modified to provide suitable archival storage and display space. The Archives has preserved and made available historical records, which document local communities, institutions, professions and pioneer families in and around North Gower. As well, the Archives mounts exhibitions on local historical themes using both its records and historical artefacts from within the community. 


As of August 2005, the City’s Heritage Reference List identified six buildings that have been designated as heritage buildings and another 48 “listed” buildings, which are of architectural interest (see Appendix 2). Designated buildings undergoing alterations follow a process to ensure that proposed changes do not affect the heritage attributes of a building. Municipal grants are only available for designated heritage buildings to assist in their maintenance.


This Plan can help conserve and promote heritage resources by:


·        Identifying additional buildings which are of heritage interest and adding these to Ottawa’s Heritage Reference List

·        Developing design guidelines for new and infill development within the Village Centre so that new buildings and additions are compatible with the existing character of the Village Centre



Building sense of community


Residents’ sense of community draws on many sources, some of which come from the village itself: its heritage, its lush rural setting, views within and outside the boundaries. As the village grows, the community design plan can provide a framework so that the village does not become a collection of new subdivisions around an historic core. Since the vacant land is now held in large blocks under single ownership, it is likely that most growth will occur through subdivision, rather than by severance of individual lots.


Residents’ sense of community can be supported through:


·        The creation of residential subdivision guidelines appropriate for the village, that foster safe pedestrian and road connections among communities, preserve open space views, and provide opportunities for residents to meet in attractive public spaces



3.6.3 Infrastructure



Goal:  To ensure that village residents’ safety and security is provided for             and that there is adequate infrastructure services to permit growth. 



Water and Wastewater


All homes and businesses in North Gower are served through individual wells and septic systems.  In North Gower 45 per cent of the wastewater systems are 25 years or older, 45 per cent of the existing lots are .2 ha or smaller, and approximately 20 per cent of existing lots are partially within the floodplain. 


Given the age of the community and the size of existing lots, the City undertook a further study of the supply of groundwater in North Gower, which provides the village’s drinking water. The Village of North Gower Groundwater Study prepared by Dillon found that a bedrock aquifer that supplies water to North Gower is capable of supplying adequate amounts of potable water for residential, dry-commercial and dry-industrial developments. The study concluded that North Gower is well suited for development on wells and septic systems. The study noted:


·        The water is of good quality, but mineralized (hard water) with some sulphur smells            being identified by residents

·        There is good water supply and it is sufficient to support further development on wells and septic systems

·        There are no widespread septic system impacts on wells

·        There are no widespread agricultural impacts on groundwater within the village

·        No obvious road salt contamination was evident on the sampling results


Area residents have been concerned that the small lot size within the older parts of the village has been the primary roadblock to further development there. More than half the lots in the core are 0.2 ha or less and special attention is needed in the design of replacement septic systems. Some area residents consider that other types of water and or wastewater services in the village would serve to eliminate this roadblock. 


The Official Plan provides for the establishment of new public services based on consideration of growth planning needs, public health, environmental areas and economic development. However, recent studies in other villages in the City have demonstrated that the up-front costs of such systems (either through new stand-alone systems or extension of central systems) are prohibitive, in particular to existing residents who would connect to a new system. The Official Plan places emphasis on continued growth in the rural environment based on private services since such development is economical and environmentally sustainable when properly planned. Increasingly, new technologies for on-site water treatment and wastewater treatment are facilitating re-development of small existing lots.


The Plan can support provision of safe water and wastewater services in the village by:


·        Informing City staff, the community and developers about the North Gower Groundwater Study, so that it can be consulted as a resource during the development review process


Stormwater Management


The North Gower Master Drainage Plan (Gore and Storrie Limited, 1995) requires updating as it does not reflect changes to stormwater management guidelines at both the provincial and local levels. This includes the release of the Ministry of the Environment's updated Stormwater Management Planning and Design Manual (March 2003) and the completion of the Lower Rideau River Watershed Strategy (September 2005).   A coordinated, comprehensive approach is recommended to address the impacts of future development rather than piecemeal efforts applied on an application-by-application basis.  


A subwatershed study for Stevens Creek would provide the best basis for planning in North Gower. It would determine the environmental state of the subwatershed and identify impacts of existing and future land practices and uses on the health of the subwatershed. The study would identify appropriate management approaches to ensure the continued good health of the subwatershed, including a stormwater management strategy to mitigate the impacts of new development. 


An alternative, less desirable approach, would be a scoped ‘reach study’ of Stevens Creek downstream of the village. Since North Gower is located near the downstream end of the subwatershed, the impact of village development could be limited to a relatively short downstream reach. This study would still require appropriate modeling efforts to confirm stormwater management (SWM) criteria (quality, quantity, erosion, water balance, etc.) and to confirm overall development limits (setbacks from watercourses, etc.).  Such a scoped approach, completed for the whole village (rather than on a development-by-development basis) and on a reach basis (i.e., assessing impacts downstream to the confluence with the Rideau River), would represent an acceptable interim approach in the absence of a subwatershed study. Subject to the extent (area) of development proceeding, and in consultation with the Conservation Authority, the scoped “reach study” may be requested of future development proponent(s). 


A reach study of Stevens Creek and a subwatershed study will be prioritized among other such projects for future action by the City. As an interim approach, stormwater management guidelines are proposed.


Roads and Sidewalks

There are three arterial roadways  (Prince of Wales Drive, Fourth Line Road, Roger Stevens Drive) and two collector roads (Church Street and Third Line Road) in North Gower. No new arterial or collector roads have been proposed for the village. On-street parking is allowed and some businesses have their own parking lots; however, several residents would like the city to develop municipal parking facilities in the Village Centre. 


Fourth Line Road (Prince of Wales Drive to Shellstar Drive) and Roger Stevens Drive were resurfaced recently. Two bridge rehabilitations occurred in 2005:  at the north end of Fourth Line Road and on Roger Stevens Drive just east of the traffic light.  

In general, sidewalks are available in most parts of the historic village and along the main streets, but not within new residential neighbourhoods, where they are not typically required. Sidewalks are built to varying standards, some being traditional poured concrete sidewalks with curbs and others being multi-purpose asphalt walks without curbs. See Appendix 4 for a detailed sidewalk inventory.  


There are some concerns about truck traffic traveling on Roger Stevens Drive through the centre of the North Gower. Concerns are focused on the amount of traffic and the vibrations caused by heavy vehicles that is felt in houses. A suggestion was to divert the truck traffic from entering their village.  The amount of traffic on Church Street is also a concern and a suggestion to redirect through traffic to Roger Stevens and McCordick Road has been put forward. One last concern focuses on traffic on Prince of Wales Drive, James Craig Street and Andrew Street.  


Another request was to asphalt Third Line Road while another concern centers on traffic safety at Roger Stevens and Fourth Line Road to make it safer in keeping with its prominent location in the village. 


These traffic-related concerns have been conveyed to Public Works and Services staff and the Design Group has now been provided with a method to follow-up these specific concerns. 



Public transit


Bus service (# 45 Rideau) in North Gower is provided to downtown during peak hours only.  A special Friday-only service is also provided to Carlingwood Shopping Centre for residents, particularly seniors.   In addition, a park-n-ride facility at the North Gower Client Services Centre is provided.  It is advertised on the web, but is not signed. 


The Design Group acknowledge that Transit Services are notified of proposed development areas.  However, they would like their transit services to be improved also on an as-warranted basis.  One idea suggested by the Design Group is a park and ride service for the outlying villages so that they could quickly travel by bus into the urban area.




Utilities are overhead in the Village Centre but buried within new residential subdivisions. Some residents would like utilities to be buried within the Village Centre as well.  Burial of hydro wires and other utilities is a costly venture that is sometimes undertaken with a local business improvement area in the urban area.  Burial of utilities is desired by the Design Group and they would like this proposal to be revisited in the future.


Streetlighting is a concern of the Design Group.  They would like to see upgraded streetlights in existing subdivisions for the safety and security of residents, and they are concerned about the adequacy of existing street lighting along sections of certain streets such as Prince of Wales, Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line Road. They would also like to see lighting throughout new subdivisions and not just at intersections.  Better lighting of the bridges in the James Craig Street, Andrew Street and Prince of Wales Drive area, heritage lighting in the centre of the village and pathway lighting is also desired by the Design Group. There is a project being undertaken in the Planning, Transportation and the Environment department to review policies and standards related to lighting within the road right-of-way. The project was completed in 2007.


Access to state of the art communications and telecommunication services is desired by the Design Group.  One of the things they would like to see are communications towers located one kilometer beyond residential zones. The Canadian Radio-Television and Telecommunications Commission regulates the location of communications towers and its practice has been to be sensitive to residents’ concerns. 



Fire and Police


There is a local volunteer fire staff with one rescue pumper, one tanker, one rescue truck and one brush truck with ATV trailer.  There is a single water storage tank located in Horace Seabrook Park. During 2005, the fire station on Roger Stevens Drive was expanded to provide additional meeting space and added additional water storage tanks.  The Design Group proposes that potential water locations can be found in the vicinity of the North Gower Marlborough Public School (south of Stevens Creek bridge off Fourth Line Road) and at the North Gower Bowling Alley.  Police coverage is provided by the Ottawa Police.


The Plan can help ensure residents’ safety and provision of adequate infrastructure by:

·        Identifying future sidewalks to ensure pedestrian safety

·        Providing guidelines for stormwater management

·        Identifying ways to deal with existing truck traffic along Roger Stevens Drive

·        Recommending investigation into need to pave Third Line Road, replace and          supplement streetlights

·        Investigate burial of hydro wires and necessity of public parking lots




Introductory Statement


Part B – The Amendment, consisting of the following text and schedules, constitutes Amendment No. __ to the Official Plan for the City of Ottawa


Details of the Amendment

The following changes are hereby made to the Official Plan for the City of Ottawa:


i)  The Official Plan for the City of Ottawa, Volume 2C is hereby amended by adding the North             Gower Secondary Plan as follows:


North Gower Secondary Plan


1.0    Introduction


The North Gower Secondary Plan is a guide for the long-term orderly development of the Village of North Gower taking into account its unique rural setting.  A community vision, which resulted in goals and objectives, provides a framework for change.  The Secondary Plan provides specific direction on land-use, a parks and open space system, a multi-use pathway system, village centre and future roads.


This Secondary Plan represents a collaborative planning effort to develop the village as a desirable place to live, work and shop.



2.0    Planning Area


North Gower is a village centred on the crossing of Roger Stevens Drive, Fourth Line Road and Prince of Wales Drive.  The village is surrounded by a gently rolling landscape of actively farmed land.  The village is located in an area characterized by scattered drumlins, spoon-shaped hills of till pushed up by a glacier.  Between these drumlins lies a clay plain deposited by the Champlain Sea.


A white church spire is the tallest structure and is visible from the major roads leading to North Gower.  Surrounded by a broad agricultural plain, North Gower has thrived as an agri-business centre.  Its role has diversified over time to embrace young families and others seeking a rural lifestyle, with potential for new tourism and recreation opportunities in the future.  North Gower lies just beyond the doorstep of urban Ottawa, about a 20-minute drive along Highway 416 from the urban boundary and the shopping and employment opportunities there.



3.0    Vision, Goals and Objectives


The vision statements below describe the type of village desired by residents in the future.



3.1  Vision


“Based on its strong roots in agriculture, North Gower continues to thrive as the social heart of a vibrant farming community, where people put down deep roots and families live for generations surrounded by a legacy of unique heritage buildings. Over the years, the village has grown slowly, embracing its newcomers and welcoming them into the community, without forgetting its long history. In many ways, this growth has allowed the young people of the village to stay close to home while seeking opportunities in and beyond the family farm. Residents of the village and the surrounding farms have worked together for more than a century and a half to create a centre which responds to the needs of both residents and visitors.

There is a nurturing, welcoming attitude in the community that encourages families to settle and raise their children here, and grandparents enjoy living comfortably while they watch their children and grandchildren grow and enjoy a full, yet independent, lifestyle in the community. Young adults are able to find affordable housing and recreation within easy reach of employment, and youth are provided with opportunities for recreation and growth, which fosters the continuation of this sense of community.  

The business community in the village has regained ground lost in the past, and again thrives as in the "old days". North Gower is a village of unique recent entrepreneurs as well as long-established, widely respected businesses. Shops and professional offices, in new and heritage buildings in the commercial and core districts of the village, provide goods and services required for day-to-day living and farming. The Farmer’s Market celebrates a decades-long history by welcoming new vendors and regular visitors every year. The arts and gardening communities thrive on their garden shows, studio/open houses/workshops that have become a regular part of our village life.  

Village residents live relaxed, but active, lives. Recreational and community activities are the fundamental avenue where old friends meet and newcomers to the village make acquaintances and form friendships that last a lifetime. The Community Centre and surrounding grounds are the envy of other communities, forming as they do the “heart of the village” connecting residential and commercial neighbourhoods with multi-purpose pathways through parklands and green space. A youth centre provides a meeting place for the village’s young people to gather and meet friends, enjoy recreational activities, learn new skills and share music or stories in a safe environment. 


Green spaces, allocated when early subdivisions were built, form the core of a system of parks and reserved lands that are now developed parklands connected by walking and cycling paths. The gem of this network is the Stevens Creek Green, with its picturesque bridges, which extends along the shores of Stevens Creek throughout its length in the village and provides an enviable natural environment where residents enjoy a variety of cultural and recreational activities. 


North Gower residents are proud of their village’s position as the “rural jewel” of Ottawa. The village is linked to downtown by major and minor roads and good public transportation, giving residents rapid access to businesses, institutions and work places without compromising the rural character of their hometown. At the same time, those living in the city centre can easily take a break from the “bustle of the city” with a quick trip out to picturesque North Gower. Villagers participate actively in the affairs of the city as a whole while maintaining a strong allegiance to the distinct lifestyle found outside the City’s core.”



3.2  Goals and Objectives


The following goals and objectives provide further direction regarding a plan for North Gower.





   Growth Management

Goal:  To manage growth in North Gower in an orderly way that fosters            economic opportunities while providing for a mix of housing for residents            recognizing its rural setting. 



·        To protect and enhance commercial functions in the Village Centre

·        To provide adequate opportunity for employment

·        To provide a variety of business to support the day to day needs of residents     and visitors and surrounding farming community

·        To create a venue that is attractive and interesting for visitors, building on     attributes of the village

·        To provide an adequate mix of housing, including affordable housing, for     current and future needs of residents

·        To attract and provide support for the rural/farm community



Village Character

            Goal:    To preserve and enhance the village’s natural features, historic character,                         open spaces and amenities in order to build upon residents’ sense of                  community. 



·        To ensure new development is compatible with the existing look and feel of the village’s oldest streets located within the core and its existing village character

·        To recognize significant landforms

·        To design with nature

·        To preserve the riparian zone adjacent to Stevens Creek and improve public     access to the creek corridor

·        To identify a safe and convenient multi-use pathway system that links open spaces and recreational resources and land-uses

·        To conserve and to promote North Gower’s cultural and architectural      heritage resources



Public Services

Goal:  To ensure that village residents’ safety and security is provided for and   that there is adequate infrastructure services to permit growth. 



·        To provide adequate lighting levels (streetlights)

·        To ensure safe water and wastewater disposal systems

·        To provide recreational and leisure facilities that are convenient to residents

·        To identify partnerships for ongoing management for these recreational and leisure facilities

·        To provide state of the art accessibility to communications

·          To ensure safe vehicular traffic flow within the village

·          To provide adequate fire services

·          To ensure a system of sidewalks and pathways to encourage pedestrian     activity 

·           To protect existing development and to protect the floodplain from              inappropriate development in the vicinity of the Stevens Creek floodplain



4.0       Land-use Designations


A Secondary Plan implements Official Plan policies, but responds to area conditions and community feedback. It is future-oriented and reflects planning direction for the future of North Gower.   Schedule A - Land-use is comprised of the following designations:


·        Residential

·        Village Centre

·        Highway Commercial

·        Future Commercial

·        Local Commercial

·        Institutional

·        Industrial

·        Open Space

·        Agriculture


Each of the land-use designations is described in terms of intent, examples of permitted land-uses, and associated policies. These land-uses have been implemented through Zoning By-law changes, with the exception of the Future Commercial designation.


It should be noted that the following will also apply to the land-use plan and Zoning By-law changes:


·        The maximum permitted height will be three storeys, with the exception of the village’s church steeples

·        The Stevens Creek floodplain, shown in Schedule A, will be incorporated into the village’s new zoning maps as an overlay

·        Although Schedule A - Land-use provides for a range of uses, all new development must demonstrate, through hydrogeology studies in accordance with Official Plan section 4.4.2 Private Water and Wastewater Servicing, where deemed appropriate by the City, that the use can be accommodated on the site.



4.1   Residential


On Schedule A – Land-use, a single Residential land-use designation is shown throughout the village.  This designation generally applies to existing residential subdivisions and farmlands that are not affected by the Stevens Creek flood plain. 



Generally detached dwellings are the only type of residential development now found in this designation.  However, this does not preclude other forms of residential development from being considered in the future in North Gower. 


The intent of this designation is to permit a variety of housing including detached dwellings, which predominate in North Gower, and higher density housing so as to create opportunities for a range of housing to accommodate both young and old and for families to grow and age in place.    Other forms of housing that may be considered include semi-detached dwellings, duplex dwellings, townhomes, retirement homes, and garden homes (granny flats).  These uses will need to be reviewed in the context of a zoning amendment application and associated public consultation.   It should be noted that an amendment to this Plan will not be required.


Permitted Uses

The primary uses in this designation will be:

1)         Detached dwelling

2)         Secondary dwelling unit

3)         Home-based business

4)         Group home


In accordance with Official Plan policy, secondary dwelling units, home-based businesses and group homes will also be permitted in all residential areas.  It should be noted that garden suites will only be permitted through site-specific rezoning in order to permit a closer review of site-specific ability to accommodate the use.




1)         Residential development will generally take place through plan of subdivision and shall implement the following:


            i)       Schedule B - Parks and Open Space Plan

            ii)      Schedule C – Multi-Use Pathways Plan

            iii)      Schedule D – Future Roads Plan


2)         Residential subdivision design should incorporate features that will help to maintain the village’s rural character by:

i)                    Incorporating rural area features that are common to the North Gower landscape into subdivision design (e.g. existing hedgerows or proposing new hedgerows that are in keeping with the existing pattern, existing barns and silo structures) 

ii)                   Developing a stormwater management plan in consultation with the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority and managing stormwater on-site

iii)                 Including a tree streetscape plan as part of the subdivision review process to contribute to the greening of the village since many of the newer residential neighbourhoods have few trees 

iv)                 Where possible, maintaining views to the open spaces and farms outside the village

v)                  Where possible, maintaining views to the village’s landmark buildings such as the church steeples

vi)       Providing a transition area in new development abutting existing             residential neighbourhoods.  This may include locating new detached       dwellings adjacent to existing detached dwellings with possibly semi-           detached and duplex dwellings located further away.


3)         Subdivision plans will identify connections and easements for future roads, so that over time, local roads and pedestrian paths connect adjacent subdivisions.


4)         The naming of new streets will reflect the history and heritage of North Gower.


5)         There are limited opportunities to provide affordable housing in North Gower.  Due to the small scale of housing development, it is difficult for the City to impose a requirement for affordable housing. Secondary dwelling units, or separate residential units built within existing dwellings, are the most easily-created form of affordable housing available in the village. Another affordable         option is a garden suite located on a homeowner’s property. A site-specific temporary rezoning, for up to 10 years, will be required to permit a garden suite.  


6)         Minor institutional uses (e.g. churches) will be permitted in the Residential land   use designations, but will require a rezoning to accommodate the use.   No             amendments to this plan will be required.


7)         Housing is limited to a scale and rate of growth that does not overwhelm the      village character of North Gower and is in keeping with a slower pace of development desired by residents. The expected rate of growth is 25 building             permits per year.


8)         Housing will consist primarily of detached dwellings, however, multiple unit development that would provide a greater range of housing for all age groups may be considered in the context of a rezoning application. 



4.2   Village Centre



The Village Centre area will serve as the focus for commercial activity and pedestrian activity.  The intent of the Village Centre designation is to accommodate commercial, residential, and mixed-uses to further develop a main street identity. 


Permitted Uses

The Village Centre designation permits a wide variety of uses to serve residents, visitors and the adjacent farming community: 


1)         Commercial uses and services such as stores, grocery stores, bed and breakfasts, restaurants, art galleries, banks, offices, and personal service businesses such as hair dressers.


2)         Stand-alone residential uses such as      detached dwellings, multi-unit dwellings, retirement homes, and mixed-use buildings with 2nd floor apartments located above businesses, and group homes. 


3)         Due to its proximity to the core of North Gower, Village Centre, the properties at 2361 and 2383 Church Street (H.O. Wright) will have a Village Centre designation, but with limited permitted commercial uses.  This recognizes that the non-residential properties are located in a residential neighbourhood and will provide the owners with the flexibility to develop either for commercial or residential uses at a future date.  Permitted commercial uses will include: office, personal service such as a hair stylist or repair business with no outdoor storage. 




1)         New commercial development will be located primarily in the Village Centre and will serve as the commercial focus for North Gower.


2)         Development will be encouraged to respect the Village Centre heritage design guidelines found in Section 7.0 Village Centre, Heritage and Design. 


3)         Storefronts will be pedestrian-friendly and contribute to an active and vibrant commercial area.


4)         On-site parking will be located primarily to the side or in the rear of a building, where possible, to reinforce a pedestrian-oriented environment.


5)         Signage should be reflective of North Gower’s village character.


6)         Where possible, street trees and landscaping should be incorporated into development.



4.3   Local Commercial



The intent of this designation is to accommodate commercial areas that benefit from the availability of larger parcels of land located away from the historic centre to accommodate both building and associated parking.  The uses in this zone are intended to complement, but not compete with those found in the Village Centre. 


Permitted Uses

The Local Commercial designation permits a variety of uses providing services to North Gower residents and neighbouring communities.


1)         The types of uses that are appropriate in this designation include those that serve the day-to-day needs of residents, requiring larger land requirements than are available with the Village Centre designation such as animal hospital, automobile service station, gas station, car sales and rental, convenience store and repair business


2)         The properties at 6645 and 6649 Fourth Line Road are designated Local Commercial to recognize the existing nature of these businesses (public garage and welding operation).


3)         Uses such as retail uses or small shopping plazas should be located within the Village Centre.


4)         Storage yards must be visually screened on all sides from abutting uses. 



4.4   Highway Commercial



This designation applies to lands at the south-west intersection of Roger Stevens Drive and Highway 416, directly adjacent to the provincial roadway. The intent of this designation is to accommodate commercial uses that are dependent on good highway access and visibility.   


Permitted Uses

The types of permitted uses include those that are of a recreational and/or commercial type such as campground, automobile dealership, gas bar, heavy equipment and vehicle sales, and kennel.


In order to support the viability of the Village Centre, uses that should be located in the Village Centre will not be permitted in the Highway Commercial designation.



1)         Co-ordinate development so that issues such as landscaping, signage, parking are developed to complement its rural location.



4.5   Future Commercial



The intent of this designation is to show the general location of a future neighbourhood-oriented commercial use(s), which could have larger land requirements than is available on Fourth Line or Roger Stevens Drive.  The final location and area devoted to this use will be determined through a Zoning By-law Amendment and the associated studies.


Permitted uses

The types of uses envisioned for this location include those that serve the day-to-day needs of area residents, such as a grocery store and drug store.




1)         This area will be developed to have a street presence, be close to the Village Centre and have pedestrian access to the street.  

2)         Development of the site will connect to the proposed pathway system shown on            Schedule C.

3)         Sufficient screening and landscaping will be provided to minimize impact on the adjacent residential land-uses.



4.6   Institutional



The intent of the Institutional designation is to accommodate public uses that provide services to the broad cross-section of residents. 


Permitted Uses

Permitted uses include place of worship, client service centre, cemetery, fire station, library, museum, school and a community and recreational facility, such as the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility. Although this facility has a major open space component, the Institutional designation will permit future expansions of the existing building and will permit new buildings. 



1)         Buildings will be designed in such a way as to fit into the neighbourhood’s building context. 


2)         Buildings will be located in a way that respects the privacy of adjacent residential uses.


3)         Street trees should be incorporated into the development.



4.7   Industrial



This designation applies to the lands located at the south-west intersection of Roger Stevens Drive and Highway 416 that have been approved for an industrial subdivision.  The intent of the Industrial designation is to accommodate uses that could benefit the farming community and businesses that require visibility to the vehicular traffic on Highway 416.


Permitted Uses

The types of uses that can be accommodated within the industrial land-use include light manufacturing, building materials supply, warehouse, storage yard and farm implement sales and repair.


In order to support the viability of the Village Centre, uses that should be located in the Village Centre will not be permitted in the Industrial designation.



4.8   Open Space



The intent of the Open Space designation is to accommodate parks and recreational areas that provide leisure facilities for residents and nearby communities.


Permitted Uses

Uses permitted in this designation include public parks, stormwater management facilities, recreation facilities, and pathways. 




1)         New parks will be developed in accordance with Schedule B - Parks and Open Space Plan and in consultation with Parks and Recreation staff. The Plan identifies the approximate location of future parks in new subdivision development. While only the conceptual location of new parks has been identified, the City’s Parks and Recreation staff will be consulted as to their size and configuration.  Schedule C – Multi-Use Pathway Plan should also be consulted to ensure connectivity to other parts of the village.


2)         Lands designated Open Space will be designed to be readily visible and easily accessible to the public.


3)         Design of new parks will be undertaken in consultation with neighbourhood residents and residents of the village.


4)         Where feasible, new parks should be located to take advantage of existing park facilities and be located adjacent to the floodplain in order to maximize existing resources.


5)         The acquisition and development of lands will be in accordance with the parkland dedication by-law.


6)         Where appropriate, the City will:


i)                    Request parkland dedication, particularly where it provides access to Stevens Creek.


ii)                   Request cash-in-lieu of parkland where the site, by virtue of its location or other qualities, does not have potential to contribute to the park system.



4.9   Agriculture



The intent of the Agriculture designation is to continue to accommodate agricultural activities on lands located on the extensive floodplain within the village.  Due to the floodplain hazard posed, limited uses will be permitted in this designation. 


Permitted Uses

Permitted uses in the Agricultural land-use include:


1)         Farm

2)         Forestry use



5.0       Parks and Open Space Plan


The North Gower Landscape


A predominant feature of the North Gower landscape is its sense of rural open space consisting of wide expanses of farmland framed by mature maple and elm hedgerows and vegetation along Stevens Creek. This rural character is further expressed through views and vistas that focus on local landmarks including church steeples, barns, silos and shed rooflines. The Park and Open Space Plan (Schedule B) respects and reinforces this rural quality and the Multi-Use Pathway System (Schedule C) connects the parks and open

spaces within neighbourhoods to the Village Centre, Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility and to areas beyond the village.



Parks and Open Space Plan


The Parks and Open Space Plan identifies the location of existing neighbourhood, community parks and identifies possible future parkland in the village. Existing school and cemeteries are shown as “civic” open space.    The Stevens Creek floodplain, which is primarily under private ownership, is an extensive “natural” open space corridor with potential for public access and enjoyment. Combined, these landscapes containing playgrounds, playing fields, woodlots, hedgerows, meadows, fields, manicured lawns, and vegetation along the creek and creek shoreline, form an impressive open space system in the village.


At the same time, the village open space system and nearby agricultural lands together form part of the rural landscape that extends beyond the village boundary.


Future parks are shown conceptually and are based on a review of land available for development and its relation to existing park locations, open space and community needs.  In some cases, the proposed locations of parks are adjacent to existing parks to expand on recreational opportunities within one site and to facilitate on-going maintenance. In other situations, future neighbourhood parks are located adjacent to the Stevens Creek natural area, but not within the floodplain. Park size cannot be identified at this time since it depends on the amount of land to be developed and this is only known at the time of a development application.


As the village grows, new parkland can be acquired through the subdivision process as required by the Planning Act. The development charges obtained through the planning approvals process fund the cost of new park construction.


The community’s largest existing park is the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility, which has a variety of sports fields and recreational amenities including a community hall. The site is used by numerous clubs and organizations for league and tournament play and has been incrementally built over the years.  There is a master development plan and it outlines future plans for the facility.


Existing parks can be improved through life-cycle maintenance.  Other means available to improve parks in North Gower include: 


1)         Life-cycle maintenance of existing parks where specific items are replaced at the end of their life span as identified by staff

2)         Minor and major capital park improvements (single park feature) that are identified and requested by the community, Councillor or staff 

3)         Park development/redevelopment to enhance more than one feature in a park

4)         Community partnerships between residents and the City where costs are shared on a 50/50 basis

5)         Cash-in-lieu of parkland funds from the subdivision development process, which can fund park improvements

6)         Sports fields – development or improvement

7)         Outdoor rink infrastructure




1)         Schedule B - Parks and Open Space Plan, shows the conceptual location of new parks, and will serve as a guide during the development approvals and park planning process. Other park locations may be considered, but will conform to the intent of the Parks and Open Space Plan. 


2)         In North Gower, there will be two types of municipal parks.  At the local level, there will be smaller scale “neighbourhood parks” which serve the surrounding residential areas. The Alfred Taylor Recreation Centre is a well used “community park” that serves a diverse population of village residents and communities from outside the village. Any new parks will be developed as either“neighbourhood” or “community” parks.


3)         The design of future parks and the enhancement of existing parks will involve community consultation. 


4)         Developers and residents should consider naming parks using names of early pioneers as a means of respecting their heritage and rural roots. Some existing parks could also be renamed, as there is a discrepancy in the community as to the “official” park name. All proposed park naming must follow the City’s established commemorative naming process.


5)         In order to ensure that trees are planted in a      manner that still allows for future park improvements, new tree plantings should be coordinated between residents and Parks and Recreation staff. 


6)         New plantings in parks should enhance and add to the existing rural tree patterns of shade trees and hedgerows characteristic of the community.



6.0   Multi-Use Pathway Plan


A multi-use pathway system that will accommodate walkers, runners and cyclists will connect and link parks and open spaces within neighbourhoods to the Village Centre and to areas beyond the village (Schedule C). This multi-use pathway system will provide links to Roger Stevens Drive, Prince of Wales Drive and Fourth Line Roads, which have been identified as future cycle routes in the City of Ottawa’s draft Cycling Plan. It will also tie into the rural major recreational pathways identified in Schedule J of the Official Plan for the City of Ottawa.  


There are few public pathways in North Gower; however, there are a number of informal pathways on private property used by residents. These can range from well-beaten trails beside hedgerows located on the edge of active farmland to informal driveways. There are many opportunities to provide a multi-use pathway system across and along the shore of Stevens Creek. To implement the entire system, pedestrian bridge crossings will be required across the Creek and associated drains. 


Most of the multi-use pathway system is located in the village. Future pathways have also been identified linking residents on McCordick Road, Third Line Road and Stratton Drive, who are part of the “greater” North Gower community to the village.


New sidewalks have also been identified throughout the village and form part of the pathway system by interconnecting existing sidewalks and future pathways. In one case, a sidewalk extension on Church Street would not only complete a pathway circuit, but would also create a safer pedestrian environment for children walking to school from nearby neighbourhoods.  Improvements to sidewalks will also benefit transit riders since they all start and end their trip as pedestrians. 


It should be noted that while pedestrians will have access to both sidewalks and pathways, cyclists will be limited to use of the pathway system only since it is the only legal form of off-road facilities.  On road cycling facilities with signage are proposed for the three arterial roads in North Gower (Roger Stevens Drive, Fourth Line Road and Prince of Wales Drive).


Creation of a public pathway system will be predicated on two processes: 


1)         The subdivision process whereby the City can identify lands that would be required to be dedicated to the City for a pathway

2)         The willingness of property owners to allow public access to their lands since publicly-owned lands are limited to parks and municipal buildings 


To date, subdivision applications have been infrequent and it is anticipated that there will not be a significant number of pathways created through this planning process.  Residents, possibly through a village-wide association, will need to play a lead role in initiating and implementing the pathway system through their village and beyond.


Only general comments can be made to identify how the Multi-use Pathway Plan should be implemented.  The following are some of the criteria in deciding which parts of the Plan should proceed:


1)         Landowner agreement to have pathway cross their lands

2)         Pathways in core should have priority

3)         Complete circuits should be the goal

4)         Complete pathways not requiring large capital outlay, such as bridges to cross water courses, should be considered first


The proposed multi-use pathways will be constructed in accordance with City standards.  A pathway is typically two metres wide, but a multi-purpose pathway is about three metres wide constructed of asphalt or granular material.  A yellow stripe generally runs down the middle of a multi-use asphalt pathway.



Liability is a major concern to landowners as a result of allowing public access to their lands. One way of dealing with these concerns is a legal agreement between the private landowner and the City, which can be created to address such concerns. 



1)         The Multi-Use Pathway Plan shows the conceptual location of new pathways and these may be implemented in the short term through existing farmed areas and along hedgerows. When redevelopment is proposed pathways will be provided within the development.


2)         Pathways will be clearly identified to ensure users are aware that the system crosses private lands where the land is privately owned.


3)         North Gower’s village rural character should be reflected in the detailed design of the pathway system. This includes entry points to the pathway system, markers, directional signage and possible amenities such as benches and litter containers.


4)         The pathway system shall be implemented in a way that maximizes accessibility throughout the entire village and surrounding area.   


5)         Rideau Valley Conservation Authority approval will be sought during the design phase of pathway construction in the vicinity of the floodplain of Stevens Creek to ensure that the pathways are properly sited and constructed.







1)         The Parks and Open Space Plan and Multi-use Pathway Plan will be consulted during development review so that the proposed parks and pathways are incorporated in development applications in North Gower.  The City will seek opportunities to complete the pathway system in consultation with the landowner. In certain situations, existing or proposed sidewalks may complete the pathway links.


2)         Priorities for the multi-use pathway system should focus on the Village Centre to benefit as many residents as possible such as:  proposed pathway located to the north of the Alfred Taylor facility and proposed pathway linking residents from Craighurst Drive to Roger Stevens Drive. 


3)         Residents, in consultation with City staff, could initiate discussions with landowners as a start to building the pathway system.





1)         The City will consult the list of sidewalk extensions for inclusion in any future road works. 


2)         Implementation priorities for proposed sidewalks should focus on the issue of safety.  The first priority should focus on creating a sidewalk from the Farmstead Ridge neighbourhood to walk to the North Gower – Marlborough Public School on Church Street.  Children are currently bussed a few blocks to school since there are no sidewalks along this portion of Church Street.  A sidewalk would enable these children to walk to school safely.  Other priorities include creating sidewalk connections within the Village Centre, such as on Perkins Drive, Roger Stevens Drive from the farmers market to just west of the Old Co-op.


7.0   Village Centre, Heritage and Design


Buildings in the Village Centre represent North Gower’s history, but change is also desired.  One significant means of reflecting the village’s history while also looking towards the future is through the use of design guidelines.  Design guidelines have been developed as a means of encouraging development that is compatible with the Village Centre’s character. These guidelines will be applied to additions to existing buildings or new construction to replace a demolished building. The intent of the Village Centre design guidelines is to provide direction and assistance to developers and City staff in reviewing development applications and for future improvements to North Gower’s core. These guidelines apply to the area shown in Schedule E.



Heritage Residential Design Guidelines 


The following design guidelines have been developed to encourage development that is compatible with the character of the streetscape:


1)         Driveways to the side of the house and garages to the rear of the property are encouraged.

2)         The garage or other outbuildings should be simply finished and have gable or gambrel roofs.

3)         Landscape features, such as informal hedges along property lines, mass plantings of perennials and the use of large tree species, are encouraged.

4)         Planting large tree species just within the front property line, but away from overhead lines, is encouraged. This will help to preserve the shade and visual amenity provided by the tree canopy of large street trees.

5)         House forms such as the symmetrical 1 ½ or 2 storey, side gable roof, or the 2 storey, front gable roof, or the 2 storey house with multiple gables and bays are encouraged.

6)         Porches at the front of the house with shed roofs are encouraged.

7)         Adequate landscaping should be provided in order to preserve the subordinate relationship of the house to the landscape in the streetscape.

8)         The design of infill development should be compatible with the proportions, roof design and the site plan of the existing buildings in the streetscape.

9)         The use of simulated heritage detailing and decoration is discouraged. 

10)       Designers are encouraged to use contemporary materials and to use contemporary methods of architectural expression.  New buildings should be of their own time. 



Heritage Commercial Design Guidelines


The following design guidelines have been developed to encourage development that is compatible with the character of the streetscape:

1)         Adaptive-use of existing farm and commercial buildings is encouraged.

2)         Retention of early signage is encouraged. 

3)         Projecting or bracketed signs are encouraged. Backlit signs are discouraged. Exterior lights may be used to illuminate signs at night.

4)         Thick plantings of informal hedges and wide side yards are encouraged as a buffer between commercial and residential use.

5)         Porches with shed roofs or shed roof awnings are encouraged.

6)         Large garage-type doors, functioning as loading bays for example, are encouraged.

7)         Domestic building forms for commercial uses on Fourth Line are encouraged.  Refer to the three building forms identified in the residential use guidelines.

8)         Designers are encouraged to use contemporary materials and to use contemporary methods of architectural expression.  New buildings should be of their own time. 



Streetscape Improvements in Village Centre


Significant work has been undertaken to improve the village’s environment including tree plantings in the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility, along Perkins Drive and in neighbourhood parks and creation of a small park at the intersections and seasonal planters and banners.  


Several physical changes could significantly improve the overall impact of the main commercial area. 



1)        During road reconstruction of Village Centre roads, street furniture, such as garbage receptacles, bicycle parking, lighting and benches, should be installed that is in keeping with the rural heritage village character. 


2)        Continue to create pedestrian-friendly areas along Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line road.


3)        Through the development approvals process, encourage new businesses to create attractive storefronts contributing to development of a main street.


4)        Where possible, plant trees on Fourth Line Road and Roger Stevens Drive to create a pleasant pedestrian atmosphere.


5)        Create murals on prominent building walls that reflect the rural character and heritage that residents wish to preserve.


6)         Business people and residents should investigate the possibility of an information kiosk in the Village Centre.



Village Landmarks and Gateways


Roger Stevens Drive is connected to Highway 416 and carries both local and outside traffic through the Village Centre. Businesses recognize this and, as a result, the intersection of Fourth Line Road and Roger Stevens Drive


Surrounded by agricultural land, the gateways into the village are identified by  “North Gower” village signs.


Prominent landmarks in North Gower are its tallest structures:  the North Gower United Church steeple and the Holy Trinity Anglican Church steeple on Church Street. Both tall white spires are visible landmarks that can be viewed at a distance from many locations throughout the village. New development throughout the village should aim to retain views to these buildings.


Perkins Lumber is an important business in the village and occupies a significant and sizeable location in the centre of North Gower at Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line Road. It is understood that the business could relocate to larger premises and redevelopment of its current site will significantly impact the village. Any development proposal for the site should be reviewed in accordance with the policies below.



1)         During the development review process, be cognizant of landmark views to the village’s church steeples and surrounding pastoral areas. All new buildings     should be designed to be less tall than these buildings.


2)         Non-residential uses within the Village Centre should be adequately landscaped             and screened from residential uses. All open storage areas should be screened        from public view. 



7.1  Village Economic Development


This Plan establishes the planning framework to accommodate new commercial development in the Village Centre and throughout North Gower.   There is resident and business interest to actively market village and to attract new businesses to the village, including neighbourhood-serving uses.  A possible location is the area near the Village Centre to the northwest of Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line Road (see Schedule A – Future Commercial). 



8.0  Stevens Creek, Servicing and Infrastructure


8.1  Stevens Creek

A subwatershed study of Stevens Creek is needed to fully understand the role of Stevens Creek in the larger Rideau River watershed, to understand its make-up and impact of human activities on the water system and the recommendations to improve the system. Until the study is completed, the policies below will apply. 


The floodplain mapping in North Gower has been recently updated and completed by the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority. If a proponent wishes to discuss the location of the floodplain on a site-specific basis, this may be done at the time of development application with the conservation authority.



1)         Natural vegetation along Stevens Creek and its tributaries will be encouraged through restoration of natural vegetation, to improve wildlife corridor function, water quality and fish habitat.  Steep slopes along the Creek will be protected through the development review process and volunteer efforts.


2)         Floodplain, slope stability, and setbacks based on setbacks for water quality objectives established in the Official Plan will be considered when determining development limits for lands adjacent to Stevens Creek and its tributaries. 



8.2  Servicing and Infrastructure


8.2.1 Private Wells and Private Septic Systems


The following policies will apply with respect to private wells and wastewater systems in North Gower:



1)         All future development in North Gower will be on the basis of private wells and private septic systems unless the City reassesses the situation and decides to support alternative systems in villages.


2)         Development must be in accordance with Official Plan for the City of Ottawa Section 4.4.2 Private Water and Wastewater Servicing. Development will be reviewed in accordance with current guidelines for hydrogeological and terrain analysis studies. Final subdivision design must conform to the requirements of      these studies.



8.2.2 Stormwater Management


The following stormwater management (SWM) guidelines are to be implemented during the development application review process for subdivisions. These guidelines are not intended to replace the guidance or technical detail provided by the Ministry of the Environment’s Stormwater Management Planning and Design Manual or other generally accepted design practices and they do not provide a prescriptive approach.  For the most current stormwater management policies and practices, refer to the Official Plan.  The intent of these guidelines is to provide a methodology to be followed when planning and designing SWM practices for village subdivisions. This methodology emphasizes the maximum use of site design measures, lot level, and conveyance controls to achieve SWM objectives before consideration is given to the use of end-of-pipe facilities. Ultimately, it remains the proponent’s responsibility to assess the SWM requirements associated with each site and recommend appropriate SWM practices to mitigate the impacts of the development on receiving watercourses.




The following Interim Stormwater Management Guidelines will be used during the review of plans of subdivision until further study is undertaken in North Gower:


1.         Environmental Constraints: As noted in Appendix A of the MOE SWM Planning          and Design Manual: Good planning integrates the design of a site and the design of the stormwater management facilities in one process. In conjunction with assessing the SWM approach for the site, environmental and natural hazard constraints should be mapped on the site plan to determine the limits of development. Requirements for this exercise are detailed in the MOE Manual, the City’s Official Plan (Section 4) and other detailed guidance documents.


2.         SWM Design Criteria: SWM design criteria must be developed on a site-specific          basis to address changes to water balance, water quality and water quantity resulting from the proposed development. However, subject to the approved minimum lot sizes (as per detailed hydrogeological studies), the preferred emphasis will be on site design measures and lot level and conveyance controls to achieve the required SWM objectives. (Site design measures refer to ‘low impact development’ methods such as reducing the extent of clearing/grading; maximizing overland sheet flow; increasing site and lot vegetation cover, etc.)


2.1 Water Balance: A water balance exercise should be completed to assess the post-development change in runoff volume. The initial target should be to match the pre-development runoff volume by applying appropriate site design measures, and lot level and conveyance controls.  


2.2 Water Quantity: Subject to adequate demonstration that pre-development runoff volumes cannot reasonably be achieved via site design measures, lot level, and conveyance controls, the need for water quantity control (erosion and two to 100 year flood flow impacts) must be assessed. This will include a characterization of the ability of Stevens Creek to adequately convey any increase in peak flows and runoff volumes resulting from the development. This characterization will extend for a sufficient distance downstream of the site such that potential impacts from the site become negligible. After maximizing the use of site design measures, lot level and conveyance controls, should the increase in peak flows or runoff volumes from the development result in unacceptable impacts, or the existing capacity of the receiver is insufficient, the proponent will recommend measures to mitigate this impact on-site through appropriate SWM practices.


3.3 Water Quality: Every effort will be made to achieve water quality design criteria through the use of site design measures, lot level controls and conveyance controls before proposing end-of-pipe facilities.


8.3  Future Roads


For the most part, existing residential areas have developed independently of one another with few physical links with adjacent neighbourhoods. The Parks and Open Space Plan and the Multi-Use Pathway Plan identify ways in which the community can be physically linked through pathways and show opportunities to expand existing parks through the subdivision process. Another way to integrate existing residential areas with future ones is to identify a conceptual future local road network, shown in Schedule D, tying existing and new local roads together. 


The Future Road Plan was developed with regard to the location of developable land, floodplain, future pathways and parks.  



1)         In subdivision application review, staff should consult the Future Roads Plan so that new residential neighbourhoods are linked and integrated with existing ones.


2)         The future roads shown on Schedule D are conceptual and will guide staff in the review of subdivisions. Other road configurations could be considered if they achieve the goal of having integrated and connected neighbourhoods.



8.4  Transit


Additional transit service should be extended to North Gower as the village evolves and demand warrants it. 



8.5  Traffic, Parking and Utilities


As the Village Centre commercial area matures and there is a demonstrated need for the parking measures, public parking lots will be considered. 


Natural gas is available in North Gower and there is desire to see this extended to all parts of the village.



9.0  Implementation


The North Gower Secondary Plan is a land-use planning policy document that will guide future development using planning tools provided by the Planning Act. Many elements shown in the Plan are conceptual including location of parks, multi-use pathway locations, and boundaries of land-use designations. Modifications are anticipated in implementing the Plan as long as the general intent of the Plan is maintained.


Interpretation Section

The land-use plan is a statement of land-use planning policy that will be used to guide the development and the long-term growth of North Gower. Precise boundaries for the land-uses will be set out in the Zoning By-law.  The land-use plan will provide direction in the preparation of development proposals by developers and will be used by City staff in reviewing applications such as subdivision, rezoning and site plan control.


The North Gower Community Design Plan approved by City Council on January 23, 2008 provides the basis for this Secondary Plan and should be consulted for background purposes.


Any changes to the North Gower Secondary Plan will require an Official Plan Amendment and City Council approval.  


Amendments to the North Gower Secondary Plan will not be required for zoning amendments to permit residential uses other than detached dwellings.  


Any change to the village boundary will require an amendment to the Official Plan.


Implementation Strategy

Recommendations of the North Gower Secondary Plan are implemented primarily through planning tools such as zoning by-laws, subdivision, and site plan control. Residents, business people and the Design Group will help implement the Plan through their participation in development review and through other means identified in the Plan. 


Listed below are distinct action items with responsibilities categorized by theme: land-use, parks, open space and multi-use pathway, village centre plan, economic development Stevens Creek, servicing and public services.




Implementation Strategy








1.  Approve North Gower Community Design Plan       (CDP)

City Council


2.  Approve Official Plan Amendments:

i)                    to expand village boundaries,

ii)                   to remove North Gower Village Plan replacing it with the North Gower Community Design Plan

     iii)          to incorporate the North Gower                   Community Design Plan in the Official                   Plan as a Secondary Plan   


City Council


3.  Implement Schedule A – Land-use through zoning       by-law amendment

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


4.  Implement policy direction in CDP in development       applications

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department





Parks and Open Space Plan/

Multi-use Pathway Plan



1.  Acquire land for future parks and implement       Multi-Use Pathway Plan through review of       development applications and other means

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


Community and Protective Services Department



2.  Upgrade existing parks


Community and Protective Services Department


3.   Initiate discussions with land owners and     implement Multi-Use Pathway Plan



Community and Protective Services Department



4.   Convey list of sidewalk extensions to Public       Works and Services to their list of future sidewalk       work

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department



5.  Review Alfred Taylor Recreation     Facility       Masterplan (1993) and investigate issues and       opportunities associated with expansion and       land acquisition for recreational and other needs

Community and Protective Services





Village Centre, Heritage and Design



1.  Implement Heritage Residential and Commercial       Design Guidelines through development       applications

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


Property owners


2.  i)     Implement streetscape improvement                              recommendations, including sandwich board            issue

      ii)   Improve existing sidewalks and add new                       sidewalks and streetlights

Public Works and Services


North Gower Improvement Society


Residents and Businesses Owners


3.   Implement village landmark and       gateway policies       during development approvals process

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


4.   Investigate placement of an information kiosk for       Village Centre






Economic Development



1.  Initiate work to market and attract businesses to       North Gower

Business owners






Stevens Creek



1.  Encourage restoration of natural vegetation to       improve its wildlife corridor function and protect       steep slopes during development approvals process

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


Rideau Valley Conservation Authority


Property Owners



2.   Request that Rideau Valley Conservation    Authority investigate condition and role of dam on            Stevens Creek

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department


3.   Assess and prioritize need for a subwatershed  and        a reach study for Stevens Creek

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department








1.  Review development applications in accordance       with current guidelines for hydrogeological and       terrain analysis and in accordance with Interim       Stormwater Management Guidelines in CDP

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department




2.  Staff to review core development     in villages and       private services in context of rural development       strategy

Planning, Transit and the Environment Department





Public Services



1.  Investigate the traffic-related requests to determine       appropriate follow-up action and implement as       deemed appropriate


Public Works and Services



9.1  Monitoring


Monitoring the North Gower Secondary Plan will indicate whether the recommendations are being carried out as intended.  Should there be any changes to the North Gower Secondary Plan, amendments will be necessary.


The North Gower residents and the City should monitor the performance of this plan to assess whether the recommendations have been carried out and resulted in the intended effect. 



Map 1              2000 Land-use

Map 2              Proposed Boundary Expansion

Map 3              Stevens Creek Floodplain


Appendix 1      Farming Practices in North Gower

Appendix 2      Heritage Reference List and Designated Buildings in North                                                        Gower

Appendix 3      Municipal Park Inventory and Park Location Map

Appendix 4      North Gower Sidewalk and Storm Sewer Inventory

Appendix 5      Heritage Residential and Commercial Area Descriptions

Appendix 6      Description of Village Centre and Proposals

                        Village Centre

                        Fourth Line Road (North)

                        Fourth Line Road (South)

                        Roger Stevens Drive (East)

                        Roger Stevens Drive (West)

                        Church Street

                        Perkins Drive

                        Andrew Street, James Craig Street & Prince of Wales Drive

                        Community Way and Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility






Farming Practices in North Gower

(Source:  Design Group 2006)


Dairy cattle and port or cash crops

Droogh Farm, Fourth Line Road

Seabrook Farm, Church Street

Beef cattle, chickens and cash crops

Cowell Farm, Fourth Line Road

Cash crops (e.g. cattle corn, soy bean, wheat, barley, alfalfa & timothy hay)

Freeman Farm, Fourth Line Road

McEwen Farm, Prince of Wales Drive

Pratt Farm, Third Line Road

Seabrook Farm, Roger Stevens Drive

Stratton Farm, Prince of Wales Drive

Williams Farm, Roger Stevens Drive

Riding horses

Craig House Farm, Craig Street

Quantum Farm, Third Line Road

Strawberries, raspberries, pumpkins

Sharway Berry Farm, Prince of Wales Drive

Market garden produce

Cava’s Organic Farm, Roger Stevens Drive

Colonial Fruit Farm, Prince of Wales

Rideau Pine Farms, Fourth Line Road






Heritage Reference List and Designated Buildings in North Gower


This information represents an inventory of potential heritage resources as carried out in the former Rideau Township. “IV” indicates those buildings that have been designated through Part IV of the Heritage Act. 




























































































































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                                     Municipal Park Inventory


Developed parks with facilities

Parks (grass only)

Alfred Taylor Recreation Centre 6.3 ha (15.6 ac)

Craighurst Drive Park

.5 ha (1.2 ac)

Meadowbrook Park

1.1 ha ( 2.8 ac)

Shell Star 1 Park

1.3 ha (3.2 ac)

Horace Seabrook Park

.2 ha(.5 ac)

Lenida Drive Park

.2 ha (.6 ac)

Edward Kidd Park

.2 ha (5 ac)

Russvern Park

.8 ha (2 ac)

Cenotaph Park

.01 ha (.02 ac)

Farmstead Park

1.7 ha (4.2 ac)

Four Corners Park

.008 ha (.02 ac)


Edward Craig Park

1.7 ha (4.1 ac)


Bowling Alley





North Gower Sidewalk and Storm Sewer Inventory (Source:  Design Group)


In general, sidewalks are available in most parts of the historic village and along the main streets, but not in the newer residential neighbourhoods. Sidewalks are built to varying standards, some being traditional poured concrete sidewalks with curbs and others being multi-purpose asphalt walks without curbs, and are presently in various states of repair (or disrepair) being largely ignored in recent years.


                     From Main Street on Roger Stevens East, sidewalks go as far as 2311 on the north side (just before Co-op). On the south side, the sidewalk ends at 2320 and the storm sewer ends at 2316.

                     From Main Street on Roger Stevens West, on the north side, sidewalk and storm sewer ends at 2363. On the south side, the sidewalk ends at Perkins Lumber.  There is no sidewalk between Perkins Lumber and Centennial Town Hall.

                     On Perkins Drive, from Roger Stevens, there is a sidewalk and storm sewer on the north and east sides. On the south and west sides of Perkins Drive, there is open ditch and creek for drainage. 

                     From Fourth Line Road on Church Street, there is a sidewalk and storm sewer on the north side to North Gower-Marlborough Public School. On the south side from Lenida Street east on Church Street, there is a sidewalk and storm sewer to Lenida Street west on Church Street.

                     Carolin Court has no sidewalks and uses sub-drainage.            

                     On Main Street south from Roger Stevens, there are sidewalks and storm sewers to 6683 (Royal Bank) on the east side. On the west side, there are sidewalks to the old MTO lot.

                     On Main Street north, there are sidewalks and storm sewers to Prince of Wales.  From Prince of Wales and Main Street to the bowling alley, there is a sidewalk and storm sewer on the west side. Prince of Wales from Main Street to James Craig Street, there is a sidewalk and storm sewer on the south side. From James Craig Street there is a storm sewer and sidewalk on the east side for a short distance, but not as far as Michelangelo Court. On the west side, there is open drain to just north of the Cornerstone Wesleyan Church.

                     On James Craig Street, there is a storm sewer but no sidewalk except from Andrew Street to Roger Stevens Drive on the west side.

                     Community Way has no sidewalks but has sub-drains and open ditches.

                     Willisbrook Drive has no sidewalks and uses open ditches.

                     Recreational pathways (asphalt) link Meadowbrook subdivision to Edward Kidd Crescent and James Craig Street to Michelangelo Court.

                     Unofficial paths on private property, but widely used by village residents, link Fourth Line Road to Union Cemetery and Craighurst Drive, and Maple Forest Estates to the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility. Both of these are unmaintained dirt tracks made available for public use by the generosity of private landowners.  





Heritage Residential and Commercial Area Descriptions


Residential Characteristics

Within the Village Centre, the streetscape in older residential areas has an informal character. Several factors combine to create the informal village character. Large lots with wide frontage allow for a driveway to the side of the house and a separate garage to the rear of the property. The typical site plan of residential lots displays evidence of the early multiple uses that were accommodated on a single lot, such as small barns, outbuildings and sheds. Landscaping features that are typical include informal hedges between properties, large trees such as spruce, pine and maple along the perimeter of the lot, and informal plantings of shrubs and perennials throughout the property. The house is subordinate to the landscape because of the size of the lot relative to the house and because of the visual impact of the mature vegetation. 



                           The house is subordinate to the landscape


This area features a mix of late 19th and early 20th century classically inspired, Gothic Revival-inspired or Queen Anne Revival-inspired houses. The classically inspired, side gable, 1 ½ storey house is symmetrical, generally horizontal in its proportions and has a gable centrally located over the front door. The Gothic Revival, front gable, two-storey house is generally vertical in its proportions and has a steeply pitched roof. The Queen Anne Revival house is 2 ½ storeys in height and has a complicated roofline with multiple gables and bays. Porches with shed roofs are common to each of these building types.


Classically inspired, side gable                                 Gothic Revival-inspired, front gable




                                          Queen Anne Revival- inspired, complicated




Commercial Characteristics

Building types in heritage commercial areas have two general forms. The first is the domestic building form that has been adapted to commercial use, and is common on the Fourth Line north of Roger Stevens Drive. The second is the flat–roofed, usually one-storey building form. These flat-roofed buildings usually feature a decorative cornice or parapet. The architecture and site plan of both of these building forms reflect the late 19th century origins of the community; the buildings are close to the road, have a wide frontage, the driveways are to the side of the building and outbuildings are to the rear.  Commercial use is frequently directly adjacent to residential use. Informal hedges provide a visual screen between uses. Porches with shed roofs are common in both of the above forms; the shed roof may function as an awning. Gravel parking lots are typical and contribute to the informal character of the typical commercial use building.





Description of Village Centre and Proposals (prepared by Design Group as part of 2004 community plan)


The Village Centre


General Description


The Village Centre contains North Gower’s historic settlement, with many of its original houses still intact.  It also encompasses historic Church Street and beautiful Perkins Drive along the shores of Stevens Creek.  It is the Village Centre that most demonstrates North Gower’s unique character and heritage; it defines the village for its inhabitants and visitors alike, and shapes its identity.  Growth of the village has tended to spread outward from the centre along the main roads in all directions, but development in vacant lands within the village has occurred to fill gaps in the village landscape in recent years.  The Village Centre remains its social and commercial focus, fostering a vibrant village life both in the Centre and beyond.


Within the Village Centre several distinct areas may be identified each with its own character and design, all located geographically within the Centre but each contributing its own flavour to the whole.  Collectively, they provide the village and its residents with the services and amenities needed to sustain day-to-day living and commercial operations.   These areas are comprised of:


                        Fourth Line Road 

                        Roger Stevens Drive

                        Church Street

                        Perkins Drive

                        Andrew Street, James Craig Street & Prince of Wales Drive

                        Community Way and the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility


Within the Centre may be found the diversity of small-scale commercial activities, recreational facilities and mixed housing that defines North Gower as a vibrant rural community.




The overall objective is to reinforce the separate and distinct functions of each of the areas of the Village Centre while building strong links between them and contributing a strong focus and sense of community.


The Village Centre should provide a unique identity for the village.  It is the community’s gathering place, its social core, its commercial heart and the foundation of the village’s past, present and future.





To:  Enhance the visual impact of the area by modifications to the streetscape, which include placing services underground, improving sidewalks, and enhancing street planting and signage in a way which creates a consolidated character to the Village Centre;

·        Encourage development of small businesses within the Village Centre and multi-purpose usage of existing or new buildings

·        Encourage upkeep and enhancement of existing properties that have been designated through Part IV of the Ontario Heritage Act, by providing matching grants to property owners

·        Provide secure and convenient parking facilities throughout the core while facilitating and promoting safe pedestrian access, when there is a demonstrated need for these facilities or when opportunities arise for acquiring properties

·        Facilitate development of multi-purpose, and multi-family residential units within the Village Centre

·        Restore existing natural resources and develop parklands and a network of pedestrian routes both within the Village Centre and between the Centre and the remainder of the village.



Fourth Line Road North       


General Description


This area is mainly a commercial district, mixed with private residences, some multiple-family housing and some public buildings.  Businesses currently operating along this end of Fourth Line Road include hair salons, a restaurant, an auto service center, and an antique store; public buildings include the North Gower Branch of the Ottawa Public Library which is situated in the former township fire hall, the Rideau Archives housed in the former Town Hall, and the North Gower Bowling Alley. Historically, this was the main street and business sector for North Gower, but then and now, still has several residential buildings, making it a quaint balance of both. This area serves both incoming and outgoing traffic south towards Kemptville and north towards Richmond and Ottawa.




This area is the village heart or center of the village.  Visitors to the village form their opinions and memories of North Gower on the basis of their first impressions along this street.  The long-term objectives for this area is to improve its visual impact and develop its potential as the “main street” in town, re-enforcing its heritage character and building on the strengths of the current streetscape.




·        Encourage upkeep or improvement of existing buildings and landscapes in keeping with the heritage character of the older homes already present on the street.

·        Re-develop the street to introduce landscaping features such as heritage lamp posts, hanging flower baskets in the summer, and seasonal flags or other decorative items at other times

·        The street should be reconstructed to install underground wiring and services, re-design and re-surface sidewalks to encourage pedestrian use of the street; increased vegetation and tree planting, and signage directing visitors and locals to the Information Kiosk at the Bridge Street bridge.

·        Encourage commercial development, multi-use buildings that provide housing and business opportunities, and provide off-street public parking, when required.

·        Develop a multi-use pedestrian/cycle pathway along the footpath which currently runs across private land from the flashing light on Fourth Line to the Union Cemetery.



Fourth Line Road South       


General Description


The southern corridor of the village extends less than one kilometre from the Village Centre.  This area extends from the village’s only traffic light, intersects with historic Church Street at the United Church, includes a bridge that crosses historic Stevens Creek and then intersects Community Way which leads to the village’s major recreation area.  Beyond this area are working livestock and grain farms.  The community has supported a mix of light and heavy commercial enterprises in this area which include: a funeral home, automotive (sales/repair/gas) and heavy farm mechanical industries, a welding shop, variety store and gas station, hair stylists, a home-based renovation enterprise and a wine/beer making store.  Intermingled with these businesses are residential homes including two pre-Confederation homesteads. 




This area has the capacity to support many small businesses  (craft/flower shop, tea room, home-based businesses etc.) within walking distance of the Village Centre.   The objective in this neighbourhood is to provide a multitude of services and amenities to meet the needs of all residents in the village, linking the Community Centre to adjacent residential neighbourhoods and the Village Centre by a network of pedestrian walkways. 


This section of the Fourth Line Road also carries considerable heavy vehicular traffic en route to/from highway 416 and requires significant traffic route changes and signage to make it safe for pedestrians and visitors.  An information kiosk sign (“?”) will direct visitors to an appropriate location to advertise the services available in and around the village.





To ensure:


§         Re-development studies and consultations with the community are undertaken for development proposals

·        Appropriate signage directing visitors to a proposed Information Kiosk in the Village Centre

·        Undertake traffic study (cars and trucks) along Fourth Line Road to assess current traffic situation to respond to residents’ concerns

·        Safe pedestrian passage and linkages to the Village Centre and the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility site

·        Develop multi-use pedestrian/cycle pathways to connect to a village-wide system


Roger Stevens Drive East   


General Description


The character area is the main arterial route from the Village Centre to the major four-lane highway (416) to the east of the village.  The dominant use of this area is single family residential with two duplex residences.  Small lot sizes (all residences on the north side of the street encroach on road allowance), excessive large truck traffic and infrastructure insufficiencies (e.g., storm sewers) are major constraints to the development of the area.




The long term objectives for this area is to develop Roger Stevens Drive East as a people-friendly mixed residential and commercial use area and the main entrance route to the village from Highway 416.  Potential commercial uses, such as an art gallery, bed and breakfast accommodation, flower shop etc., in combination with single family and multiple family housing units are envisioned.




To:  Review the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility Master Plan and ensure acquisition of lands in accordance with results of the review as opportunity arises

·        Pursue development of a corridor of public property with carefully designed, well-lit pedestrian pathways along Stevens Creek, connecting this street with the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility site to the south, Fourth Line Road at the Stevens Creek bridge to the east and the residences on Michaelangelo Drive should be pursued as land becomes available

·        Undertake traffic study along Fourth Line Road to assess current traffic situation to respond to residents’ concerns

·        Provide secure and convenient parking facilities throughout the core while facilitating and promoting safe pedestrian access, when there is a demonstrated need for these facilities or when opportunities arise for acquiring properties


Roger Stevens Drive West  


General Description

The area is highly diverse in its use with a lumber yard / builders retail centre which also represents a major employer in the village.  Additionally, the fire station servicing the North Gower area is located in this block.  Adjacent to the fire station is a former township building used by firemen and a senior citizens’ group.  This building is currently in poor repair and its future is uncertain.  Residential properties are interspersed on both the north and south sides of the street.  Between the intersection with Perkins Drive and the entrance to the Craighurst Subdivision, the mix includes a seniors’ residence, weekly Farmers’ Market, a retail operation (Stevens Creek Country Market) and private residences.  Roger Stevens Drive West is the major arterial route from Smiths Falls and the surrounding cottage /recreational areas.  Accordingly a very high volume of traffic is experienced for daily commuters as well as the weekend cottagers particularly during the summer months.



The objective for this area is to ensure that future development of the retail segment provides services/amenities that are beneficial to the residents of the community and encourage visitors to “stop and shop”.   As the business of the existing lumber yard expands, it will outgrow its present location making relocation outside of the core area necessary.   It is also apparent that relocation of the Fire Station from the current location is imminent due to restriction placed on it by the lack of available room for expansion. The combination of the two relocations will provide a valuable land resource within the core area the future use of which should be considered carefully.





·        Provide appropriate signage for the proposed Information Kiosk

·        Ensure safe pedestrian passage from the intersection with Fourth Line Road west to the North Gower Farmer’s Market

·        Undertake traffic study (cars and trucks) to assess current traffic situation to address residents’ concerns  

·        Redesign the intersection of Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line Road to make it safer and more attractive, in keeping with its prominent position within the village.



Church Street            


General Description

The Church Street area is comprised of residential single family homes, a few multiple family units, a public school (kindergarten to grade five), two churches, service providers, and other small commercial enterprises.  The street itself is a collector for traffic from several subdivisions and dwellings for traffic en route to/from Prince of Wales Drive and Highway 416.  The institutions periodically place heavy demands on street parking.  The street receives moderate to heavy pedestrian traffic including many children.  The dwellings along the street are typically late 19th-early 20th century architecture with front porches and gardens in the back.  The churches date from the last quarter of the 19th century.




The long term goals are to encourage the restoration and maintenance of the historic architecture and residential character of the street, promoting Church Street as a Heritage District and encouraging safe pedestrian access.




To ensure:


·        That this area has “heritage lighting” (perhaps with gas lights) which increases illumination, providing greater safety and protection, while enhancing the historic nature of the area.

·        That pedestrian traffic is encouraged, rest areas (benches) and paths in associated green spaces will be constructed to compliment sidewalks. 

·        That the heritage character of the street is maintained by encouraging architecture/building styles for new structures or renovations that complement existing structures.

·        Undertake traffic study along Church Street to assess current traffic situation to respond to residents’ concerns

·        Protection of Stevens Creek in this area, including the development of green space and paths along its shores

·        That the bridge at the easterly end of Church Street provides a suitable entry point for this historic neighbourhood.



Perkins Drive            


General Description

Perkins Drive runs from Church Street to Roger Stevens Drive and is bounded on one side by single family homes.  The Post Office is also prominent on the north side as well as the end bay of the North Gower Mall.  Fronting Stevens Creek on the south side is Horace Seabrook Park and the Cenotaph.  The predominant use is single family residential, while the Park is used mostly by seniors who enjoy the shuffle board and benches and mothers with young children who play on the swing set.




The long term goal for this area is to restore the Stevens Creek shoreline and enhance Horace Seabrook Park so that it becomes a meeting place for villagers and a venue for both winter and summer functions.




Ensure that:


·        Concerted efforts are undertaken to restore the creek and its shoreline to a healthy natural state, which facilitates its usefulness as a fish and wildlife habitat and a place of natural beauty;

·        Further develop the park through the addition of varied seating and playground equipment, additional lighting and signage;

·        Park facilities should be enhanced, through the addition of a small stage, bench seating, access to electricity and other facilities, to make it suitable for small fairs, outdoor art shows or musical and theatrical presentations;

·        A Village Information Kiosk should be installed at the corner of Perkins Drive and Church Street as a central place for local information and maps;

·        Residential use of the street should continue as primarily single family homes with no major changes.



Andrew Street, James Craig Street & Prince of Wales Drive       


General Description


This area is currently a mixed-use neighbourhood with both commercial enterprises, such as a grocery store and a builder’s shop, and a mix of housing which includes some unique heritage homes built in North Gower’s early days.  While Prince of Wales Drive is mostly residential, it also serves as a main gateway (see also B.5.8.2) to the village and, as such, carries considerable traffic.  Taylor’s Drain runs through this neighbourhood, crossing both Prince of Wales and James Craig Street. 




The long term goal in this neighbourhood is to develop the gateway to the Village Centre along Prince of Wales to provide a pleasant and distinctive welcome to North Gower and ensure safe vehicular traffic patterns.  This area has the capacity to encompass office and pedestrian scale retail, as well as bed and breakfast visitor accommodation, without jeopardizing its attractiveness as a residential area.       




Ensure that:

·        Safe vehicular traffic flow as it enters the village (a traffic is in order to determine the best way to control traffic flow);

·        Good directional signage to redirect through traffic readily and to make local traffic safe;

            parking is provided in small off-street lots at suitable locations, both in this area and elsewhere in the Village Centre, when required

·        The two bridges in this neighbourhood should be enhanced, to mirror the Stevens Creek bridge on Church Street, for instance, and provided with better lighting, making them more attractive and distinctive and providing this area with an attractive “signature”;

·        In keeping with the vision of a pedestrian-oriented village, the sidewalk along James Craig should be extended its full length, connecting at the north end with a sidewalk which would continue north on Prince of Wales Drive at least to Michaelangelo Drive; again enhanced lighting should be provided along these routes.



 Community Way and Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility


General Description


The Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility (ATRF) is located at 2300 Community Way on a 16-acre site built 20 years ago.  Presently this Facility has a building manager and all active and passive recreation activities are managed by a volunteer Recreation Association (RA) Executive which has a facility service and maintenance agreement with the City of Ottawa. 


The Recreation Association (RA) provides a community-driven venue for residents of all age groups to proactively develop and support outdoor/indoor recreation, arts and cultural activities and programs.   The space in the Facility can be divided into three separate meeting rooms depending on the number of people and it  is also home to the North Gower CO-OP Nursery School.  The RA, North Gower Lions Club and local volunteers maintained the Facility as an Emergency Evacuation Site during the Ice Storm of 1998 for 10 days.


Currently the site has two baseball diamonds (lighted), a canteen (with washrooms), a gazebo, a “mountain” for winter activities, play structure, swing set, four tennis courts, a multipurpose outdoor surface (rink) and two soccer pitches.  The site is heavily used by various clubs (seniors, walkers, snowmobile, Lions), baseball leagues (Slo-pitch) and organizations (soccer and baseball) for tournaments and fund-raising events.  The building manager takes weekend bookings for weddings and dances (Fiddlers) and weekday bookings for evening activities (Guides/Scouts, Karate, dance lessons, aerobics, blood donor clinics, first aid training), benefits (fund-raising), meetings and local presentations.  Special community events such as Canada Day, Winter Carnival, Community Christmas and fund-raising events (Lions, Nursery School and Firefighters) are held annually.





This Facility and site will continue to be a focal point for major community events for many years and will attract visitors from neighbouring villages and other cities.  In future, all pedestrian village pathways (linkages to subdivisions) will lead to the Facility and site.  A full-time Recreation, Arts and Culture Co-ordinator at the Facility is required.  Property adjacent to the current site should be acquired to develop and build additional soccer pitches, baseball diamonds, a lawn bowling surface, a water park, an arena (ice) will support the growing and changing needs of the community for active and passive recreation to maintain our healthy rural lifestyle.




·        Review the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility Master Plan and ensure acquisition of lands in accordance with results of the review as opportunity arises

·        Ensure appropriate signage directing visitors to the proposed Information Kiosk “?” in the Village Centre

·        Ensure Safe pedestrian passage and linkages between the Village Centre and the Alfred Taylor Recreation Facility

·        Ensure that a full-time Recreation, Arts and Culture Co-ordinator is hired to manage the needs of the community.



CONSULTATION DETAILS                                                                          DOCUMENT 3


A heads-up notice was sent out to community associations/group in Rideau-Goulbourn Ward to inform them of the upcoming public circulation of an Official Plan Amendment.  This was followed with a public circulation of the draft Official Plan Amendment resulting in comments from the North Gower Design Group.  In addition, those individuals who provided comments during the North Gower CDP planning process were also notified of this amendment. 





1.  Include expected rate of development into      the Secondary Plan’s residential policies.

One sentence added to the end of Section 4.1 7) to read:  “Housing is limited to a scale and rate of growth that does not overwhelm the village character of North Gower and is in keeping with a slower pace of development desired by residents.  The expected rate of growth is 25 building permits per year.”

2.  i)     Clarify why outdoor storage is not                     permitted in the Village Centre                     designation of the village, but allowed                in the Local Commercial designation                  that is found in another part of the                      village.














     ii)  Editorial comments:

     “The symbol shows….” Should be replaced      with “The intent of this designation is to      show….”


     iii) Is there a parkland dedication by-law for      the whole City?  Should there be a separate      one for North Gower?  Funds derived from      North Gower should be applied to the      acquisition and development of parkland in      the village.


     iv) There should be a clear statement that      the   Secondary Plan will be reviewed      annually by possibly a group of volunteers     to identify conformity to the plan and the    need for any amendments.



     v)    The work and efforts of the Design      Group to make North Gower a vibrant      rural community should be continued.

i)   The properties in the Village Centre designation were built for non-residential purposes.  The approved North Gower CDP identifies limited neighbourhood-oriented commercial uses for these properties that are located in the middle of a residential neighbourhood.  Outdoor storage is prohibited to minimize impact on adjacent residential uses.


In the Local Commercial designation, a range of uses is permitted.  This designation affects only a few properties on found Roger Stevens Drive and Fourth Line Road.  These are located on the edge of residential areas so there are specific policies that storage areas be screened from view.



ii)   Agreed.





iii)  A single parkland dedication by-law for the City of Ottawa is in the process of being prepared.  Staff will address the issue of how these funds will be allocated.




iv)  Once the Secondary Plan is given final approval, it will become part of the Official Plan.  There is a mandatory review of the Official Plan every five years. 




v)  Agreed.

3.  i) Funds accumulated from cash-in-lieu of      parkland in North Gower should be dedicated for use in the village and not      elsewhere in the City of Ottawa.


     ii) There is reference to a master facility      plan for the Alfred Taylor Recreation      Facility and that it will be reviewed for      relevance and updating.  Who will do the      review and when?  With the recent      subdivision applications that are now being      reviewed, now would be a good time to look      at what impact additional development will    be on the facility as well as others.

i)   See response to 2. iii).





ii)  This information has been conveyed to Parks and Recreation staff for their consideration.







Councillor Glenn Brooks is aware of this amendment.


Staff consulted with the North Gower Design Group, who provided comments during preparation of the community design plan.  This group also provided some specific comments during public circulation of this amendment.  Their comments related to points of clarification and editorial suggestions.  These are detailed in Document 3.




No comments received from the Rural Issues Advisory Committee.

[1] David Douglas, An Evaluation of Potentials:  Hamlets & Villages Rural Ottawa-Carleton, 1998.