Report to/Rapport au :


Planning and Environment Committee

Comité de l'urbanisme et de l'environnement


and Council / et au Conseil


10 February 2010 / le 10 février 2010


Submitted by/Soumis par : Nancy Schepers, Deputy City Manager, Directrice municipale adjointe,

Infrastructure Services and Community Sustainability, Services d'infrastructure et Viabilité des collectivités


Contact Person/Personne-ressource : John Smit, Manager/Gestionnaire, Development Review-Urban Services/Examen des projets d'aménagement-Services urbains, Planning and Growth Management/Urbanisme et Gestion de la croissance

(613) 580-2424, 13866


Rideau-Vanier (12)

Ref N°: ACS2010-ICS-PGM-0020












That Planning and Environment Committee recommend Council approve the demolition of a residential duplex building located at 501 Besserer Street and impose the conditions as set out in Document 2.




Que le Comité de l’urbanisme et de l’environnement approuve la démolition d’un duplex résidentiel situé au 501, rue Besserer et impose les conditions énoncées au document 2.





The subject property is located on the north side of Besserer Street between Cobourg Street and Charlotte Street.  The property contains a duplex building that is currently vacant.  To the north is a large vacant parcel, which will be developed with the subject property in the future.  Adjacent to the east is a single detached dwelling.  Adjacent to the west is a mixed residential use.  Across Besserer Street to the south are single detached dwellings. 


The purpose of this proposal is to permit the demolition of a residential building prior to obtaining a building permit for the redevelopment of the property as reflected on the Site Plan Approval given in November of 2005.  It is proposed that the existing dwelling be demolished, that the site be seeded/sodded within three months of the demolition, and that the property be maintained as open space until such time that the site can be developed. 


As noted, Site Plan Approval for 501 Besserer Street (D07-12-03-0137) and 546 Rideau Street (D07-12-03-0137) was granted in November of 2005, and various extensions to approvals granted, to permit the development of a four-storey, eight-unit apartment building along Besserer Street and a nine-storey, 122-unit apartment building along Rideau Street.  However the applicant does not plan to proceed with construction until issues are resolved with burying the Hydro wires on Rideau Street.  In addition, significant capital works are proposed along this portion of Rideau Street within the next four years, which would adversely affect the marketability of both retail and residential components of the proposed buildings.  The applicant received approval to extend the time frame to enter into a Site Plan agreement to November of 2013 (D07-12-09-0138), subject to the demolition of the duplex on Besserer Street and the maintenance of the property until it can be developed. 


The request for demolition control approval was in response to the Councillor who was concerned “about the dangers caused by maintaining the boarded up property”.  In addition the Councillor sought assurances that after demolition the property would be seeded or sodded and maintained, as open space and not used for other interim uses such as parking.




Staff is recommending approval of this application, as the existing condition of the building not only makes it uninhabitable but creates an opportunity for criminal activities to take place, despite the property owner’s efforts to prevent such activities.  Development for more residential units is delayed but is forthcoming.  It is not economically feasible to repair the existing dwelling to be habitable in the interim.  Finally, it is preferred to have the property seeded or sodded and maintained as a vacant lot rather than a derelict building.   


The Planning Act and the Demolition Control By-law enable Council to impose conditions on demolition control approvals.  This report sets out several conditions that staff consider appropriate for this approval. 


Condition 1 (see Document 2) relates to determining and dealing with any site contamination that may exist on the property. 


Condition 2 originates from Section 33 of the Planning Act.  This condition allows Council to stipulate a timeframe for a replacement building and include up to $20,000 per dwelling unit on the property's tax roll, should the replacement building not be substantially completed within the timeframe specified.  This is to ensure that the site will be developed within a reasonable time period, so as to maintain the fabric of the community.  The eight-year timeframe specified in the recommendation provides six additional years over the normal time frame for having buildings substantially completed following the demolition of a residential property.  This is to allow for issues to be resolved with burying the Hydro wires on Rideau Street and having the significant capital works proposed along this portion of Rideau Street being completed.  If a replacement dwelling is not substantially completed within eight years, a monetary penalty of $ 5,000 per dwelling unit is recommended. 


Conditions 3, 4 and 5 require that the site be grassed and maintained as a vacant lot within a specified time period.  These conditions ensure that the site will be maintained in a state that will not detract from the residential area. 


Condition 6 ensures that the owner enters into an agreement with the City within six months of the date Council approves this recommendation.  Should the owner not enter into the required agreement within six months, the approval will be considered null and void.








Notice of this application was carried out in accordance with the City's Public Notification and Consultation Policy.  No comments speaking against the proposed demolition were received. 




The Ward Councillor is aware of this application and the staff recommendation.




There are no legal/risk management implications associated with this report.




This proposal moves the City’s Strategic Plan forward by respecting the existing urban fabric and neighbourhood form so that new growth is integrated seamlessly with established communities, by disposing of an eyesore in the community and replacing it with a grassed and maintained area until development can move forward.












This application was not processed by the "On Time Decision Date" established for the processing of Demolition Control applications due to discussions to determine conditions.




Document 1    Location Plan

Document 2    Conditions




City Clerks and Solicitor Department, Legislative Services to notify owner and all interested parties of City Council’s decision.


Legal Services to prepare agreement.





LOCATION MAP                                                                                                  DOCUMENT 1






1.      The owner shall be required to submit a Designated Substances Survey to the General Manager, Planning and Growth Management and the Chief Building Official, Building Code Services Branch, and agree to undertake and implement the recommendations of a Designated Substances Survey, in accordance with Best Management Practices, including but not limited to:


a.       Asbestos on Construction Projects. (O.Reg 278/05)


b.      Lead on Construction Projects (ISBN 0-7794-6774-4) Made Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.


c.       Registration Guidance Manual for Generators of Liquid Industrial and Hazardous Waste. (O.Reg 347)


d.      Proposed Regulation Respecting Lead on Construction Projects Made Under the Occupational Health and Safety Act.


e.   Waste Management - PCBs. (O.Reg 362)


2.      That a replacement building for 501 Besserer Street be substantially completed within eight years from the date of this approval and in default thereof, the City Clerk shall enter on the collectors roll the sum of $5,000.00 for each dwelling unit contained in the residential property demolished.


3.      That immediately following the demolition of the building, the registered owner shall ensure the lot is levelled and all construction debris removed and that within three months of levelling the lot, the lot is seeded or sodded and the seeding or sodding takes hold and commences to grow, unless the demolition occurs between November 15 and March 15, the requirement to seed or sod the lot shall be extended to be completed by May 30 of the year immediately following demolition.  Failing which the City will undertake this work and enter on the collections roll the sum of the costs incurred to perform these works.


4.      That until the time of construction of the replacement building, the registered owner shall maintain the property as open space, not use the property for other interim uses, and specifically not for parking, and maintain the property in accordance with the Property Standards By-law.


5.      That the owner enter into an agreement with the City of Ottawa including the forgoing conditions and pay all the costs associated with the registration of the said agreement.  At such time as the replacement building is complete, the agreement will become null and void and will be released upon request by the owner.  The owner shall pay all costs associated with the registration of the release from this agreement.


6.      That the approval for demolition be considered null and void if the provisions of condition 5 have not been fulfilled within six months of the date of approval.