Plans to renew Carling Avenue between Pinecrest Road and Bayshore Drive will continue this term of council with help from the City of Ottawa’s Community Improvement Plan (CIP).
Together with local residents and businesses, my team and I have developed a plan that will stimulate business investment, generate new commercial activity, and improve employment opportunities in the community.
Our office has been continuing to work on using the Economic Development strategy to leverage business interests along this section of Carling Avenue. That work began at the start of our first term of office and continues today.
The early work had been started with City Staff from our Economic Development Office and Invest Ottawa beginning in early 2011 with our first stakeholder meeting on November 29, 2011. At that meeting we had gathered local businesses and related community agencies to start the consultation process to determine what was needed. Building on that successful meeting we continued to work with City Staff to build a toolkit which would allow us to stimulate Economic Development in the area.
By late 2012 Committee and Council had approved a Community Improvement Plan (CIP) for Carling Avenue and another for Orleans which allowed us to move forward in our development of the area. During this process our office along with City Staff from the Economic Development office had and continues to engage the business community in the area to gather feedback from businesses as to their needs.
Again building from that further success, our office held a subsequent Open House for local businesses, Community Partners and Neighbours of the Community on Wednesday February, 2013 at Bayshore Public School.
At that meeting we had a productive discussion of ideas on what can be done to re-vitalize the area, including:
- Potential for businesses who locate to the community or expand their current businesses to receive tax incentives to build new business space or expand existing space
- Discussed newer business models for the area such as a format of having retail shops on the ground floor with potential for office space above in a low rise profile building
Discussed how Economic Development will benefit the area:
- Creating viable employment options to residents of the area
- Provide Economic Development opportunities for businesses to open or expand in the community
- Look at gaps that exist in the neighbourhood to see how they may be addressed
Taking this input into careful consideration, City staff developed a Community Improvement Plan that would spark growth and renew the main street appeal of the neighbourhood.
Through the CIP, property owners will receive tax incentives to redevelop land or buildings that are underutilized, idled or in need of repair or renovation. With these improvements, Carling will become a vibrant economic centre within the City, providing residents with greater access to jobs and services near their homes.
Now, in 2015, the CIP is ready for businesses to take advantage of.
It will take the cooperation of the city’s Economic Development and Innovation team, led by Saad Bashir, existing local businesses, the community and businesses looking to make a mark in Ottawa’s west end.
The federal government has committed to relocating 8,500 Department of National Defense employees to the former Nortel building before the end of 2018 which will help to spur growth in this part of town and encourage development.
I will continue to encourage our partners within the business community and at the City to support and grow this CIP. Economic Development is one of my main priorities as Deputy Mayor.
For further information about the Carling Avenue Community Improvement Plan, please visit ottawa.ca.