Committees refer new Lansdowne plan to Council for decision

At a joint meeting today, the Finance and Corporate Services Committee and the Planning and Housing Committee referred the plan for Lansdowne 2.0(link is external) to Council for consideration on Friday, November 10. This includes a revised concept plan and funding structure to build a new event centre, north side stands, a two-storey retail space and two residential towers.

The Lansdowne plan, which originally included three residential towers, was revised to reflect feedback received from the public. The residential tower closest to Aberdeen Pavilion has been removed and the two remaining towers would be 40 and 25 storeys. Removing one tower also creates an opportunity to introduce about 27,900 square metres of new public realm space adjacent to Aberdeen Pavilion. The updated plan reduces proposed housing on the site from 1,200 to 770 dwellings, and parking from 739 to 336 spaces. It reduces the available commercial space to 49,000 square feet from an original plan for 108,000 square feet.

The new event centre will accommodate nearly 4,700 general admission seats, more than 800 premium seats and standing room for 700. Seating capacity will be 5,500 for hockey games and 6,500 for concert events, with extra capacity available using retractable and flexible seating. The redesigned north side stands would see seating capacity reduced from 14,000 to 11,000, plus standing room for 900.

Over the next 10 years, the City would request capital funding through the annual budget process to enhance the urban park at Lansdowne. There is currently 170,000 square feet of green space, including the berm and, when the event centre is built, that will be reduced to 118,000 square feet of open space. That will be augmented by the additional 27,900 square feet of new public realm space for a total of 145,900 square feet of green and public realm space.  

Staff recommend that 10 per cent of the property rights be allocated to affordable housing. The remaining 15 per cent, which would normally be deducted according to the City’s Integrated Transition to Housing Strategy, would be exempt. Allocating 10 per cent would provide the City an additional $3.9 million that can be used immediately towards the City’s affordable housing priority list.

The total capital cost for the City is estimated at approximately $419 million. This estimate includes the cost of preliminary works, construction, costs related to design and delivery, escalation allowances and contingency costs. The City will invest $419.1 million in assets for a net debt servicing requirement of $5.0 million. This equates to $95.4 million in net present value terms. That means taxpayers would be getting a $419.1-million asset for a net cost of $95.4 million.

More background information on the project is available on the Lansdowne public engagement site(link is external).

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