Mayor leads tour of OAG expansion, Arts Court Redevelopment project

Calling it “a new chapter in Ottawa’s cultural history,” Mayor Jim Watson led a tour Friday of the Ottawa Art Gallery expansion and Arts Court redevelopment construction site.

“The progress we’ve seen today is preparing the foundation of a long-standing vision for a municipal arts centre for the visual, performing, literary and media arts and for the revitalization of Ottawa’s downtown that will be celebrated for years to come,” Mr. Watson said in a statement.

With construction in the excavation stage, crews are using controlled blasts to excavate a deeper space for the parking structure. The first concrete pour is expected in December and the mayor said the project will be complete in time for the the country’s 150th birthday party in 2017.

The project will result in a larger OAG and Arts Court expanded on to city-owned land on the corner of Daly Avenue and Waller Street. A public-private investment of more than $100 million will see a 21-storey tower at 60-70 Waller St., with Le Germain Hotel occupying space up to the 14th floor and condos from Montreal-based DevMcGill taking the upper floors.

The redeveloped space will also include a 250-seat multi-purpose and film screening room, along with a new 120-seat theatre and four classrooms for the University of Ottawa.