Bore Hole Drilling at City Centre Complex

The City Centre complex is a combo office tower and industrial bays located on City Centre Avenue just east of and south of Bayview Station. Built in 1960 as part of the federal-funded railway relocation project, it was a intermodal terminal for offloading rail cars onto delivery trucks. Now it is industrial bays, with a surprisingly large number of printers located there. The largest tennant in the whole complex is my old company, Cielo Print.
All last week there were two drilling rigs working the parking lot, drilling bore holes around the perimeter of the parking lot along City Centre Avenue and up close to the building. Surely, after so many delays, the owner, Equity Management, isn’t planning to resurrect the 2 million square foot office-residential already-approved plans for the site?
Or maybe they are just drilling for other purposes. Whatever, the project is unlikely to appear soon since it depends on a decided transitway LRT alignment and Otrain right of way project, both of which the City seems unable to make its mind upon. In any case, the tennants do not have demolition clauses in their leases, so it could easily take a decade to vacate the bays.
The plans made a 15 years ago had the first (smallest) tower being built in the parking lot east of the existing tower, so no demoliton was necessary. Tower 2 was to be at the south end of the parking lot along Somerset, and only it or tower 3 actually required demolishing the southmost bays in order to proceed. More problematic, is who would rent all this space with the industrial uses still scattered amongst the new towers.
Note that Phoenix DCR bought the vacant triangle of land to the north, 801 Albert Street, and is pushing the city for approval to build two 30 storey condo towers. Most motorists and passersby do not realize how very close this site is to the Ottawa River (Nepean Bay, unfortunately a lot of it was filled in while implementing Greber’s plans) which means great views from the condo.
The whole beehive of interest in this area (recall earlier posts on Arnon’s proposed developments at the 855 Carling end of the Otrain corridor) reminds of me of the City’s dumb decision to postpone the Carling – Bayview CDP which was to implement a coherent zoning and development vision for this whole underutilized corridor. Rumours abound the CDP is getting back on track, but nothing is firm yet.

One thought on “Bore Hole Drilling at City Centre Complex

  1. Heavens. Let’s hope that this architectural masterpiece is preserved to show future generations the pinnacle of our achievements, a la Ozymandias… [sarcasm off]

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