Over arching concern

As land values increase and it becomes more urgent to maximize development potential. This necessarily causes architects and developers to focus on the space above driveways.

The result has been a spate of “carriageways” or porticos.

Sometimes these are on large buildings, such as Claridge has built on the Flats

and is proposing for the project at Richmond/Kirkwood. Recall too that Ashcroft is proposing two pedestrian porticos from Richmond into the Our Lady of the Condos site.

Here is a simple driveway entering a tiny courtyard with six or so garages. The “flatiron” rooms above it are interesting. It is on Gladstone:

And there is another development coming, this time on Booth, designed by Hobin, where the carriageway entrance goes into a mews with another row of townhouses in the back. Simple, neat, attractive. And the laneway is only one storey high.

But just a block away, on Rochester, the developer there insists that he could not ever possibly build carriageway entrances to his project because… Well, because they would have to be at least 16′ high, be fire-proof, be big enough for fire trucks, be very wide, and all sorts of other too-expensive provisions. Thus the site layout could not be improved as the community association suggested. I wonder why Fotenn chose to take this “can’t be done” route when it is becoming so popular for others?

Sometimes small minds are found in the largest developer agencies; and the neighborhood misses out.

And here is the grand-daddy arch of them all, Rowe’s Wharf in Boston. It is big enough to span a whole street. Speaking of which, when will we see something like that in Ottawa?

3 thoughts on “Over arching concern

  1. Carriageways can be nice, depending on how they are designed. But when they lead to parking lots at the back, they tend to generate a lot more asphalt (turning radius, etc.) which leads to more impermeable surfaces, which we really don’t need in this region. As a neighbour, I would rather have trees and lanscaping at the back rather than a parking lot. I live next to several lots where the back yards have been paved to allow for parking – trust me, I’d much rather the cars be parked at the front.

    1. I very much agree with you, it all depends on the exact application to a specific site. I regret when cars are parked in back yards, packing down the soil, or worse yet paved over.In addition to the noise of cars in front, beside, and behind the houses, people wash their cars or blast their car sound systems for hours while they “party”. When there is a back alley, and then garages, this works better.
      In the case of Booth Street, the carriageway is to a mews, paved, between the two rows of houses, with no room for exterior parking, just access to the garages. I think it should work pretty well in this case for car access and for kids playing on bikes and trikes and hopscotch.

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