Windows on the world

Buildings must be interesting on the ground floor, that’s one of the key principles of a vibrant city at the sidewalk level. Too many of downtown Ottawa’s buildings are dead at the ground floor.

That’s what makes the Delta Hotel’s renovation of their downtown property so exciting. They are busy tearing off the solid concrete walls of the Skyline  Crowne Plaza Delta and replacing them with windows, windows that actually allow people on the sidewalk to see into the building.

In case you can’t remember, here’s what it used to be:

I remain unthrilled with their Lyon Street facade, though. While no one will miss the awful ramp up to the second floor front doors, the new design may not be all that much better, as it will still have a 100% vehicular front yard. All the windows will be nice, though.

Above: the old Delta. Below, what they are building. Note the isolated pedestrian walk between the parking/drop off zone and the busy street:


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