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Ottawa councillors sign off on $9 million for developers

Money will go to developer to clean-up land.

Rendering of the proposed site plan for 900 Albert St. The city awarded the Trinity Group over $9 million in incentives relating to the development.

Trinity Development Group

Rendering of the proposed site plan for 900 Albert St. The city awarded the Trinity Group over $9 million in incentives relating to the development.

City council approved over $9 million in incentives Wednesday to a developer planning a massive condo project near the future Bayview LRT station.

The developer, Trinity Group, is planning to build three condo towers at 900 Albert St., The towers will contain over 1,600 residential units and will include both retail and office space.

The $9 million comprises $8.2 million in brownfield development grants—money given to developers who agree to clean up contaminated land—over the next 10 years.

It also includes a deal to waive a $920,000 fee for the use of city land. There are pipes and sewers crossing the property, which the developer will move on to city property. The normal policy is to charge market value for that land, but in this case the city has agreed to bring the price down to a nominal $1.

That $920,000 has been a point of contention for Coun. Catherine McKenney, who told the finance and economic development committee last week that "we are going to give land away for a million dollars, and I would just like to know if in fact the applicant is looking at the public realm and the benefits to the community."

Located at what will soon be the junction of the city's two LRT lines, the project has been called "council's poster child" of transit-oriented development by director of planning services Lee Ann Snedden.

Council voted nearly unanimously to approve the deal, with McKenney as the only dissenting vote.

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