Deal reached for former Rockcliffe base

The former CFB Rockcliffe site has been sold to the Canada Lands Company for $27.2 million, the Sun has learned.

“We’re the land owner and developer,” said CLC vice-president Gordon McIvor.

Redevelopment of the lucrative real estate in north Ottawa is back on the table after being tied up in a land claim with the Algonquins of Ontario since 2007.

“That was resolved,” said McIvor.

The CLC and the AOO have entered into a Participation Agreement.

“We want them to be able to, if they want, develop a piece of the property following the guidelines that have been approved by the city and by Canada Lands,” said CLC president and CEO Mark Laroche.

The deal between the land company and natives is worth $10 million.

The Department of National Defence no longer runs the site.

“This is the most significant and important property that we’ve purchased in the last 10 years,” McIvor said.

And it took about 10 years to obtain the 310-acre land, which was transferred on March 28.

Prior to that, DND has been maintaining the former airforce base.

In the last four years, the federal government has shelled out more than $5 million — footed by taxpayers — for the site, which once housed almost 500 military families.

CFB Rockcliffe officially closed July 31, 2009.

Since then, security costs in the 2009-10 fiscal year totalled $92,024.66.

The amount spent on maintenance has decreased significantly from 2008-09 when $2.1 million was doled out. In 2007-08 the price tag to maintain the site was $2.7 million. The year before that it cost $3.3 million.

Now it’s in the CLC’s hands.

A land use plan will be created and will ultimately determine the overall value of the property.

If the entire site is used for housing, McIvor said, its worth would differ greatly than mixed use development.

Five years ago, the Rockcliffe Landing project was pitched, calling for the creation of roughly 5,000 housing units, stores and offices in eight neighbourhoods.

Public consultation is slated for late fall or early spring.

“Then we get into the master planning and getting all the approvals,” Laroche said.

“You’re looking typically at not selling lots before two or three years down the road.”

The redevelopment could be a great thing for the city, said Ottawa-Vanier MP Mauril Belanger.

“It can be, if done right.”

McIvor said the city is “in the driver’s seat.”

kelly.roche@sunmedia.ca

@ottawasunkroche

DEPARTMENT OF NATIONAL DEFENCE & CANADIAN FORCES MAINTENANCE COSTS:

  • ROCKCLIFFE – OTTAWA
  • YEAR    AMOUNT
  • 2009-10 $92,024.66
  • 2008-09 $2,175,976.06
  • 2007-08 $2,749,128.14
  • 2006-07 $3,332,273.55

http://www.ottawasun.com/2011/05/24/deal-reached-for-former-rockcliffe-base

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