The Ottawa Public Library (OPL) has received City Council approval to develop a new 216,000 sq. ft. Ottawa Central Library joint facility with Library and Archives Canada (LAC) at 557 Wellington St. City Council further approved a design-bid-build procurement process in order to ensure maximum control over the facility design, as well as approval in principle for the City-funded portion ($99 million) of the $168 million facility.
“A new central library in the heart of the National Capital Region will have a positive impact on our city,” said Tim Tierney, chair of the Ottawa Public Library Board and councillor for Beacon Hill – Cyrville. “And, the collaboration with Library and Archives Canada is a unique opportunity to elevate the cultural significance of this facility and give it national stature.”
The library board believes the new central librarywill be a “creative placemaker” that inspires learning, sparks curiosity, and connects people. The joint facility will be a one-of-a-kind destination for residents and visitors – both a civic and national landmark.
Today’s decision gives approval in principle, and authority to proceed with next steps, including:
- Negotiation of the Relationship Agreement with Library and Archives Canada;
- Development of a funding strategy, including seeking both federal and provincial infrastructure grants, before final project authority is provided;
- Investigation of options to dispose of the existing assets at 120 Metcalfe St./191 Laurier Ave. W.;
- Initiation of the procurement process for design (pending final project authority); and,
- Completion of a detailed study into parking requirements for the joint facility.
The Government of Canada will make a decision regarding LAC’s participation in the joint facility in spring 2017.