• Preferred proponent recommended to design new central library

    Ottawa –– After a review of 33 submissions from architectural firms from around the world, and a shortlist of five finalists, the Evaluation Committee for the new joint facility shared by Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada has recommended entering into negotiations with the consortium of Diamond Schmitt Architects and KWC Architects, from Toronto and Ottawa, respectively.

    Following a two-phase procurement process for professional design services that was overseen by an external Fairness Commissioner, Diamond Schmitt Architects – KWC Architects, as the highest-ranked proponent, has been selected to work with the public and partners to design the joint facility.

    In 2017, City Council and the Ottawa Public Library Board approved partnering with Library and Archives Canada to build a new joint facility to serve as a national institution, a city-wide resource and a community gathering space.

    This collaboration will provide the Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada with a unique, state-of-the-art facility that brings together the creative services of a public library and the public services of a national library and archives for a richer customer experience. The total project budget, including parking, is $192.9 million.

    The facility site, located at the corner of Albert Street and Commissioner Street at the southeastern edge of LeBreton Flats, within 300 metres from the Confederation Line’s Pimisi Station, has been designated with a new address: 555 Albert Street (formerly 557 Wellington Street).

    The Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada joint facility is expected to open in 2024.

    Quotes

    “We are thrilled to see such a qualified preferred proponent with expertise in creating inspirational designs be selected through this competitive process. With Library and Archives Canada as our partner, Ottawa’s new central library will become an iconic, world-class cultural and architectural destination that offers a unique experience for residents and visitors to the nation’s capital.”
    Mayor Jim Watson

    “On behalf of the Government of Canada, I applaud this latest milestone, which brings us one step closer to seeing a cutting-edge facility take shape in the heart of the nation’s capital. We are proud to be playing an important role in creating a showplace for Canada’s culture and heritage, which will be enjoyed by both local residents and Canadians from across the country who are visiting Ottawa.”
    The Honourable Pablo Rodriguez, Minister of Canadian Heritage and Multiculturalism

    “It’s exciting to see that the recommended architectural team has a track record of design excellence on social, cultural, and educational buildings. Ottawa’s new central library will be an essential public space, and a key destination for generations to come. A place where together we can gather, learn, read, play, be challenged, connect, and relax.”
    Tim Tierney, Chair, Ottawa Public Library Board

    Websites:

    Ottawa Central Library
    Library and Archives Canada
    Developing LeBreton Flats

  • Future site of new central library to be local and national destination

    Ottawa – At a ceremony held today, Mayor Jim Watson and The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, on behalf of The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage, with Councillor Tim Tierney, Chair of the Ottawa Public Library Board, dedicated the future home of a joint facility shared by the Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada. Dignitaries unveiled a sign designating the site at the corner of Albert Street and Commissioner Street.

    In 2017, City Council and the Ottawa Public Library Board approved partnering with Library and Archives Canada to build a new joint facility, which will serve as a national institution, a city-wide resource, and a community gathering space.

    Located at the eastern edge of LeBreton Flats, the new facility will be located near homes and businesses, as well as green spaces, including the Garden of the Provinces. In addition, light rail will figure prominently into access to this new facility, as Pimisi Station is less than 300 metres away.

    Pedestrian access will be improved with planned road and intersection modifications along the Albert and Slater corridor. These will facilitate movement and support integration with the Central Business District and residential neighbourhoods to the east and south.

    This unique partnership will provide the Ottawa Public Library and Library and Archives Canada with a unique, state-of-the-art facility that brings together the creative services of a public library and the public services of a national library and archives for a richer customer experience.

    Expected to open in 2024, this new facility will be a modern, iconic building and destination that will be designed by a renowned architectural team working with the City and the public on the look, feel and user experience of the building.

    Quotes

    “The new central library will benefit residents of Ottawa and visitors for generations to come. It will be an important hub in our city and an anchor for the whole community. Our collaboration with Library and Archives Canada will create a civic and national institution where residents can gather, learn, be inspired, and connect with the world and each other.”
    Mayor Jim Watson, City of Ottawa 

    “Canada’s history and heritage are irreplaceable treasures that we must preserve with the utmost respect. This new joint facility will be a building of which all Canadians can be proud. It will be an invaluable resource for those seeking knowledge—or those just looking to curl up with a good book.”
    The Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage

    “This new facility in the heart of Ottawa is an excellent example of the partnership and co-operation between federal and municipal institutions that is a priority for our government. This collaboration will allow us to showcase artifacts highlighting Canada’s history and will make visiting the new central library a richer experience for local residents and visitors to the nation’s capital alike.”
    The Honourable Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change and Member of Parliament (Ottawa Centre)

    “This new facility will be a community gathering space here in Ottawa, bringing people together to learn and exchange ideas. We’re excited to collaborate with Library and Archives Canada to provide innovative services and a rich customer experience in a modern space.”
    Councillor Tim Tierney, Chair, Ottawa Public Library Board

     

    Websites:
    Ottawa Central Library
    Library and Archives Canada
    Developing LeBreton Flats

  • City announces shortlist of five teams to design new central library

    Ottawa – A new milestone has been achieved in the project to create a new Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada joint facility. A City of Ottawa Request for Qualifications (RFQ) process for professional design services, initiated in May of 2017, has resulted in the selection of five shortlisted teams from 33 submissions received. The shortlisted teams have been invited to participate in the Request for Proposals (RFP) process.

    The shortlisted teams are (in alphabetical order):

    • Bing Thom Architects (Canada) – GRC Architects (Canada)
    • Diamond Schmitt Architects (Canada) – KWC Architects (Canada)
    • Mecanoo International b.v. (Holland) – NORR Architects & Engineers Ltd (Canada)
    • Patkau Architects (Canada) – MSDL Architects (Canada) – GRC Architects (Canada)
    • Schmidt/hammer/lassen/ architects (Denmark) – KPMB Architects (Canada) – Hobin Architecture Inc. (Canada)

    As outlined as a requirement in the RFQ, the shortlisted teams have demonstrated a proven track record in architectural design excellence with projects of a similar size, scope and complexity, and relevant experience in buildings of national, provincial, institutional or civic importance – including libraries, archives, cultural institutions, performing arts centres or museums. 

    Quotes

    “This is an exciting next step forward in realizing a longstanding vision for a new central library. We are pleased to see that the competitive procurement process has produced a shortlist of stellar architectural talent from across the region, the nation and around the globe. This is a unique opportunity to create a landmark institution in our national capital; one that will serve the needs of residents as a community library branch and city-wide resource, while offering all Canadians access to Library and Archives Canada’s public-facing services and their rich and diverse collection.”
    Mayor Jim Watson, City of Ottawa

    “The first phase of the procurement process has produced an excellent shortlist of proponents for the architectural design services.  This brings us another step closer to making an iconic Ottawa Central Library a reality. In 2015 and 2016, we heard what spaces and services our community would like in a new facility. We know residents are eager to share ideas on the design, and we look forward to engaging them.”
    Councillor Tim Tierney, Chair of the Ottawa Public Library Board

    About the Ottawa Public Library – Library and Archives Canada joint facility

    On February 8, 2017, City Council approved pursuing a joint facility between Ottawa Public Library (OPL) and Library Archives Canada (LAC) at 557 Wellington Street.

    The Government of Canada’s 2018 Budget included funding to support Library and Archives Canada’s collaboration with Ottawa Public Library for a joint facility. With this formal federal commitment for LAC’s share of the joint facility, the City of Ottawa, OPL, and LAC are moving forward to create a new facility of national significance.

    A report to City Council and the Ottawa Public Library Board on the OPL-LAC joint facility project is expected in the spring of 2018. The report will include:

    • Governance Agreement between OPL, LAC and the City of Ottawa
    • Funding Strategy for OPL and the City of Ottawa
    • Disposal of existing Main branch
    • Parking Study Recommendations

    Website:
    ottawacentrallibrary.ca