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The Civic development project is now in the second of five required stages of the planning process required by the Ontario Ministry of Health. At this stage we are pleased to share with the public the proposed design of the new cutting-edge campus that will be situated near Dow’s Lake at the foot of the Rideau Canal in Ottawa.

New Civic Development – View of Main Entrance and Research Tower from Carling

Site proposal highlights

  • 641 beds.
  • 5,000+ employees.
  • 2.5 million sq. ft on a 50-acre site.
  • The most advanced trauma centre in Eastern Ontario.
  • A world-class facility that will attract health care professionals, researchers and students from around the world.
  • A one-patient, one bedroom, one-bathroom model for better infection prevention and control, better privacy and better rest.
  • One of the most innovative neuroscience research programs in the world.
  • Research and education integrated into the design to ensure patients benefit from the most advanced and innovative technologies and therapies.
  • An estimated 20,000 jobs created during construction as well as regional economic gains through ancillary businesses, research and training opportunities and health investments.
  • A transit-oriented site, pedestrian and cyclist safe, accessible, with enclosed walkways and greenspace.
  • ‘Smart’ interactive, accessible communication technology.

  • The site at Dow’s Lake was chosen after careful consideration of several sites. A 99-year lease for the site with the federal government was signed in 2018.
  • The Ministry of Health has a strict process for capital planning. If the project were to move to another site the Ministry requires that the process be restarted completely, resulting in a minimum 5-year delay to repeat the already completed parts of the process and develop a new plan that meets requirements.

  • The development is based on a hybrid of leading sustainability models, including the National Capital Commission’s Sustainable Development Strategies, the One Planet Living framework, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, and the WELL Building Standard.
  • Fosters active, social human experience to promote good health, well-being and happiness.
  • A safe environment for pedestrian and cycling routes.
  • Promotion of diversity, inclusion, and equity in employment and training.
  • Environmental gains: cleaner air, reduced energy demand, renewable energy technology, low-carbon fuel sources, a future-proof design to work towards ‘Net-Zero Ready.’

  • Will exceed Ontario’s Health Care Accessibility Standards.
  • Will take into account the new AODA Health Care Standards – 2021 initial recommendations report.
  • All washrooms in all areas of the facility will be universally accessible.
  • The hospital will be easily accessible by enclosed walkways, escalators and moving sidewalks.
  • Para-Transpo, taxis, valets and other alternatives available at the main and emergency entrances.
  • Short-term and accessible parking available at the main and emergency entrances.
  • The Carling Avenue and Preston Street intersection will be re-designed, in compliance with the City of Ottawa Protected Intersection Design Guide, for accessible, safer cycling and pedestrian routes.
  • Restricted access ambulances and emergency vehicles are the only ones permitted to use Maple Drive.

  • The garage will accommodate 2,500 spaces for people who must park as close as possible to the entrance. This includes 72 accessible spaces and 144 spaces for people with limited mobility. It also includes 500 secure bike parking spots.
  • The route from the parking garage to the hospital is at grade, equipped with mobility aids such as moving sidewalks, with a climate-controlled walkway and rest locations.
  • The four-storey garage will be above ground but integrated into the landscape with a berm and a peripheral hedge of trees. It will be buried under 6 to 8 feet of soil that will accommodate a six-acre park on the roof.
  • Construction begins in March 2022, to accommodate parking for about 2,000 construction and trades workers, eliminating parking on local streets.
  • Neither the provincial nor federal government will fund parking at the hospital.

  • The hospital will plant five new trees for every tree that needs to be removed, in partnership with the Central Experimental Farm, Agriculture and Agri-Foods Canada, and the City of Ottawa.
  • An updated Environmental Impact Study and tree count review for the new Civic development completed at the end of July indicates that 523 trees will need to be removed from the site, 157 fewer than initially estimated.

  • The hospital is working with the city to determine the best way to connect Dow’s Lake Station to the new campus, including a protected walkway across Carling or a second rail trench on the south side.
  • The master site plan calls for a south side section of Dow’s Lake Station to accommodate an indoor and outdoor walkway to the parkade and the main hospital building.
  • Construction for the parking garage is scheduled to begin in March 2022, at the same time the rail trench is being built for Dow’s Lake Station.

Accessing the site

The main entrance will be accessed directly off Carling Avenue, up the escarpment to arrive at a circular drive drop-off at the front door. Directly below the front door, under a covered green roof, will be the Emergency Department entrance, one floor beneath grade, for patient drop-off and triage. Covered and protected temporary parking will be available for Emergency patients and visitors.

Ambulance traffic will use separate, dedicated access routes the lead directly to the protected Emergency garage.

The Dow’s Lake light rail transit station will be connected to the site by a covered, accessible walkway. This walkway will also connect the research tower, medical office buildings, and the green-roofed parking garage on the lower portion of the site, so that people can move safely and comfortably through the site.

View from Dow's Lake

Inside the new hospital

The main entranceway will feature a central light well with double-storied glass, letting in an abundance of natural light. Intuitive wayfinding will help people move through the entrance to their destination within the hospital. Frequently used services such as pharmacy, medical imaging, patient registration, ambulatory care specimen collection centre, and other programs will be housed near the entrance.

The seven-floor north tower and eleven-floor south tower will bracket the atrium and will house outpatient care clinics and inpatient units. The helipad will sit on top of the south tower with dedicated trauma elevators that reach all floors, particularly the Emergency Department, surgical suites, diagnostic and interventional imaging, and critical care.

The lower floor will include the loading docks, materials management, segregated soiled and clean distribution areas, food services, environmental services – all components that will serve each of the different departments.

Main Entrance

Robotic technology will support transportation workers and other staff. Goods and services will come across the basement floor and be transported up high-speed traction elevators with the least amount of disruption or crossover with the public.

Elevator lobbies will serve the public and the staff in a way that allows for maximum flexibility for the floor plates in the future. Front-of-house traffic will be segregated for the public, whereas back of house traffic will be reserved for staff, services, and patient transfers. As health-care services change in the future, the building can readily adapt to new demands.

View from Main Entrance towards Carling