Some football and soccer games have already happened, but Lansdowne Park is now officially open after a ceremony Friday afternoon.
Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson and Capital Ward Coun. David Chernushenko cut the ribbon, joined by members of the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group, other city councillors, and others involved in the design and construction of the area.
Mr. Watson called the park “extraordinary.”
“This new park is rooted in the heritage of Lansdowne and our community,” he said in a statement. “At the same time it has been transformed into a modern, urban destination that will resonate in the hearts and minds of visitors as much as the former fairgrounds did for past generations.”
The new Lansdowne has three times more green space than before and four times more trees. There are also 20 event spaces for community use around the 18-acre expanse.
“Our community is happy to see this additional green space at Lansdowne,” said Mr. Chernushenko in a statement. “It will be a great space for both recreation and relaxation. And with connections between Bank Street, the Rideau Canal and many cycling and walking pathways, the park will help unite residents of nearby neighbourhoods.”
“The development and planning for the new Lansdowne showed us that good design matters,” said Alta Vista Coun. Peter Hume, chair of the planning committee.
Now that the park has been officially opened, the public is invited to a carnival and picnic to celebrate the opening on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
And while residents can enjoy the green space and sporting events, shoppers will have to wait until fall for the first store to open its doors for business.