Councillors gave the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. the go-ahead to start soliciting bids for a new local casino. Council also gave its final approval for the redevelopment of Lansdowne Park.
Council has approved all of the legal conditions and budget for the new Lansdowne development, meaning that the bulk of the construction work can begin on the Bank Street location.
The stadium is slated to be completed for the 2014 Canadian Football League season, with the remainder of the redevelopment work to be finished by the summer of 2015.
In partnership with the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group to redevelop Lansdowne, the city has cleared many hurdles including a court case by local activist group Friends of Lansdowne alleging that the city violated procurement rules, the appeal of which was struck down in May.
Pomerleau Inc. was also officially named Wednesday as the contractor to build a new underground parking garage, renovate the stadium, build new stands on the south side of the site and provide overall site management. The work is expected to begin later this month.
EllisDon Corp. and CDS Building Movers are also currently carrying out previously awarded construction contracts on the Lansdowne site.
With a vote of 19 to 5, city councillors expressed their support for a casino in the Ottawa region and gave approval for the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp. to seek bidders for the project.
Ottawa was previously identified by the OLG as a possible host city as it seeks to modernize and expand private sector gaming in the province.
No location for the casino has been determined, but city council retains final approval for zoning which would happen in 2013 after the request for proposals process is complete.
Last month, Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson came out in support of a new casino and proposed dividing any gaming revenues coming back to the city between infrastructure renewal and economic development initiatives.
City staff will develop an analysis of the potential economic benefits of a new gaming facility, and Ottawa Public Health will provide advice on the health effects and social impacts of a casino, according to a city release.