Developer floats plan to turn pair of buildings in Centretown heritage zone into apartment complex

Zyer McLeod St. development

An Ottawa developer’s proposal for a multi-residential complex in Centretown would restore one of the buildings currently occupying the site to its early 20th-century appearance while the newer building next door would be demolished.

Zyer Developments has applied to build an eight-storey apartment building with 30 residential units at 283 and 285 McLeod St., just east of O’Connor Street. 

A pair of three-storey commercial buildings currently occupy the P-shaped property in the Centretown Heritage Conservation District. 

The developer is proposing to tear down the existing building at 283 McLeod St., which was built between 1925 and 1946. Meanwhile, Zyer says the building at 285 McLeod would be “restored to its original appearance and detailing” from the early 1900s in a style the builder says would “complement” similar historic residential properties at nearby 287 and 289 McLeod St.

The restored building would include a single three-storey residence, with a podium containing a pair of additional residential suites replacing the demolished structure next door. A new eight-storey midrise complex with 27 apartment units would be constructed over the heritage building at 285 McLeod, with the upper floors stepped back from the street.

An underground parking lot would include spaces for 11 vehicles, with two spots reserved for visitors. The plan also calls for indoor and outdoor amenity spaces.

In a planning brief filed with the city, Zyer says the proposal complies with current heritage overlay rules because the building at 283 McLeod St. would be replaced with a structure of similar “scale, massing and floor area.”

The plan will require a zoning amendment because the proposed eight-storey building exceeds current height limits for the property and is taller than the retained heritage building. The developer is also requesting relief from current setback limits.