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Canada’s largest net-zero carbon residential community to include affordable units

Multifamily Housing

Canada’s largest net-zero carbon residential community to include affordable units

The two towers in Ottawa will form striking gateway into LeBreton Flats.


By Peter Fabris, Contributing Editor | December 7, 2022
Consisting of two towers, the buildings will form a striking gateway into LeBreton Flats. Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton
Consisting of two towers, the buildings will form a striking gateway into LeBreton Flats. Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton

The newly unveiled design for Canada’s largest net-zero carbon residential community includes two towers that will create a new destination within Ottawa and form a striking gateway into LeBreton Flats. The development will be transit-oriented, mixed-income, mixed-use, and include unprecedented sustainability targets. Dream LeBreton is a partnership between real estate companies Dream Asset Management, Dream Impact, and local non-profit MultiFaith Housing Initiative.

The 2.5-acre Library Parcel site will become one of the first developments in the growing neighborhood that is part of the National Capital Commission’s Master Concept Plan. Consisting of two towers, 31 and 36 stories, the buildings will include 601 rental units, 41% of which will be classified as affordable.

The 247 affordable units will be earmarked for five target populations in need: Indigenous communities; women and children; immigrants/newcomers; veterans; and adults with cognitive disabilities. Of these, 132 will be operated and owned by MultiFaith Housing Initiative.

Perkins and Will and KPMB Architects designed the towers’ façade in collaboration with renowned Canadian artist Margaret Priest. Inspired by the Laurentian Forest and the historic red brick homes in neighboring communities, the façades will be cloaked in a vibrant red.

The all-season ground level offers a myriad of opportunities to host ceremonies, events, public art, and more. Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton
The all-season ground level offers a myriad of opportunities to host ceremonies, events, public art, and more. Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton

As the towers rise, the colors lighten, creating a slender appearance and drawing the eye to the sky. Taking advantage of the site’s location, the towers are intentionally rotated and offset to one another, ensuring all units benefit from beautiful views of Ottawa’s key landmarks, including Parliament Hill, Gatineau River, and Dow’s Lake.

Six-story podiums that terrace down will reveal a large active ground level that pays homage to indigenous principles and histories. Envisioned as a central gathering place, the all-season ground level offers opportunities to host ceremonies, events, public art, and serves as a vibrant destination for socializing and meeting.

Through a deep engagement process led by Innovation Seven with Indigenous elders, youth, and community members, the team will further develop and incorporate sacred and culturally significant features.

The community will be operationally net-zero carbon, LEED Gold, and One Planet Living accredited. To achieve these ambitious sustainability targets, the team will employ a high-performance building envelope, integrated photovoltaic solar panels, and natural daylight harvesting enhanced by the buildings’ orientations. In addition, natural plantings and non-toxic, regionally sourced materials will be used throughout the design.

On the project team:
Owner and/or developer: Dream LeBreton
Architects: Perkins and Will, KPMB
MEP engineer: Smith+Andersen
Structural engineer: RJC
Civil engineer: TY Lin
General contractor/construction manager: ElisDon

Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton
The Library Parcel is set to break ground in Spring 2023. Rendering courtesy Dream LeBreton

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