Op-Ed article

Published on February 27, 2024

Ruisseau de la Brasserie (Brewery Creek)
A boost for downtown Gatineau

When I started working at the NCC, one of my priorities was to move an issue forward that I’ve been passionate about for quite a while: the revitalization of Brewery Creek. I was fully prepared to work on convincing my colleagues on the Board of Directors to take a closer look at the topic. However, I was happy to learn that not only did the NCC and the community share the desire to revive this Gatineau treasure, but also that an inspiring proposal was already on the table.

We're getting there.

From my point of view, it’s obvious that the plan is an important milestone in revitalizing this part of downtown Gatineau. The NCC intends to invest significantly in ground decontamination, restoration of the shoreline and providing people-friendly and scenic access to Brewery Creek. The project will also provide much-needed new housing in Gatineau. We have to revitalize the downtown sector, and I think we are on the right path.

Now is the time for action. As chairperson of the NCC’s Board of Directors, I want to act as a facilitator and rally residents and our decision-makers around this ambitious project.

We’ve been busy since the fall. This issue has been discussed many times in meetings with Gatineau elected officials who share my enthusiasm for the revitalization potential of this key downtown area. We also presented the plan to the Gatineau downtown issues table (Table de concertation du centre-ville de Gatineau). It’s important for us to reach out to the population and, specifically, to people living in this neighbourhood, to hear what they have to say and make sure that we share a common goal.

With this in mind, we recently held a meeting with Vision Centre-Ville, the Gatineau Chamber of Commerce, the Association des residents et résidentes de l’île de Hull and the Association du patrimoine du ruisseau de la Brasserie (Brewery Creek heritage association). Each of these organizations has a role to play in the redevelopment and beautification of the federal lands along the creek.

The NCC is committed to informing the public and consulting with them regarding essential components of the redevelopment plan – which obviously involves reconfiguring public spaces –and what they are hoping for in terms of facilities and services, types of buildings and connectivity in the area. We therefore want to reach out by holding a public consultation on February 29. I am inviting anyone who cares about the revitalization of Brewery Creek to come out and meet with us, ask questions, and share their feedback. We will also be holding an online consultation as another way to be part of the conversation.

Any feedback we receive from these consultations will be compiled and shared with our project team. We will be taking this into consideration in our request to update the Ville de Gatineau special urban planning program and to amend the Ottawa River North Shore Parklands Plan.

This is a defining moment: we all want to breathe new life into the downtown. Together, we have a unique opportunity to connect the foundry project with the Zibi and LeBreton Flats developments, in order to create a new destination, the Brewery Creek shoreline, where we can live and enjoy the waterfront. Together, let’s move this worthwhile project forward and bring new life to a gem that lies right in the heart of downtown Gatineau.

Maryse Gaudreault,
Chairperson of the Board of Directors
National Capital Commission

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