Thursday, 7 April 2011

Ottawa City Archives progress

Delays in the completion of the building housing the new Ottawa City Archives have pushed back the timeframe for the facility opening to the public. The original schedule had the bulding ready for occupancy at the start of 2011. As can be seen from this photo, taken from Tallwood on 5 April 2011 there is work still to do, but progress is evident since my last visit four weeks ago.

The second photo, taken from the south side, where the parking lot was full to overflowing, shows that less work appears to need completion. The green covered orange scaffold at the lower right (east end) of the building is in front of a temporary entrance for people working inside who, from their apparel, did not appear to be construction trades.

The Archives partner libraries remain closed and inaccessible. Some delay in opening to the public after the original move-in at the start of the year had been anticipated. It was always my view that the original schedule to reopen was overly optimistic. It is worth the extra wait to allow staff to get things in order.

According to a city briefing note about the 92,000-square-foot building, "the materials used feature high recycled content and rapidly renewable resources. These include highly durable fibre cement panels on the building's exterior, bamboo flooring, wall panels and doors, cork and linoleum flooring on its interior. In high traffic areas such as the lobby and washrooms, floor tiles from Italy were selected for their quality, durability and price. Other materials include stone stair treads from Owen Sound and brick from the Northern United States."

Archival materials remained at the former archives site through March. The construction schedule maintains the site development work, such as landscaping and public art, being completed by the end of May 2011. The official opening is scheduled for June. 

No comments: