OCC Board Selects Preferred Proponent -- Work to Begin Imminently

    OTTAWA, Oct. 2 /CNW Telbec/ - Yesterday the Board of the Ottawa Congress
Centre (OCC) selected the preferred proponent to demolish, design, build and
finance the new convention centre that will rise up on the existing site. The
proposal submitted by PCL Constructors and Brisbin Brook Beynon Architects
(BBB) was selected over the competing proposal by EllisDon Corporation and
Parkin Architects Limited.
    "After careful analysis and review, the Board concluded that the proposal
from PCL and BBB best demonstrated the capability to create an iconic landmark
for the city of Ottawa," said Jim Durrell, Chair of the OCC Board. "This
proponent met the rigourous specifications set out in our Request for
Proposals, and in many instances exceeded them."
    The core design features a complex, crystalline building, shaped in a
tulip form laid on its side, to reflect one of the most prominent and
beautiful symbols of the city of Ottawa. The elegant crystal building is
300 feet in length, with an airy, inviting ambience. Its modern design is
intended to sit gracefully in the historic downtown core of Ottawa, and
enhance the beauty of the east side of the Rideau Canal.
    "The crystal design is in such stark contrast to the gray, concealed
building we now have as our convention facility," said Patrick Kelly,
President of the OCC. "We will, in effect, finally balance the beauty of the
west side of the Canal with a facility and landscaping deserving of the
    One of the key elements of the design is the ability for visitors to
Ottawa to look out on the Parliament Buildings, the Rideau Canal, the National
Art Gallery, and the many beautiful historic sites that define the city of
Ottawa. Meeting and convention participants will be visible within the
building, and organizations will be able to market themselves to all who pass
by the new centre.
    "All people coming to Ottawa will be constantly looking out at Ottawa,"
said Mr. Durrell. "It will not be long before visitors to the new facility
will be telling others across Canada, and around the world, about their
experience in Canada's new meeting place. We couldn't be more delighted with
the outcome."
    The colour palette within the interior of the facility will reflect the
colours of the Ottawa- Gatineau landscape throughout the four seasons,
particularly during the fall season when the scenery in the Ottawa-Gatineau
region is among the most vibrant anywhere in the country.
    The OCC had several objectives and key success criteria for the winning
proponent to meet. They include working within a budget of $159 million to
deliver a state-of-the-art convention centre, and the creation of an iconic
solution in a sustainable design and development that is energy and
environmentally efficient.
    The redeveloped facility is expected to meet or exceed every
specification set out in the Request for Proposals, and be completed on time
and within budget. The proposal needed as well to include new, innovative
revenue sources, and serve as a catalyst in the revitalization of Ottawa's
downtown core.
    Roadwork on Colonel By Drive is expected to begin imminently. Preparation
for demolition is expected to start at the end of October. Demolition will
take approximately six months, with construction of the new facility expected
to begin in March 2009. The new OCC will open in the spring of 2011.

    GBA, under the leadership of Graham Bird, is responsible for managing the
redevelopment process of the OCC. Ongoing information on this process is
available at www.ottawacongresscentre.com, or at www.gbassociates.ca.

For further information:

For further information: Kathryn Hendrick, (416) 233-3023,

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