The Finance and Corporate Services Committee today approved the City’s first nightlife economy action plan to develop and promote nightlife activities and experiences between 6 pm and 6 am, and create a more vibrant, diverse, inclusive, viable, safe and well-managed nightlife across the city.
Ottawa’s nightlife economy accounted for more than $1.5 billion in spending in 2019, compared to daytime spending totalling $5.5 billion, almost 30 per cent of daytime spending. Vibrant nightlife economies improve job creation, attract talent and investment, economic growth, tourism and city brand building. The plan comes at a perfect time as the city is in the midst of projects like LeBreton Flats, Lansdowne 2.0, and both the ByWard Market and Sparks Street public realm plans.
In 2023, the action plan will:
- Establish the framework for a Nightlife Commissioner Office for implementation in 2024;
- Promote citywide and neighbourhood-by-neighbourhood participation of residents, visitors and businesses in the nightlife economy; and
- Consider changes to support the nightlife economy through reviews of City by-laws, policies, procedures and services.
Additional action plan recommendations will be delivered through the Nightlife Commissioner Office. Staff will provide an update on the progress of the action plan by the end of 2024.
The Committee also received the 2021 and 2022 Lansdowne Annual Report. The report outlines the use of delegated authority at Lansdowne and meetings between the City and the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG). It also provides updates on the partnership site operations and the urban park programming.
Operationally, the last two years have been challenging for Lansdowne due to COVID-19. While attendance and revenues have started to increase again, they remain below pre-pandemic levels. The updated 2022/2023 projections show a decrease to $326 million in waterfall distributions over the 40-year period, compared to the 2021/2022 projection. This is higher than projections from the outset of the project, but the City is still not anticipated to receive any distributions from the partnership over the 40-year term of the agreement as OSEG is not expected to recover all the equity it has contributed to date.
Items from today’s meeting will rise to Council on Wednesday, May 10.