(Source: The Kingston Whig Standard

It’s a prime piece of land aching to be developed.

The former bustling Canadian Forces Base Rockcliffe has come to exude a ghost town-like feel after the departure of military personnel over the past decade.

Of the 468 housing units on the base, 24 are currently occupied with 20 being used by the city as short-term transition housing for social housing tenants. There are also four buildings and several garages.

Most of the base’s structures have been left alone to face the effects of time and weather.

Earlier this month, the Department of National Defence, which retains ownership of the property, announced it was closing the base for good. The remaining residents will be relocated as of July 31.

DND says the site will be secured to prevent security risks and property damage. Houses will be boarded up and utilities will be disconnected.

The decision to shutter the site two years ahead of schedule was made based on the deterioration of the buildings.

The 330-acre property is a rare development gem because it’s one of the largest unused pieces of land within the Greenbelt.

The land remains a DND asset for the interim. The department plans to sell the property to the Canada Lands Company — a Crown corporation that sells surplus federal property to the private sector — with about 25 acres going to the National Capital Commission.

Read Laura Czekaj’s full article “Development of prime, 330-acre piece of Ottawa real estate remains in limbo” in The Kingston Whig Standard (May 25, 2009).

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