Greening Our Urban Environments


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On March 25th at Algonquin College, Jeff Westeinde will be leading an open forum regarding the Isles development in room T102 from 2:30 – 3:30 PM.

Algonquin College will be working with Windmill to develop a variety of eco-efficient options to include in the design of this site. Windmill Development Group and Algonquin College encourages anyone with a keen interest in the rejuvenation of the Gatineau-Ottawa waterfront to attend the forum.

Click here to register for this event

Map of Algonquin College

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There will be hints of inspiration from some of the most predominant, forward thinking leaders in sustainable development as Ottawa-Gatineau’s waterfront is transformed into a world-class eco-community. In the pursuit of implementing leading green building practices into the design of the recently purchased Domtar lands, the Partners at Windmill Development embarked on an adventurous pursuit for innovative ideas from 7 sustainable communities. Between February 9th and 14th they travelled to the Netherlands, Austria, Sweden and Denmark, on what was dubbed the ”WhirlWindmill” tour; the travel itinerary certainly supports this moniker.

Rich in both innovation and charm, Malmo Sweden seems to have been the highlight of the trip for the majority of Partners. Jeff Westeinde describes this unique city as “exceptional in the intimacy that the public spaces and building scale created”, building confidence that you don’t have to be a medieval village in order to achieve a great sense of space.  Alex Spiegel, who hails from our Toronto office, agrees that Malmo is unrivaled from an urban design perspective; however, he also praised all of the cities for their exceptional mix of modern efficiency and environmental sensitivity. Seamless transit systems, substantial investment in bicycle networks and a human scale that made walking a delight were trademarks of efficient, eco-community development.

Amsterdam, Holland: Wonderful World of Woonefs! A woonerf is a low-speed street where pedestrians and cyclists have legal priority over drivers. In practice, cars, bikes, and people on foot mix freely.

Amsterdam, Holland: Wonderful World of Woonerfs! A woonerf is a low-speed street where pedestrians and cyclists have legal priority over drivers. In practice, cars, bikes, and people on foot mix freely.

Consensus was much more difficult to come by when it came to identifying the most impressive green building technique found within these communities. This speaks to the range of diverse practices that our travellers encountered on their journey. From the waste and storm water management systems in Hammarby, to the tour of KLH’s four-storey headquarters in Austria, which is built from cross-laminated timber (CLT), there was an abundance of innovative sustainable design practices to explore. Scott Demark is convinced that CLT is the construction technology of the future, the ideal structural system for Canada, and, a perfect fit for the Domtar site. While Canadian building codes have yet to catch up to those of Europe, Windmill will be on the leading edge of deploying this type of technology throughout the course of this development.

Rodney Wilts, who passes this site on his daily commute from Chelsea, believes that much like some of their European counterparts, Windmill has the unique opportunity to present a blend of old and new by incorporating existing heritage buildings with contemporary and innovative architecture. The proximity to downtown Gatineau and Ottawa also allows for a vibrant retail scene within the development. On the Domtar Lands, Windmill will strive for a carbon-netural existence by providing renewable energy to meet all of the requirements for the businesses and residents within the development.

Malmo, Sweden : The public realm in Malmo is outstanding - there is a mix of building typologies, and the slight modifications from a typical square grid create charming streetscapes.

Malmo, Sweden : The public realm in Malmo is outstanding – there is a mix of building typologies, and the slight modifications from a typical square grid create charming streetscapes.


The Turning Torso found in Malmo is the tallest skyscraper in Sweden and the Nordic countries.

Perhaps outweighing all of the aforementionned virtues that make this land special, is the simple aesthetic beauty of this pearl on the Ottawa River, and the picturesque landscape surrounding one of the regions most magnificent settings. Managing Partner Jonathan Westeinde added that after touring some of the worlds’ leading mixed-use sustainable communities, Windmill is equipped with even more confidence in designing and developing a community that will rival the leaders in global sustainable development. The unique blend of the areas physical setting, green energy opportunities and the relentless pursuit of innovative practices, will provide Windmill with a foundation upon which to create a leader in eco-community building.

Vienna, Austria: Vienna was one of the birthplaces of modernity at the beginning of the last century. It’s contemporary architecture balances aesthetics with purpose, and is always exciting!

Vienna, Austria: Vienna was one of the birthplaces of modernity at the beginning of the last century. It’s contemporary architecture balances aesthetics with purpose, and is always exciting!

Innovation is necessarily challenging, and Windmill is excited to meet the challenges associated with untapping the enormous potential of the Domtar Lands. As the first world-class community to be developed by a private sector developer, Windmill will transform the Ottawa-Gatineau waterfront through innovative and sustainable development, while once again demonstrating that living in harmony with the planet makes economic sense.

Hanging around in Hammarby, Sweden : Since it opened 10 years ago there have been 120,000 visitors to their interpretation center from almost every country on the planet.  And that’s just the people that registered!  That translates to an enormous amount of local economic activity generated almost strictly from demonstrating a better way to live, work, play and learn.

Hanging around in Hammarby, Sweden : Since it opened 10 years ago there have been 120,000 visitors to their interpretation center from almost every country on the planet. And that’s just the people that registered! That translates to an enormous amount of local economic activity generated almost strictly from demonstrating a better way to live, work, play and learn.


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On December 11th, 2013, Windmill Development Group hosted a public community consult regarding the development of Chaudière, Albert Island and the Gatineau waterfront. The primary objective of this consultation was to collect feedback and ideas from attendees pertaining to the Development Principles that are intended to guide this project.

We were excited to have approximately 900 attendees. Our team embarked on thousands of conversations, and received many good comments and suggestions, from which we have created a summary.  Below is a link to our summary, which can also be found on our website.

Click here for Summary

Windmill is extremely appreciative of, and grateful to, all of the guests who attended our community consultation and have expressed an interest in this project. We look forward to further collaboration with the public through the duration of this development.


Le 11 décembre 2013, le Groupe Développements Windmill a tenu une consultation publique sur le projet de développement immobilier pour l’île Chaudière, l’île Albert et les secteurs riverains de la rivière des Outaouais. Le principal objectif de la consultation était de recueillir des commentaires et des idées auprès des participants sur les principes de conception qui guideront l’exécution du projet.

Nous sommes très heureux que près de 900 personnes aient assisté à la consultation publique. Notre équipe a participé à des milliers de discussions et a reçu d’excellents commentaires et des suggestions pertinentes, que nous avons résumés dans un document. Vous trouverez ci-dessous un lien pour accéder à notre résumé, qui se trouve aussi sur notre site Web.

Cliquez ici pour le résumé

Windmill est extrêmement reconnaissant de l’engagement des personnes qui ont assisté à la consultation publique et qui ont exprimé leur intérêt à l’égard du projet. Nous sommes impatients de continuer cette belle collaboration avec la population tout au long du projet.

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Click here to download French version.

First public consultation scheduled for December 11th, 2013

Ottawa, December 4, 2013 – After months of due diligence, Ottawa’s Windmill Development Group and Domtar have signed a definitive Agreement of Purchase and Sale (Agreement) for Domtar’s property on Ottawa’s Albert and Chaudière Islands and downtown Gatineau.

“Our vision is to create Canada’s most sustainable mixed-used community right here in the nation’s capital,” said Jonathan Westeinde, co-founder of the Windmill Development Group. “We plan to bring new life and energy to this once bustling heart of industry, and give the people of Ottawa and Gatineau a new way to experience and appreciate one of the great rivers of the world, the Ottawa.”

Through historically and environmentally sensitive redevelopment, Windmill, one of Canada’s greenest developers, plans to reinvent the area into a vibrant, world-class, sustainable, pedestrian-oriented mixed-use community.

The Agreement with Domtar commits Windmill to purchasing the property, with the only remaining condition being rezoning of the property for a mixed-use community-scale development. Windmill plans to present its planning application to Ottawa and Gatineau city councils in the spring. The financial terms of the Agreement are not being released at this stage.

“We are pleased to be transferring the stewardship and revitalization of this important redevelopment opportunity to Windmill. Windmill’s commitment to sustainability aligns with Domtar’s corporate mission and we are confident will result in a world-class development that will enhance the Nation’s Capital” said Stewart Marcoux, Vice President Asset Redeployment for Domtar.

As part of its due diligence process, Windmill consulted with a wide-range of groups, including the City of Gatineau and Ottawa, Energy Ottawa, the Government of Canada, the Algonquins of Ontario, the Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg band of Algonquins, the National Capital Commission, the Ottawa Riverkeeper, Destination Gatineau, Ecology Ottawa, Heritage Canada Foundation and many others.

“The encouragement we’ve received from the National Capital Commission, the two cities, the Algonquin people, and the environmental community has been overwhelming. People are extremely enthusiastic to have something great happen at this location,” says Windmill partner Rodney Wilts.

Windmill will hold its first public consultation December 11th, from 5:00 to 9:00 pm at the Canadian Museum of Civilization. The public will have an opportunity to comment on Windmill’s development principles for the property. Registration for the event, and a preview of the development principles can be found at or

Media availability

Windmill Development Group will not be granting interviews at this time.

Media are invited to attend the December 11 public consultation at the Canadian Museum of Civilization. Windmill will be giving two presentations in French and English, one at 6:00 p.m. and again at 7:30 p.m.


“I’m delighted to see that there is a plan being developed to revitalize an important piece of our local and national history. We need to find ways for this land to reach its full potential, and offer residents and visitors greater access to the Ottawa River, a national treasure. This is an opportunity to create a complete community that represents the Canada we dream of for the future: dynamic, livable and sustainable. We look forward to giving the plan careful consideration when it is presented to the City.” Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa

“The successful realization of the full potential and urban revitalization of downtown Gatineau depends on the sustained commitment and involvement of all players. This land has been central to the region’s history, as a seat of Aboriginal culture, the birthplace of our first industries, and a place visited by every one of the great explorers. Carrying out such a project would help make the downtown the pride of all Gatineau residents.” Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin, Mayor of Gatineau.

“Windmill’s plan to celebrate Chaudière Island’s historical significance and to bring new life and energy to the waterfront is completely aligned with our aspirations for that space and the region.” – Jean-François Trépanier, Chief Executive Officer, National Capital Commission

About Windmill

Windmill is a visionary company dedicated to transforming conventional development practices by ensuring that strong ecological, social and financial returns are achieved in all their projects. Every Windmill development is conceived, designed and constructed to protect and enhance the local community and its ecosystems. Windmill is the only developer in North America that has achieved LEED Platinum on all its mixed-use projects. The company’s founders have held prominent positions in the Canadian design, construction, brownfield and green real estate industry for more than 30 years, resulting in an unmatched value proposition when it comes to responsible urban infill and property revitalization. Sample completed projects include The Currents, a performing arts centre and modern condominium tower in Ottawa’s Wellington West neighborhood, Acqua & Vento, two mixed-use buildings in Calgary and Dockside Green, a 1.5 million square foot planned model sustainable community in Victoria that was named one of 16 Clinton Climate Initiative Climate Positive developments.

Windmill currently has two additional LEED Platinum target projects under construction in Ottawa: Cathedral Hill, a 140 unit mixed-use project located on the west end of Sparks Street in Ottawa and the Eddy, a 53-unit mixed-use project located in Hintonburg in Ottawa.

For information:

Rodney Wilts
Partner, Windmill Developments

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As Canada’s greenest real estate developer, Windmill projects converge their core values of integrity, sustainability and innovation. The ecological and environmental responsibility inherent in our project management approach allowed for the opportunity to participate in Enbridge’s Savings By Design campaign – a building initiative that subsidizes the Integrated Design Process and provides additional incentives for adopting green practices throughout the course of a building’s development. Learn more about this program here:

Using an Integrated Design Process, Windmill engaged a team of sustainability professionals who worked in collaboration to offer creative and innovative designs that partner sustainable structures with contemporary architecture. Inspired to make a difference in our communities, Windmill offers green features and practices in conjunction with the Canada Green Building Council’s LEED Platinum certification status such as innovative heating and cooling systems, tight building exterior (envelope), and quality appliances and lighting fixtures. These elements of design not only help minimize our carbon footprint but offer our homeowners real savings in lower energy bills, proving that the best ecological choices are also good economic choices. With new projects underway in Centretown and Hintonburg, Windmill buyers are sure to be seduced by the neighborhood charms and the modern conveniences of urban living.

Click here for a short video of how the Savings By Design program works and how Windmills’ commitment to a green lifestyle helps build stronger and healthier communities. You can be a pioneer in your community too by making one of Windmills’ spectacular green developments your home.

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On July 15th, Ottawa-based Windmill Development Group signed a letter of intent to purchase the Domtar site on the Chaudière Islands.

Windmill is in the process of undertaking due diligence before any sale can be completed. We are optimistic that we will be in a position to make a formal announcement related to this potential purchase and our vision for the site in early September. Until the sale of the land has been confirmed, Windmill will not be granting interviews to media.

Windmill Developments is currently studying the suitability of the site for a mixed-use sustainable community. Residents and concerned parties can rest assured that Windmill takes its responsibility related to this historic and symbolic property extremely seriously. As with all of our projects, if we proceed we will be undertaking an extensive consultation process to ensure the views of interested parties are considered as part of our design process.

Our vision for the Chaudière Islands is to reinvent a historically rich, industrial space into a vibrant, world-class, sustainable, pedestrian-oriented, mixed-use development. Through historically sensitive redevelopment, the Chaudière region can be reanimated to bring new life and energy to this once bustling heart of industry. The harmonious integration of modern sustainable infrastructure into the heritage fabric of the Isles has the potential to provide the people of Ottawa and Gatineau with a new way to experience and appreciate the natural splendor of the Ottawa River.

About Windmill Developments

Windmill Developments is an Ottawa-based real estate development firm, with an unparalleled expertise in highly sustainable developments, with a particular focus on remediating brownfield sites.  Windmill Developments is best known for their Dockside Green development in Victoria, BC. Dockside was one of 18 developments around the globe recognized by the Clinton Climate Initiative as being ‘Climate Positive’, and was called potentially the world’s greenest community by The Atlantic magazine. Windmill Developments is the only company in Canada with a completed portfolio of LEED Platinum mixed-use developments. Current projects include Cathedral Hill (, The Eddy (, Union Lofts (, and Whitewater Village ( For more information on Windmill Developments visit

For further information:

Rodney Wilts
Partner, Windmill Developments
Office number 613.203.7365

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Windmill Developments Win Greenline Ideas Competition

The Green Line Ideas Competition is a global competition that called on architects, landscape architects, designers, planners, artists and community members to formulate design proposals to improve the functionality of a 5km long hydro corridor in midtown Toronto. The competition aimed to use this particular hydro corridor as a template for potential ways to improve the public uses of these derelict spaces in cities all across North America.

Alex Speigel, Managing Partner of Windmill Development Group’s Toronto office, partnered with Susan Speigel Architect Inc. to create a visionary design focused on green energy production as a way to fund other public realm improvements along the corridor. Windmill’s submission placed 2nd out of a total 77 competition entrants. We proposed a scheme based on retrofitting existing infrastructure to generate clean, renewable energy using vertical wind turbines, photovoltaic arrays, and geothermal loops below grade.

See Windmills’ Green Line Ideas Competition Submission  >

Whereas most other competition entrants focused on single issues, Windmill Development’s approach was more holistic and comprehensive. The energy harnessed through these infrastructure improvements would serve as a source of revenue to fund a variety of the public realm enhancements put forth by other competition entrants. The proposal has received support from city councilors, the local community, and was featured in this week’s NRU. Whether or not any of the winning designs will actually be implemented remains to be seen but the ideas competition has certainly stimulated positive community discussion and helped to get the ball rolling in the right direction.

NRU May 10th Edition >


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OTTAWA, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – Dec. 4, 2012) – Ottawa-based residential developer Windmill Development Group has unveiled the condo of the future, a sustainable infill condominium building that marries stringent green innovation with modern design and genuine community improvement.

The Eddy is a six-storey, 57-unit condo development in the heart of Hintonburg, one of Ottawa’s fastest growing and hippest downtown neighbourhoods. The low-rise, angle-shaped building makes the most of the limited space of a former parking lot and serves as an innovative model for how developers and community associations can work together to make intensification work.

“Canada’s larger urban centres are embracing intensification to address population growth, optimize existing infrastructure and costs, and reduce traffic,” said Rodney Wilts, Development Manager, Windmill Development Group. “Our experience is that intensification doesn’t have to come at the expense of the community. With The Eddy, we are again proving that we can work within community design plans, while providing the most effective green technologies and visually appealing designs.”

“From consultation to design, Windmill’s project has helped us achieve our goals of encouraging new buildings that fit into the Wellington streetscape, and promoting an active, creative and involved community,” said Jay Baltz of the Hintonburg Community Association. “We truly believe that The Eddy and its residents will contribute to and improve our neighbourhood.”

To read more: click here
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Learn what makes Windmill unique in the development world, what values drive our team and why our partners and clients choose Canada’s Greenest Developer. Beyond our green initiatives, this video explores the company’s world-class reputation for being a rigorous and holistic driving force in sustainable real estate.

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