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Bailey Broom Company


Bailey Broom Company, (305-325 Rideau Street)

Citizens have shown a real and remarkable love for this iconic old building. That love resulted in considerable angst when, in the spring of 2016,  it appeared that the building might be torn down to accommodate construction of the Wellington St. Extension. By accident, it was discovered that plans were afoot to demolish this building. Thanks are due to John and Michael Sinclair of Living Rooms for overhearing a conversation between the city and a heritage brick dealer discussing the demolition and drawing this to our attention. We are also grateful to Laura Murray (on the City’s Municipal Heritage Committee at the time) for jumping into serious political action mode and to Jennifer McKendry (architectural historian) for all of her truly wonderful historical research on this building. An emergency session of Council was called where PowerPoint presentations were made by Jennifer McKendry and Mary Farrar to educate Council as to the heritage value of this building. Many letters of support to Council were forthcoming prior to the meeting. 

We are most grateful to all community members that came forward to support saving this iconic Inner Harbour building. Demolition was put on hold until the end of 2016 and the City approved $60,000 to assess the condition of the building. By August, the City had heard from three local business people interested in buying the building.

Following is an account of all the necessary bureaucratic decision-making required to make the re-purposing of the Bailey Broom Company a reality,.  In the end it is testimony to successful cooperation between community members, city council and staff.  A truly wonderful rescue story.

The Bailey Broom Factory application for Official Plan Amendment and Zoning By-law Amendment was passed at Planning Committee on April 16, and approved by Council on May 5, 2020:  Report Number PC-20-027.

Background and Decision Dates:

In the spring 2014, Council approved the purchase the road corridor lands within 5 Cataraqui Street and all of the property known as 305-323 Rideau Street.

A condition of the City’s purchase was the demolition of all the buildings on the 305-323 Rideau Street property by the vendor, including the Bailey Broom Factory. At that time, the former Bailey Broom Factory was not listed or designated and recognized as exemplifying heritage significance.

 In June 2014, Council passed a motion to amend the terms of the City’s agreement to purchase 305-323 Rideau Street so that the requirement of the vendor to demolish the former Bailey Broom Factory was removed.

In August 2014, Council approved a budget to complete investigations of the existing building, which included a designated substance review, a building condition assessment, minor structural repairs, a heritage assessment and any other investigations. Council also directed staff to undertake a Request for Information (RFI) process to publicly solicit proposals to acquire, restore and repurchase the 305-323 Rideau Street property.

An assessment of the Cultural Heritage Value was undertaken by an independent consultant.

As per the recommendation of the heritage assessment, in January 2015, Council approved the Municipal Heritage Committee’s recommendation to designate the subject property to recognize its façade and cultural heritage attributes.

In November 2014, staff issued the RFI. RAW Design Inc. was the sole respondent to the RFI.

Subsequently in March 2015, a Request for Proposal (RFP) was issued to RAW Design Inc. for the acquisition, restoration and repurposing of the former Bailey Broom Factory. In 2016, RAW Factory Inc. purchased the subject properties which included a sale agreement that requires the owner to complete the restoration of the existing heritage building prior to developing the vacant lands known municipally as 323 Rideau Street. In accordance with By-Law Number 2007-43, these applications were subject to a preapplication meeting held on November 29, 2016, with the Planning Service and various other departments and agencies.

A complete application submission was made by the applicant on March 29, 2018.
Since the initial Public Meeting on May 17, 2018, the applicants have worked with staff to address technical comments related to site design, details of the amending zoning by-law, other site factors, taking the application beyond the 210 days after a complete application was received. Staff have reviewed the revised information and had no further technical concerns with preparing this report and advanced a recommendation for consideration by the Planning Committee and Council.

The applicant is proposing to redevelop the former Bailey Broom Factory at 305 Rideau Street (southern parcel) by introducing commercial uses in the designated heritage building.

The applicant is proposing to retrofit the existing building to accommodate office space, co-working office/meeting space along with a café/restaurant. Additional uses such as an event space, performance space, artisan workshops, food-based start-ups, market and education space are considered and contemplated to be located within the adaptively repurposed heritage building.

The site includes nine vehicular parking spaces including one accessible parking space, and 15 bicycle parking spaces. A small accessory building is proposed to be located at the rear of the property that will enclose the garbage facilities for the commercial operations (Exhibit D – Site Plan and Elevations for Southern Parcel).

The property at 323 Rideau Street (northern parcel) was originally proposed to be redeveloped with nine (9) residential townhome units. This site is currently vacant. This proposal saw the nine (9) townhomes built at 3.5 storeys tall with each townhouse dwelling including an individual garage located at the rear of the property accessed via a private lane.

Through technical review, the northern parcel has been reconfigured to propose seven (7) dwelling units consisting of five (5) townhomes and a semi-detached building (Exhibit E – Site Plan and Elevations for Northern Parcel). The dwelling units are proposed to have their own individual garage and vehicular access onto Rideau Street.

Pedestrian access is also provided from Rideau Street. Each dwelling unit is also designed to accommodate a second dwelling unit in the basement and a bicycle parking space at grade.

In support of the applications, the applicant has submitted the following:
• Planning Rationale;
• Site Plan Drawing Package for the Southern Parcel;
• Site Plan Drawing Package for the Northern Parcel;
• Architectural Elevations;
• Townhome Floor Plans;
• Serviceability Report;
• Stormwater Management Report;
• Servicing and Grading Plan;
• Tree Inventory and Preservation Plan;
• Noise Study;
• Record of Site Condition;
• Archaeological Report;
• Landscape Plan; and
• Heritage Impact Statement

The approved proposal will see the Bailey Broom Factory redeveloped with a mix of neighbourhood commercial uses, and the addition of 5 townhomes and a semi-detached building containing two units on the vacant parcel north of the Broom Factory.

You can find out more about this project by visiting DASH and searching using the application file number D35-007-2017.
More Information, James Bar, Senior Planner, email