While the concept is a true innovation for Ottawa, there are many economically successful artist live-work properties throughout Toronto and Vancouver. In the case of Toronto Artscape it is an arms-length type of corporation with the City of Toronto. It plays an interface role between artist users, developers, funding agencies and governments. Check it out. http://www.torontoartscape.org/
Where do we start in Ottawa? I propose Ottawa needs a not-for-profit arms-length Artist Live-Work Development Corporation with paid professional employees to find and work with a developer, City staff, community groups, architects, funding agencies, etc, etc. Artist-users are already overloaded with all the aspects of their business of art, nor do they necessarily have the skills and professional contacts to bring the project to fruition. Their commitment is demonstrated by organizing and attending monthly meetings to discuss their needs and aspirations. They could provide input to an arms-length interface corporation toward fruition of projects.
Toronto Artscape, which is this type of interface non-profit corporation, has put their DIY (do-it-yourself) step-by-step information on their website. In my opinion, key professional players in Ottawa need to cooperate to incorporate such a not-for-profit organization to develop turn-key-like artist live-work properties while consulting with artist-user groups.http://www.torontoartscape.org/learn-how-we-do-it
It amazing to me, now that I'm looking, how many possible property types there are in Ottawa, ranging from reclaimed abandoned city owned buildings to new high-rise developments.