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February 10, 2016

Notice of Motion to Support the Sharing of Fibre-Optic Networks

At City Council on Feb. 10, I seconded an important motion moved by Councillor Jeff Leiper regarding the CRTC's decision to require the sharing of fibre-optic networks between large and small competitors.

Last July, the CRTC ruled on the future of broadband internet services, where they came down firmly on the side of increased competition and better consumer choices. Large providers will be required to share their fibre-optic infrastructure with smaller competitors on a wholesale basis.

We know that in this day and age, there is a desire for connectivity and innovation. This decision is in the consumers' interest, as competition generally leads to better pricing, services, and choice for our residents. As a city, it is in our best interest because our limited right-of-ways could not accommodate a myriad of providers digging and laying their own fibre-optic cables.

I look forward to voting on this motion at the next Council meeting on Feb. 24.

February 4, 2016

Family Day schedule changes

The City of Ottawa would like to remind residents of the following schedule changes for Family Day, Monday, February 15.

Recreation services:

  • Sens Rink of Dreams, located on Marion Dewar Plaza at Ottawa City Hall, is open daily from 6 a.m. to11 p.m. The heated changing facility is open daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Mayor Jim Watson invites residents to join him for the Mayor’s Annual Family Day Skating Party, complete with winter fun from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event will include special guests and free hot chocolate.
  • Skating Court, located at Lansdowne Park, is open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., and the heated changing facility is open daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., weather permitting. Visit ottawa.ca to confirm if the facility is open.
  • Ben Franklin Place Skating Rink, located at 101 Centrepointe Drive, is open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m., and the heated changing facility is open daily from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m.  weather permitting.
  • Most recreation facilities will be modifying their hours of operation on Monday, February 15. There may be changes to schedules and program cancellations in order to provide special programming. Additional swimmingand skating sessions will be offered at many sites. Please check schedules at ottawa.ca, or with the facility of your choice.

Winterlude:

  • Check for any schedule changes due to weather. The City of Ottawa is a proud partner site for Winterlude 2016. Visit ottawa.ca for a complete listing of activities at City facilities.
  • Visit the official Winterlude website for a complete itinerary of activities around the National Capital Region.

Client services:

  • The City’s Provincial Offences Court, located at 100 Constellation Crescent, will also be closed. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, February 16.
  • The City’s 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters requiring the City’s immediate attention. Call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. For individuals living with a hearing-related disability, call (TTY): 613-580-2401.

Garbage, green bin and recycling collection:

  • There will be no curbside green bin, recycling,garbage or bulky itemcollectionon Monday, February 15. Family Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, February 16. In addition, the collection of green bin, garbage and recycling materials will be delayed by one day for the week of February 15. For curbside collection inquiries, refer to the collection calendar tool.
  • There will be nomulti-residential bulky items, green bin and recycling container collectionon Family Day. Family Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, February 16. Collection will also be delayed by one day for the week of February 17. However, multi-residential garbage container collectionis not delayed and collection will take place on its regularly scheduled day during the week of February 15.
  • The Trail Road landfill site will be closed.

Transit service:

  • OC Transpo will operate a revised weekday schedule on Family Day with minor reductions. Special school trip routes numbered in the 600s and 201 will not operate. A family may travel all day with a DayPass which can be purchased for $8.30 from the bus operator when you board. A family includes up to six people with a maximum of two individuals aged 13 or older. Call 613-560-1000 or text 560560 plus your four-digit bus stop number for real time schedule information. For more information, holiday schedules and travel planning, phone 613-741-4390, or visit octranspo.com. 
  • The OC Transpo Telephone Information Centre (613‑741‑4390) will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • The OC Transpo Customer Relations Department (613-842-3600) will be open from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
  • Para Transpo operations:
  • Customer service (613-842-3681) – open regular hours
  • Administration (613-244-1289) – open regular hours
  • Taxi coupons (613-842-3670) – open regular hours
  • Reservations (613-244-7272) – open regular hours

Parking:

  • All City of Ottawa parking regulations and restrictions will apply during this time.

Ottawa Public Health:

  • The latest Food Premises and Personal Service Settings (tattoo and body piercing studios, hairdressing and barbershops, nail salons, electrolysis and various other services) public health inspection reports are available online 24/7.
  • SITE program – SITE office at 179 Clarence Street will be closed; however, the SITE Mobile Van will be operating on a regular schedule from 5 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Cultural services:

  • City of Ottawa Archives, arts centres, galleries, theatres, Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, Pinhey’s Point Historic Site, Nepean Museum and Billings Estate National Historic Site will be closed. However, clients should check with ottawa.ca or their facility to confirm holiday hours, as some exceptions may apply.

Archives Services:

  • The City of Ottawa Archives Reference Services and Gallery 112 will be closed on Monday, February 15 for the Family Day weekend.

Municipal child care services:

Library services:

  • All branches and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed. Regular hours will resume Tuesday, February 16.

February 2, 2016

Register now for March Break camps

School will be out from March 14 to 18 for March Break, and the City is offering a week of fun-filled activities and action-packed camps in sports, arts, swimming and more.

Register now for March Break camps. Find your neighbourhood adventure online at ottawa.ca/recreation:

  • Take to the ice with hockey, skating and curling camps
  • Try aqua camps, indoor soccer or rock climbing
  • Wow family and friends with talents developed in computer, magic or movie camps
  • Star on stage in acting, singing and dance camps
  • Get messy with clay, paints and glue
  • Work on your leadership skills and make new friends

Ottawa’s largest selection of camps comes with enthusiastic and trained leaders. Our programs offer top value and quality you can trust.

You can register online, or visit a recreation facility or Client Service Centre where customer service staff can help you with all your registration needs.

February 2, 2016

Ottawa Public Health seeking feedback on local impacts of alcohol use

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is seeking feedback from the public about the local effect of excessive alcohol use in Ottawa. The online survey is part of OPH’s Strategic Direction to promote a culture of moderation and decrease harms related to alcohol misuse. The project aims to start a community dialogue among the public and stakeholders about community concerns related to alcohol use and to explore options to better address the current situation in Ottawa.

You can share your views:

  • Online at HaveYourSayOttawa.ca. This bilingual online consultation includes 10 short questions and will be available until February 29.
  • Call the OPH Information Line to speak with a public health nurse at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656).
  • Email healthsante@ottawa.ca

Alcohol use is commonly seen as an individual choice and the consequences of excessive use, which affect the community at large, are often ignored. One-third of Canadian adults say that in the past year they experienced one or more types of harms resulting from someone else’s excessive drinking.

In Ottawa, alcohol continues to be the most used substance and causes a greater health burden of injury and disease than all other drugs, whether illegal or prescription. The impacts from excessive alcohol use include physical and sexual assaults, falls, motor-vehicle collisions caused by impaired drivers or impaired pedestrians, lost productivity in the workplace, family violence and breakdown, fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, and cancer and cirrhosis of the liver.

Every year in Ottawa, about 1,000 adults are hospitalized and 110 people die from factors attributed to alcohol consumption.

For additional information, visit OttawaPublicHealth.ca or call Ottawa Public Health Information at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter.

January 26, 2016

City of Ottawa’s Winterlude 2016 activities get underway

Mayor Jim Watson and Yasir Naqvi, Member of Provincial Parliament for Ottawa Centre, will officially launch the Winterlude 2016 events taking place at the City’s partner sites: Lansdowne Park, City Hall and Shenkman Arts Centre.

Date: Thursday, January 28

Time: 11 a.m.

Location: Aberdeen Square, Lansdowne Park

In case of inclement weather: inside Aberdeen Pavilion
450 Queen Elizabeth Drive (North side of Aberdeen Pavilion)

Paid parking is available on site.

Immediately following the event, enjoy demonstrations of:

  • Snow carving, with students from First Avenue Public School
  • Snow painting, with the Ottawa School of Art
  • Outdoor curling, on the Lansdowne Skating Court
  • Snowshoe running with Mad Trapper and Run Ottawa

And… the Winterlude Ice Hog Family will be there, along with free hot chocolate courtesy of TD, at TD Place, Lansdowne Park.

January 11, 2016

Ottawa Public Health seeking feedback on updating Ottawa’s smoke-free by-laws

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is seeking feedback from residents and stakeholders on proposed options to protect the public from the harms of second-hand smoke and vapour from the smoking of non-tobacco combustible substances and the use of electronic cigarettes in public places and workplaces.

The Let’s Clear the Air 2.0 consultation plan includes potential new regulations relating to the use of water-pipes and electronic cigarettes in public establishments. These changes, if adopted by Council, would impact existing by-laws in place to help protect residents from the harms of second-hand smoke.

Starting January 11, 2016, residents and stakeholders can share their views:

  • Online at ottawa.ca/tobacco. This bilingual online consultation includes nine short questions and can be accessed from January 11, 2016 to January 24, 2016.
  • Call the OPH Information Line at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656).
  • Email at healthsante@ottawa.ca.

For additional information, visit OttawaPublicHealth.ca or call Ottawa Public Health Information at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). Connect with us on Facebook and Twitter

January 5, 2016

OC Transpo adjusts Transitway routes between Merton Street and Empress Avenue for O-Train Confederation Line construction

Starting Sunday, January 17, the next phase of OC Transpo route adjustments to accommodate O-Train Confederation Line construction will take effect. These adjustments require the closure of the Transitway roadway just west of downtown, between Merton Street and Empress Avenue. Buses will be adjusted to run on the newly constructed bus-only lanes along Scott and Albert Streets.

Changes have been designed to maintain important connections for customers and minimize the number of buses running on Scott Street. Most customers using this section of the Transitway will have a slightly longer travel time. They will also see changes to the platform locations at Bayview and LeBreton Stations, which move south to Albert Street.

All customers are encouraged to visit octranspo.com and use the new travel planner to see if their trips are affected.

On Track 2018 – Confederation Line Construction

January 17 – Summary of Changes

• Transitway roadway closes between Empress Avenue and Merton Street, and buses will be rerouted to bus lanes on Albert and Scott streets
• Routes 86, 87, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 96, 97, 98 and 99, as well as all west-end express and peak-only routes will use Scott and Albert
• Customers using these routes will see travel times increase by up to three minutes
• LeBreton and Bayview Transitway stations will be relocated slightly south to Albert Street
• All routes serving LeBreton and Bayview will continue to serve these stations
• Out-of-service buses will be routed via the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway in order to minimize the number of buses on Scott and Albert

For more information about O-Train Confederation Line construction, visit ontrack2018.ca or confederationline.ca

Real-time schedule information is available 24 hours a day, up to six days in advance, by calling 613-560-1000 or texting 560560 plus the four‑digit bus stop number. For more details, travel planning assistance, and new timetables, customers should call OC Transpo at 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.

December 30, 2015

Free OC Transpo service on New Year’s Eve

Ottawa residents can once again ring in the New Year with free transit service thanks to sponsorship from Safer Roads Ottawa, a City of Ottawa program.

Free service will be available on OC Transpo and Para Transpo after 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. OC Transpo routes will operate a reduced weekday service on December 31. Customers should check the holiday schedules before heading out.

The Safer Roads Ottawa program is a leading community partnership between Ottawa Fire Services, Ottawa Paramedic Service, Ottawa Police Service, Ottawa Public Health and the Public Works Department that is committed to preventing or eliminating road deaths and serious injuries for all people in the city of Ottawa, through culture change, community engagement and development of a sustainable safe transportation environment.

For more information and travel planning assistance during the holiday season, contact OC Transpo at 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.

December 21, 2015

Register now to get the most out of Winterlude at Lansdowne

Registration is now open for anyone who thinks snowshoes, snow sculptures or touchdowns will be part of their Winterlude experience in 2016. The annual winter festival will be held between January 29 and February 15 and registration is now open for many of the special events. 

Snowshoe Ultimate Tournament

Twenty-four teams of five will compete in the inaugural Snowshoe Ultimate Tournament on the Great Lawn at Lansdowne on February 14. The City is teaming up with the Ottawa-Carleton Ultimate Association and the outdoor group Mad Trapper to find the top local snowshoe team. Registration is on now. 

Snowshoe running

Not sure how good you are on snowshoes? The Mad Trapper and Run Ottawa will offer four separate training sessions to help you get better and stronger on snowshoes. You can register now to learn how to walk, run, cross-train and play Ultimate on snowshoes. 

Blizzard Bowl

Think you’re the next Henry Brrr-is, or Shiver-on Walker? Get your friends and family together to play touch football in the snow in the annual Blizzard Bowl. Organized by the Bytown Touch Football League, the tournament takes place Saturday, February 6 on the Great Lawn at Lansdowne. A maximum of 24 teams will be selected. 

City Snowscapes

What’s Winterlude without snow sculptures? Register for the City Snowscapes Community Snow Sculpture contest by January 22, 2016. Up to 10 teams will be selected based on creativity, technique and visual appeal. In the meantime, get your team together and plan on joining the fun at Lansdowne’s Aberdeen Square. Sponsored in part by the Government of Ontario. 

For more information on Winterlude or to register for any of these events, visit ottawa.ca.

December 14, 2015

OC Transpo holiday schedule changes coming, including free New Year’s Eve service after 8 p.m.

OC Transpo and Para Transpo are the safe and reliable way to travel during the holidays and are offering free service after 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve sponsored by Safer Roads Ottawa, a City of Ottawa program.

OC Transpo will also run a special holiday service from December 20 to January 2. Transit customers are encouraged to visit octranspo.com and check their route schedule before heading out.

Holiday service:

  • December 21 to 24, 29 to 30

Reduced weekday schedule

  • December 25

Sunday schedule

  • December 26, 28

Saturday schedule

  • December 31

Reduced weekday schedule and free service after 8 p.m.

  • January 1

Sunday schedule

Schools are closed over the holidays, so special school routes will not be running.

Holiday schedules are available at octranspo.com or by calling 613‑741-4390. Riders can get automated real-time schedule information, 24 hours a day, by calling 613-560-1000 or texting 560560 plus their four-digit bus stop number.

Para Transpo holiday bookings

Para Transpo will operate a holiday service on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Regular scheduled trips are automatically cancelled, but customers may book trips for these days by calling 613-244‑7272 on or after:

  • December 18 for Christmas Day bookings
  • December 19 for Boxing Day bookings
  • December 25 for New Year’s Day bookings

Customers are reminded to suspend their regular booking if they will be on vacation during the holiday season.

Low rate fare for families on holidays

Families can travel all day on weekends and statutory holidays with one $8.30 DayPass. The Family DayPass is valid for up to six people, with a maximum of two people who are age 13 or older.

Holiday office hours

The Transit Information Centre (613-741-4390) will be open throughout the holidays to help customers with schedules and trip-planning, including Christmas and New Year’s Day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Boxing Day from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The Customer Relations Centre (613‑842-3600) will be closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, and will operate on reduced hours Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

OC Transpo Sales and Information Centres will be closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, except the Rideau Centre, which will be open Boxing Day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. All Sales Centres will close early on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve at 5 p.m. The offices at Lincoln Fields, St-Laurent and Place d’Orléans will open on Saturday, January 2, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Para Transpo Customer Service (613-842-3681), Administration (613-244-1289) and Taxi Coupon (613-842-3670) offices will be closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, but Reservations (613-244-7272) will be open regular hours.

For more information, contact OC Transpo at 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.

For information about the Confederation Line construction project, visit ottawa.ca.

December 10, 2015

Winterlude is in the air at select City locations

Winter may not be on the ground, but Winterlude is in the air. Canadian Heritage has officially announced its plans for the 2016 edition of Ottawa’s favourite winter festival, and those plans include three City partner sites: City Hall, Lansdowne and Shenkman Arts Centre.

The Rideau Canal, Jacques-Cartier Park in the Hull sector of Gatineau, and Confederation Park are the official sites for the event, which attracts over 600,000 people annually and generates revenue for our local economy.

“Hundreds of thousands of people take part in Winterlude activities each year, many travelling from outside of Canada to get here,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “There is no doubt about it, Winterlude puts the National Capital Region on the international map.”

At City Hall, most activities will take place on and around the Sens Rink of Dreams, such as Cool Science, Enbridge Energy on Ice and the Mayor’s Annual Family Day Skating Party, which will again add an extra day to Winterlude festivities.

Lansdowne will be a destination for family activities during the day, such as the Mad Trapper Snowshoe Ultimate Frisbee, and more adult-oriented entertainment in the evening. The government of Ontario will again provide funding for the Lansdowne Park Snowscapes events, including outdoor curling, the dance party finale and the Community Snow Sculpture Contest.

“Winterlude is truly an iconic festival that defines Ottawa, attracting thousands from across Ontario and around the world,” said Yasir Naqvi, Member of Provincial Parliament for Ottawa Centre. “It features fantastic activities for the whole family and Ontario is proud to provide over $120,000 through Celebrate Ontario to ensure everyone gets to enjoy this wonderful festival and join in the fun.”

Shenkman Arts Centre will feature Mudmen, The Nightingale by Rag and Bone Puppet Theatre and a return of Fête Frissons – a mini winter fest.

“These events will add excitement, colour and flavour to this winter extravaganza,” said Councillor Diane Deans, Chair of the City’s Community and Protective Services Committee. “I encourage everyone to take part in some of the many exciting Winterlude activities this year, and celebrate winter here in Canada’s capital.”

For more information about Winterlude 2016, visit ottawa.ca.

December 10, 2015

Ottawa Public Health seeking up-to-date immunization information for school children

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) continues its efforts to protect our community from vaccine-preventable diseases by ensuring all Ottawa students are fully immunized according to recommended schedules and have up-to-date immunization records. Parents and guardians who have received a letter from OPH and have not yet contacted OPH are asked to connect with OPH to avoid their child’s suspension from school.

As outlined in Ottawa Public Health’s Immunization Strategy: Update on Every Child, Every Year reportin October, over the past several months, OPH has been reviewing the immunization records of 150,000 students attending elementary and high schools in Ottawa to ensure all Ottawa students are fully immunized according to recommended schedules and have up-to-date immunization records. Complete and accurate immunization records are important to protect the health of students, especially during an infectious disease outbreak, such as measles.

OPH has worked to contact parents regarding their child’s immunization records while also verifying immunization records in OPH’s database and completing immunization assessments. Despite these efforts, immunization records of many students remain incomplete. Starting in October 2015 and continuing through to January 2016, OPH has notified families with incomplete child immunization records through mailed letters.

To date, OPH has sent out approximately 35,000 letters to parents asking them to update their child’s immunization records with OPH. These letters include information about the immunization records that are missing and how parents can update their child’s record with OPH.

If information from the parent is not received after the first letter, a second letter, which includes a suspension date, will be sent to these families between December 2015 and March 2016. Children whose records remain outstanding after the two letters will be suspended from school for a period of up to 20 school days under the authority of the Immunization of School Pupils Act. School principals will suspend students on a pre-determined date for 20 school days, to be rescinded when proof of immunization is received. To date, approximately 5,000 notice-of-suspension letters have been sent to parents.

Many parents have contacted OPH by phone, by fax, by mail and online with updated immunization information for their child. The high volume in parents contacting OPH with requested immunization information has significantly increased the demand on OPH’s phone lines and staff. To be responsive to parents, OPH is temporarily redeploying staff as needed to assist with updating the immunization records in a timely way and to prevent unnecessary school suspensions.

For children who are missing immunizations, families are being referred to their family doctor and for families without a family physician, OPH is offering catch-up clinics by appointment in east-end and west-end locations. These families can call OPH at 613-580-6744 to book an appointment at one of these catch-up clinics.

Parents who receive a letter requesting immunization information can contact OPH:

  • Online at www.parentinginOttawa.ca/Immunization
  • By fax at 613-580-9660
  • By phone at 613-580-6744 or TTY: 613-580-9656
  • Through the ImmunizeCA App: appottawa.immunize.ca
  • By Mail: Immunization Program, 100 Constellation Drive,7th floor West, Mail Code 26-44, Ottawa, ON, K2G 6J8

For additional information, visit OttawaPublicHealth.ca or call Ottawa Public Health Information at 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Tumblr.

December 10, 2015

OC Transpo adjusts service for O-Train Confederation Line construction and makes winter schedule changes

Starting Sunday, December 20, the next phase of OC Transpo service adjustments to accommodate O-Train Confederation Line construction will take effect. These service adjustments require the closure of the Transitway roadway between Lees and Hurdman stations. Additional adjustments will start Sunday, January 17, and will require the closure of the Transitway roadway between Empress Avenue and Merton Street. Changes have been designed to minimize impacts to customers, maintain transfers and serve major destinations, but some customers may have a slightly longer travel time and may see changes at stations and with connections. 

All customers are encouraged to visit octranspo.com and use the new travel planner to see if their trips are affected.

On Track 2018 – Confederation Line Construction

December 20

  • Transitway roadway closes between Lees and Hurdman stations.
  • Many routes will bypass Lees Station, which will be served by Routes 6, 16, 85, 101, new 103 and by Routes 91 and 95 eastbound, and 98 southbound. Service between Lees and downtown will be maintained by Routes 16 and 85.
  • Transit services at Lees Station will be accessible on the upper level; the lower level will only be open to allow pedestrian access.
  • Hurdman Station will no longer be served by Routes 95, 114, 192, 401 and 602, but new Route 104 will maintain connections from the east end. Stops in the station will be adjusted, which may affect where customers catch their bus.

January 17

  • Transitway roadway closes between Empress Avenue and Merton Street, and buses will be rerouted to bus lanes on Albert and Scott Streets.
  • LeBreton and Bayview Transitway stations will be relocated slightly to Albert Street.

Service Adjustment Highlights

December 20

  • East end morning rush hour routes will be shortened to end downtown at Bay Street instead of LeBreton Station, except Route 27.
  • Downtown Gatineau connections on Albert Street in the morning are maintained with Routes 8, 27 and 40, and at LeBreton Station with Routes 8 and 105.
  • East end afternoon rush hour routes, except Routes 24 and 231, will bypass Blair Station for a faster trip.
  • West end morning rush hour routes will be shortened to end at Mackenzie King Station instead of Campus (University of Ottawa).
  • South end rush hour routes will be shortened - Route 40 ends in Gatineau, instead of LeBreton, while Routes 41 and 43 end at Hurdman Station.
  • Route 4 will be shortened to operate between downtown and Carleton University, while service between Carleton University and Hurdman Station will be provided by new Route 104.
  • Route 85 will be shortened to end at Lees Station, and will be rerouted to bypass Campus Station and will travel via Laurier, King Edward, Mann, Chapel and Lees Avenue to the University of Ottawa Lees Campus.
  • Route 95 bypasses Hurdman Station, but connection from the east end will be maintained by new Route 104.
  • Route 98 will be shortened to end at LeBreton Station, instead of Tunney’s Pasture, during off-peak periods Monday to Friday.
  • Route 101 peak period service to/from Orléans will be replaced by new Route 103, which bypasses Hurdman Station in both directions and St-Laurent Station eastbound.
  • New Route 104 offers a direct connection between Orléans, Hurdman, Billings Bridge and Carleton University, seven days a week, with 24-hour service between Hurdman and Blair stations.
  • Route 106 will be extended from Elmvale to St-Laurent Station via St. Laurent Boulevard for a new connection to hospitals on Smyth Road.
  • Routes 114 and 192 will be shortened to end at St-Laurent Station instead of Hurdman.
  • Route 129 will be shortened to end at Hurdman; trips to Carleton University will be provided by new Route 104.
  • Route 401 will bypass Hurdman, while Route 403 will serve Hurdman but will bypass Lees Station.
  • Route 602 will be shortened to start/end at Mackenzie King instead of Hurdman. 

For more information about O-Train Confederation Line construction, visit ontrack2018.ca.

Seasonal schedule adjustments will also go into effect Sunday, December 20. New timetables are available in print and online at octranspo.com

Real-time schedule information is available 24 hours a day, up to six days in advance, by calling 613-560-1000 or texting 560560 plus the four‑digit bus stop number. For more details, travel planning assistance, and new timetables, customers should call OC Transpo at 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.

December 4, 2015

Lansdowne Skating Court opens today and Sens Rink of Dreams opens Saturday

The Lansdowne Skating Court will open today at 5 p.m. for the season, followed by the opening of the Sens Rink of Dreams at City Hall (110 Laurier Avenue West) on Saturday, December 5. 

Weather permitting, the rinks will be open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. A change room will also be available daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. Skaters need to bring their own skates as rental services are not available on site. Please note that certified multi-impact helmets are strongly recommended. 

The City’s other refrigerated ice pad, located at Ben Franklin Place (101 Centrepointe Drive), will be opening soon.  The City also operates more than 250 other outdoor rinks, which will be open for skating as soon as weather permits.

December 4, 2015

Permanent Signs on Private Property By-law Review

The City is reviewing the Permanent Signs on Private Property By-law 2005-439. The current By-law dates back to 2005 when the sign by-laws of the 11 pre-amalgamation municipalities, townships and villages that comprise the City of Ottawa were consolidated. Although there have been tweaks and technical amendments since then, it’s now time to take a broader view to ensure signs in Ottawa meet key objectives for signage and that the By-law reflects emerging technologies and trends.

How can you be involved?

Three objectives are outlined for the City’s approach to signage – ensuring public safety; good design and fit; and economic development.  These are detailed in the attached discussion paper that elaborates on each and which seeks public input on key questions.

You can also find the discussion paper and other information on the By-law review project web page at ottawa.ca/permanentsigns.

What is the timeline for the review?

Initial consultations with stakeholders will take place from November 2015 to January 2016. Input is invited by January 13 on the discussion paper now posted to the website and two additional series of issues papers that will be posted the weeks of November 23 and December 14.

Proposed recommendations for a new By-law will be developed and posted in February 2016. Focused meetings with directly-impacted stakeholders will be held as required in February 2016.

Stakeholders who have participated in providing feedback during the review will receive notice of the Committee meeting at which the recommendations will be considered (anticipated for June 2016), with a copy of the staff report.

Send your comments by email: Sarah.Newell@ottawa.ca.

December 2, 2015

OC Transpo kicks off Annual Christmas Food Drive in partnership with Loblaw Companies Limited

Santa and his helpers made a stop at Loblaws, 1980 Ogilvie Road, Gloucester Centre today as part of the 2015 OC Transpo/Loblaw Annual Christmas Food Drive, which will collect donations of non-perishable food items or cash from residents on Saturday, December 5. 

“Every year, not only City employees and their families, but also many thousands of Ottawa residents show their support by donating to this important cause," said Mayor Jim Watson. "This annual Christmas food drive is the oldest and biggest food drive for the Ottawa Food Bank, and helps the most vulnerable members of our community." 

Donations are being accepted on Saturday, December 5 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. at 20 participating Loblaws®, Loblaw greatfood®, Real Canadian Superstore®, Your Independent Grocer®, and nofrills® locations across Ottawa. 

“The OC Transpo/Loblaw Annual Christmas Food Drive has become a wonderful tradition that is now a hallmark of the season,” said Councillor Stephen Blais, Chair of the Transit Commission. “I encourage Ottawa residents to come out this Saturday to support this worthy cause – I can’t think of a better way to kick-off this holiday season.” 

"Each year, we look forward to partnering with OC Transpo and the Ottawa Food Bank on this event as a way of helping put food on the tables of those in our community who need our help the most," said Alan Lawrie, Store Manager, Gloucester Market, Loblaw Companies Limited. 

Now in its 31st year, the annual food drive is a partnership between OC Transpo and Loblaw Companies Limited in co-operation with the Ottawa Food Bank. All food and cash donations donated during the food drive will be distributed through the Ottawa Food Bank, the Stittsville Food Bank and the Kanata Food Cupboard. 

For more information on the 2015 OC Transpo/Loblaw Annual Christmas Food Drive, please visit octranspo.com.

BACKGROUNDER

Locations for the 31st annual 2015 OC Transpo/Loblaw Christmas Food Drive

Ottawa – Donations to the Ottawa Food Bank are being accepted on Saturday, December 5 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. at the 20 participating stores listed below:

Loblaws – 1460 Merivale Rd.
Loblaws – 59 Robertson Rd.
Loblaws – 1980 Baseline Rd.
Loblaws – 1980 Ogilvie Rd.
Loblaws – 3201 Greenbank Rd.
Loblaws – 64 Isabella St.
Loblaws – 2085 Carling Ave.
Loblaws– 1910 St Laurent Blvd.
Loblaws – 363 Rideau St.
Loblaws – 2210C Bank St.
Loblaws – 100 McArthur Rd. 
Loblaws – 200 Earl Grey Dr.  
Real Canadian Superstore – 190 Richmond Rd.
Real Canadian Superstore – 4270 Innes Rd.
Real Canadian Superstore – 760 Eagleson Rd.
Your Independent Grocer  – 1619 Orléans Blvd
Your Independent Grocer – 2681 Alta Vista Dr.
Your Independent Grocer – 685 River Rd.
Your Independent Grocer – 1251 Main St.
Henderickx's nofrills – 1226 Place d'Orléans Dr.

November 27, 2015

City seeking public input on a commemorative naming proposal

The City of Ottawa’s Commemorative Naming Committee is conducting public consultations on a proposal to rename Ottawa Fire Station #83, located at 2352 Roger Stevens Drive, the “Allen Sadler Fire Station”. 

Allen Sadler Fire Station (Ward 21 – Rideau-Goulbourn)

In recognition of Allen Sadler’s extensive community service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to rename Ottawa Fire Station #83, located at 2352 Roger Stevens Drive, the “Allen Sadler Fire Station”. 

Allen Sadler has served the community of North Gower as a volunteer firefighter since 1965, receiving his 50 years of service award in 2015. He serves as a role model for younger firefighters and is known amongst his colleagues to be dependable, approachable and always willing to answer questions. 

In 2005, Allen was recognized as the Station 83 Firefighter of the Year, an award that is voted on by all members of a fire station, and in 2014 he received the District Firefighter of the Year award. 

View the online proposal for “Allen Sadler Fire Station”. 

November 23, 2015

Tips and services to help you find a snow removal contractor

The City of Ottawa provides a number of tips and services to help residents with the clearing of snow from their walkways and driveways. 

The Snow Go Program helps seniors and persons with disabilities find reliable contractors and/or individuals to clear snow from their private driveways and/or walkways. Once matched up with snow removal help, residents are responsible for making payments directly to the individual or contractor. 

Seniors and persons with disabilities can also apply to the Snow Go Assist Program, which provides financial assistance  for a portion of their snow removal costs for eligible participants. 

The Snow Go Programs are administered by local home support agencies that serve local neighbourhoods.  

Also, residents searching for a reputable snow plow contractor can review the roster of licensed snow plow contractors listed on ottawa.ca. You can also find tips such as: 

  • How to handle a door-to-door sales pitch
  • Understand the terms of your contract before signing
  • Check the Better Business Bureau and customer review websites 

For more information about any of these services visit ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401).

November 20, 2015

New tool will help residents who wonder: Where Is My Plow?

There is a new tool on ottawa.ca this winter that will help Ottawa residents know when a City plow will clear their snow-covered residential street. 

Called Where Is My Plow, the web tool allows you to enter your home address and find  the estimated time when your residential street will be plowed during a major storm. Times are estimated using real-time GPS information from the snow plow fleet. The tool will work on any phone, mobile device, laptop or desktop computer. 

Where Is My Plow complements the tools we already have in place to keep residents informed about traffic and construction in Ottawa,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “I’m pleased that we can offer residents one more tool to make driving and living in winter a little more manageable.” 

Residents can use the information from Where Is My Plow to help plan their driveway snow removal efforts and as a reminder to move their cars off the road when plows are passing. 

“The City is committed to keeping residents informed about road conditions before, during and after a storm,” said Councillor Keith Egli, Chair of the City’s Transportation Committee. “Strategic communication is an important element to keeping the City moving.” 

The tool provides timelines for residential streets only and does not provide information for arterial, collector roads or sidewalks. 

"This tool will remove the guessing game of when your street will be clear,” said Councillor Rick Chiarelli, Chair of the City’s Information Technology Sub-Committee. “My hope is that this tool will allow residents to avoid the frustration that comes with clearing their lane-way only to have a plow go by later and block it off with a windrow.” 

November 19, 2015

Planned pre-winter maintenance work on O-Train Trillium Line

On Saturday, November 21 and Sunday, November 22, O-Train service on the Trillium Line will be temporarily replaced by Route 107 bus service to facilitate planned maintenance work before the winter months. The work includes the replacement of cabling and the refurbishment of a rail switch where the O-Train enters and exits the Trillium Line from Walkley Yard. 

While the scheduled maintenance work is carried out, Route 107 will provide bus service parallel to the Trillium Line and operate approximately every 15 minutes on Saturday and Sunday. Transit customers can get detailed information about this service adjustment at octranspo.com, on the O-Train vehicles and at station platforms.  

In addition to Route 107, there may be other bus route options that work better for some customers. Please call 613-741-4390, visit octranspo.com, or octranspo.mobi for travel planning assistance. Schedules are available by calling 613-560-1000 or texting 560560 plus the four-digit bus stop number.  

November 13, 2015

Overnight parking restrictions have changed for 2015

The City of Ottawa has changed its overnight parking restrictions in time for the upcoming winter.

Overnight parking restrictions can be put into effect in Ottawa anytime between Sunday, November 15, 2015 and Friday, April 1, 2016. These restrictions ensure that the City’s snow-clearing crews are able to keep Ottawa’s roads safe and clear for pedestrians, cyclists, public transit, and motorists.

During this period, overnight parking restrictions are automatically enacted when seven centimetres or more of snowfall is forecast by Environment Canada. However, in extenuating circumstances, the City can impose restrictions or issue exemptions regardless of the forecast.

The City of Ottawa will announce parking restrictions and inform residents if there is an exemption through ottawa.ca and the City’s Twitter account @ottawacity.

When restrictions are put into place, parking will not be permitted on Ottawa streets between 1 and 7 a.m.

Vehicles parked on the street when a restriction is in effect will be ticketed, and could be towed. Vehicle owners who have a municipal on-street parking permit are exempt from winter overnight parking restrictions.

What’s new in 2015?

During winter overnight parking bans, residents will have free access to covered City owned parking garages. For more information about which City garages are free during winter overnight parking bans, visit ottawa.ca.

The annual fee structure for on-street parking permits remains unchanged but monthly fees will change by season. This means that permits will be less expensive in the summer months but more expensive in winter to reflect the true cost of maintenance. The new fee structure will take effect in early 2016.

Be in the know about snow

Sign up to receive e-mail or Twitter notifications of overnight parking restrictions at ottawa.ca. After you sign up, you will receive an e-mail or Twitter alert via @ottawacity, every time a winter overnight parking restriction goes into effect or is lifted. The service is free and you can unsubscribe at anytime.

You can also find out if an overnight parking restriction is in effect by calling 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401) or through local media.

November 12, 2015

Mayor Watson inducts Order of Ottawa recipients and the Brian Kilrea Award for Excellence in Coaching recipient

Mayor Jim Watson inducted 14 of Ottawa’s most outstanding residents into the Order of Ottawa during a ceremony this evening at Ottawa City Hall.

Those inducted by Mayor Watson into the Order of Ottawa are: Ben Babelowsky, Ron Burke, Guy Cousineau, Bill Malhotra, Paul Meek, Vera Mitchell, Wendy Muckle, Bryan Murray, Alicia S. Natividad, Marion Rattray, The Honourable Allan Rock, Ernest G. Tannis, Simone Thibault, Ewart Walters and Gary Zed.

Mr. Bill Malhotra, one of the 15 recipients selected to receive the award, was unavailable to attend this evening. He will be honoured next year during the 2016 Order of Ottawa ceremony.

“I am honoured to award the 2015 Order of Ottawa to these remarkable individuals in recognition of their outstanding contributions to our city,” said Mayor Watson. “They have not only made Ottawa a better place to live, work and raise a family, they have shown us how one person’s actions can make a difference in the lives of others within our community.”

The Brian Kilrea Award for Excellence in Coaching was awarded this evening to Mrs. Dasa Lelli. Mrs. Lelli was recognized for founding the Kanata Rhythmic Sportive Gymnastics Club in 1975. As head coach, she has led the not-for-profit organization to become the largest rhythmic gymnastics club in Ontario.

A list of Order of Ottawa inductees will be prominently displayed on a wall on the first floor of City Hall.

This civic award recognizes exceptional citizen contributions in the many areas of city life, including arts and culture, business, community service, education, public service, labour, communications and media, science, medicine, sports and entertainment, or other fields of endeavour that benefit the residents of Ottawa.

Recipients of the Order of Ottawa were chosen by a Selection Committee comprised of the Mayor, City Clerk and Solicitor, Chief of Police, Chief of Protocol, City Archivist and the Chief Executive Officer, Library Services.  

October 21, 2015

Survey results will contribute to renewed Accessibility Plan

The City of Ottawa is updating its multi-year Accessibility Plan and is encouraging residents to provide input into the plan through a survey available on the City’s website, ottawa.ca.

Residents have until November 27 to complete the survey and share their innovative ideas on how City programs, services and infrastructure can be made more accessible and responsive to diverse communities. Once you have completed the survey, please share the link with family, colleagues and associates who might also like to contribute ideas.

The City is committed to providing equal access to services, programs, goods and facilities to residents, visitors and employees with disabilities. This commitment led to the creation of a multi-year Accessibility Plan in 2012 which will be updated and renewed in early 2016.

Anyone who has difficulty accessing the survey or who wants more information on the survey or the City’s Accessibility Plan can visit ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1.

October 17, 2015

Five ways you can make a difference during Waste Reduction Week

Waste Reduction Week, October 19 to 25, is an ideal time to take action to reduce waste in your home or workplace. The City wants to help you, with tips and programs to help divert waste - two of which are taking place this week. Every little bit helps extend the life of Ottawa’s landfill.

  • Give Away Weekend

One person’s trash is another’s treasure. Set out your gently used items at the curb on October 24 and 25 for the Fall Ottawa Give Away Weekend. Tour your neighbourhood and city to find hidden treasures. 

Simply place items such as clothes, furniture, sports equipment, books and more at the curb and place stickers or signs on items with the word "FREE." 

At the end of the day, you could donate uncollected items to a local charity. Construction materials can be donated to Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore.

  • Waste Explorer

Don’t know where an item goes? Visit the waste explorer at ottawa.ca.

  • Household Hazardous Waste Depot

During Waste Reduction Week, the City will host its final one-day Household Hazardous Waste Depot of 2015. 

Date:  Sunday, October 25
Time:  8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: OC Transpo Park & Ride at Fallowfield Station
3355 Fallowfield Road

For a list of retailers that accept returns of household hazardous waste, please visit ottawa.ca 

  • Take it Back! Program

This is a voluntary program for businesses and charitable organizations to take back specific used items such as used motor oil, paint, batteries, CFL bulbs, computer equipment, used clothing, plastic bags and more. The Take it Back! Partners ensure the household items are reused, recycled or disposed of properly. Visit ottawa.ca for more information. 

  • Less is more

You can reduce the waste you discard by buying less of something, buying reusable products, choosing products with less packaging, or recycling packaging materials. Wherever you make your purchases, chances are the store you’re in is one of the City’s Take it Back! partners.

For more information on waste management and recycling, visit ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1

October 13, 2015

Partnering & Investing in Community Safety

The Ottawa Police Services Board (OPSB) and Ottawa Police Service (OPS) are currently developing the 2016-2018 OPS Business Plan. The plan will outline the future direction of our police service. We want to hear from you - the members of our community.

Let's Chat: Priorities

Join us for an opportunity to explore the future of policing in Ottawa as we develop the 2016-2018 Business Plan.

Thursday, November 5, 2015
6:00-9:00 pm
St. Elias Centre, 750 Ridgewood Ave

Register today!

October 7, 2015

Swim or Skate tickets make the perfect Halloween treat

Give the ghosts and goblins at your door a treat this Halloween that they are sure to love!

During the month of October, the City of Ottawa is offering Trick or Swim or Skate tickets as a healthy and fun alternative to the traditional candy overload. Kids ages 3 to 15 can redeem their ticket from November 1, 2015 to January 31, 2016 during regular scheduled public swims and skates at City pools and select arenas.

Tickets are affordably priced at $10 for 10 tickets, and are available at the following locations.
Bob MacQuarrie Recreation Complex-Orléans
Canterbury Pool
Champagne Fitness Centre
Deborah Anne Kirwan Pool
François Dupuis Recreation Centre
Goulbourn Recreation Complex
Jack Purcell Pool
Jim Durrell Complex
Kanata Leisure Centre
Kanata Recreation Complex
Lowertown Pool
McNabb Arena
Nepean Sportsplex
Plant Recreation Centre
Ray Friel Recreation Complex
Richcraft Recreation Complex-Kanata
Sawmill Creek Pool
St-Laurent Recreation Complex
Splash Wave Pool
Walter Baker Sports Centre

Please note that tickets are not valid for wave swims.

More information about public swimming and skating can be found at ottawa.ca/recreation.

October 5, 2015

Streetside Spots will give new identity to parking spaces

The City of Ottawa has launched the Streetside Spots pilot project today by inviting businesses and community groups to redefine parking spaces with different looks, designs and uses.

Streetside spots are small outdoor spaces created by temporarily re-purposing on-street parking spaces.  They contribute to a vibrant and liveable community while sharing the right of way space with pedestrians of all abilities, cyclists and drivers.

The City will grant up to 25 permits to allow on-street parking spaces to be converted to one of three forms:
Streetside parklet – a public space that may contain seating, shading, bike parking or a games table.
Streetside patio – a private space reserved for patrons of a café or restaurant that does not have an existing patio.
Streetside vending stall – an outdoor business space for the sale of merchandise.

For local businesses, Streetside Spots can be an extension of their regular business locations.

The City will grant permits for the spring-to-fall season of 2016. As part of the criteria, an eligible parking space must be:
On a street with a speed limit of 50 km/h or less
Located in a parking zone that is not subject to time limits
In a location that has no existing patio or an opportunity to get an outdoor patio under the Encroachment By-Law

For more information on Streetside Spots, including applications and design criteria, please visit the City’s website, ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1. The application deadline is February 15.

September 23, 2015

Autumn in the City dazzles with plenty of fun and fearsome activities

Amidst a colourful spectacle of performers and mascots, Mayor Jim Watson and representatives from the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG) showcased the many festivals, events and activities taking place in Ottawa throughout the fall season during an event at Lansdowne today.

“The weather might be cooling down, but there are numerous festivals and activities that are just ramping up for autumn that will keep you and your family busy all season long,” said Mayor Watson. “Our city has an endless supply of recreational, cultural, artistic, and exciting activities planned for the coming months, and I would encourage residents and visitors to Ottawa to join in the fun.”

The City has made it easy to find out what’s going on in and around Ottawa by compiling a list of events and activities on ottawa.ca. Regular updates about coming events will also be shared on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Youtube and Instagram), and on the City’s online magazine.

The list includes information about what’s happening at Lansdowne, City theatres and museums, festivals, fairs, craft sales, recreation and active-living activities, sporting events and much, much more. Many of the activities profiled are free of charge.

“Autumn at TD Place will offer a spectacular range of live events,” said OSEG CEO Bernie Ashe. “We have concerts, the Panda Game, 67’s hockey, REDBLACKS football and Fury FC Soccer.  It’s a great time to be in our city.”

Here is a sample of what’s coming up:

  • Theatres:
    • Centrepointe Theatres: Canadian comic icons Howie Mandel on October 2 and Ron James on November 12; ArcAttack on November 6; Illusionist Darcy Oake on November 10; the Disney Channel TV’s Imagination Movers for two shows on October 24, and Grammy Award winners The Okee Dokee Brothers who will bring their Holiday Hootenany to Ottawa on December 19
    • Shenkman Arts Centre: Mackenzie Rhythm Section with opening act Bella Cat on October 23; Classic Albums Live: Supertramp – Crime of the Century on October 24; Café Classico featuring G’froerer and Gott on November 8; Giggle and Stomp, a chamber music concert for children 3 to 8 on November 14; Yes Songs: The Concert on November 19; jazz legend Molly Johnson on December 3; and chamber ensemble Quartetto Gelato on December 19
  • City museums and Archives:
    • Smashing Pumpkins is taking place at Cumberland Heritage Village Museum on October 3 and 4 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Learn all about the mechanics of catapults before sending your pumpkin flying!
    • The City Archives hosts Taverns and Troublemakers, an exhibit about Ottawa during Prohibition, starting October 1 until March 19, 2016
  • City Hall:
    • Karsh-Masson Gallery features Allyson Glenn – Catalyst until October 12 and Jason Paradis – Ottawa Night, from October 22 to November 29
    • Barbara Ann Scott Gallery
    • Ottawa Sports Hall of Fame
  • Festivals and fairs:
    • Carp Fair, September 24-27
    • Metcalfe Fair, October 1-4
    • Capital Vélo Fest – 2015 Tour La Nuit  - on September 25
    • Harvest Noir on October 3
    • Ottawa International Writers Festival, October 22-29
    • Ottawa Wine and Cheese Festival from October 30-November 1
    • Oktoberfest Ottawa, October 1-3
    • And much more...
  • TD Place:
  • The Ottawa REDBLACKS have home games on September 26, October 1, 6 and 16
  • Ottawa Fury fans can cheer on their team October 4 and 18 for the final two regular season home games 
  • 67’s hockey begins September 27, the first of 34 regular-season home games. A complete schedule can be found at Ottawa67s.com
  • Alabama Shakes, Chris de Burgh, Godsmack and Peter Pan on Ice are all performing at TD Place this fall. Visit TDplace.ca on a regular basis for event listings and ticket information
  • Pedro the Panda will be won by either Carleton University or uOttawa on October 3
  • Halloween activities throughout October:
    • Ninth annual Trick or Treat with Mayor Jim Watson at City Hall on October 24
    • Haunted Historic Village at Cumberland Heritage Village Museum, taking place on weekends in October, starting October 9 and ending October 30
    • A traditional séance at the Billings Estate National Historical Site on the evenings of October 16, 17 and 18. Tickets available for purchase, but they go fast, so don’t wait
    • The Nepean Museum will host a Pumpkin Party on October 25
    • Billings Estate National Historic Site is hosting a Halloween Party on October 31
    • Fairfields Heritage House will have a trick-or-treat station set up at the driveway on Bellfield Street on October 31 from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Lansdowne:
    • TreeFest Ottawa photography exhibit - September 23-October 12
    • Workshop Wednesdays are free hands-on visual arts workshops for all ages taking place September 23, October 28, and November 25
    • Full Moon Yoga, September 27       
    • Runway for Hope for CHEO, September 27
    • Make a Wish Foundation fundraiser, October 3
    • Light the Night Walk for Leukemia and Lymphoma, October 24
    • Pumpkin Derby and Fall Community Day on October 31 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
    • Maker Faire Ottawa, November 7-8
    • Ottawa Guild of Potters Pottery Sale, November 27-29
  • Active living: The City has a vast network of multi-use pathways for an enjoyable stroll or cycle, or you can enjoy the City’s forested parks. The changing leaves will make your stroll or cycle and memorable one! Stay active by going for a swim or skate at a City recreation facility.

Residents and visitors can use ottawa.ca to discover more about these and many other activities and events taking place this autumn.  Autumn is the perfect season to explore your city.

September 17, 2015

Ottawa seeking input on regulations surrounding coach houses

Residents are invited to review a City of Ottawa discussion paper on secondary dwelling units and to offer comments on proposed changes to the Zoning By-law.

Secondary dwelling units are self-contained living units either attached to or on the same grounds as a detached or semi-detached home, duplex building or townhouse. While the Province of Ontario requires municipalities to allow all such secondary dwelling units, the City of Ottawa currently only permits those within primary residential buildings, and not those in detached structures built on the same grounds. The City of Ottawa needs to change its regulations in order to align with Provincial requirements.

Residents and stakeholders are encouraged to read the discussion paper at ottawa.ca/coachhouses to learn more about the considerations that will define these units, such as property setbacks, minimum lot size, maximum building height, design and landscaping.

In the City of Ottawa, secondary dwelling units not located within the primary residence – a small apartment in a backyard of a home or above a detached garage, for example – will be termed coach houses. Ottawa is one of the first municipalities in Ontario to tackle this issue and may be the first Ontario city to permit coach houses.

Like other secondary units, coach houses would provide discreet opportunities to introduce more dwellings in established neighbourhoods while maintaining the character of those neighbourhoods. They would offer more housing options and support the City’s goals, set out in the Official Plan and the Older Adult Plan, of providing a diverse supply of housing.

Residents can submit comments from Tuesday, September 15 to Wednesday, October 14 through the online questionnaire available at ottawa.ca/coachhouses. Final recommendations will be presented at a public information session in 2016.

September 14, 2015

Try It First!

From September 21 to 27, you’re invited to participate in our aquafitness, cycling and group fitness classes or workout in our conditioning centres FREE of charge.

Simply visit one of our participating facilities to set up your free membership access card.

This is a great opportunity to ‘test drive’ our conditioning centres and the group exercise classes you’ve always wanted to try.

Try before you buy and discover a new and healthy you!

Participating Facilities

 

September 9, 2015

Construction begins to extend pathway next to O-Train Trillium Line

Construction work will begin on Wednesday, September 9 to extend the Trillium multi-use pathway, located east of the O-Train Trillium Line, from Young Street to just south of Carling Avenue. This project is being built in partnership with the National Capital Commission. 

The existing multi-use pathway from Young Street to Carling Avenue will be closed during the construction period. Please follow signed detours. During construction, cyclists and pedestrians will still be able to access Hickory Street Bridge and Adeline Street.

The work will include construction of a new asphalt multi-use pathway, pathway lighting, a raised crossing at Beech Street, a new connection to Adeline Street/Hickory Street Bridge, and a new signalized cross-ride at Carling Avenue. Once completed, cyclists and pedestrians will be able to use this new link from the Ottawa River Pathway to existing pathways south of Carling Avenue. Construction will be complete in spring 2016.

With all of the construction-related activities underway, residents are encouraged to be flexible with commuting times, stagger work hours or use alternative means for travel. The public is asked to consider options such as transit, walking, cycling or carpooling.

The City of Ottawa has tools on ottawa.ca to help motorists and transit users plan their routes and manage their commute including:

For current information about traffic and construction around the city, visit ottawa.ca.

September 3, 2015

Most traffic impacts already in place as fall construction set to start

The City will be engaged in construction at more than 120 sites throughout Ottawa this autumn. This update was provided at today’s construction and mobility technical briefing. While 45 projects will start up this fall, a majority of the construction activity is now underway with traffic impacts already in place.

Heading into the fall, construction of the O-Train Confederation Line will continue to be the major focus. As a result, the shift of buses from the Transitway in the east onto the new bus-only lanes on Highway 417 and Ottawa Road 174 will still be among the biggest ongoing traffic and mobility impacts for residents.

OC Transpo reminds customers that all stations between Hurdman and Blair, except for Cyrville, remain open for service. On Sunday, September 6, the existing Hurdman Station platform will be replaced by a new platform just east of the current one. Customers who have not travelled on OC Transpo since June and who may not be familiar with the service adjustments that began at that time should visit octranspo.com to plan their trip before they travel.

LRT construction will continue to impact motorists on Nicholas Street between Highway 417 and Laurier Avenue. Traffic restrictions will also remain on Rideau Street between Sussex Drive and Dalhousie Street, related to construction of the Rideau Confederation Line station.

In late September the Ministry of Transportation Ontario (MTO) will also replace the Kent Street overpass on Highway 417, which will result in lane reductions and a weekend highway closure.

With all of the construction-related activities underway, residents are encouraged to be flexible with commuting times, stagger work hours or use alternative means for travel. The public is asked to consider options such as transit, walking and cycling.

The City of Ottawa has tools on ottawa.ca to help motorists and transit users plan their routes and manage their commute including:

For current information about traffic and construction around the city, visit ottawa.ca

September 1, 2015

Welcome back Students!

The City of Ottawa would like to welcome all new students and wish you all the success in your academic pursuits this year.

There is always so much you need to know when you first move to a new city. We’ve created this page to help you discover everything you need to know about living in Ottawa.

For services requests to the City such as paying parking tickets, reporting potholes or obtaining blue box, black box or green bin, visit the ServiceOttawa portion of the website. For more information, follow the City of Ottawa on Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, Facebook and Flickr.

Garbage and Recycling

Getting around

Public Health

Public Safety

  • We want you to have a good time but remember we do have noise and other by-laws.
  • Do you have a pet? Don’t forget to have it registered.
  • New city? New apartment? Be fire safe and always have two ways out.
  • Moving out for the first time? Watch what you heat - cooking fires are the #1 cause of fires in Ontario.
  • Whether you live in a home, an apartment or in residence on campus, make sure your dwelling has a working smoke alarm!
  • Stay safe with the right stuff. Pack an emergency kit with a radio, water, flashlight, batteries, snacks and important contact numbers.
  • Enjoy your first year safely – make preparing for the possibility of disasters and emergencies part of your first year checklist.

Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services

Social Services

  • Having difficulties and not sure who to call or where to get help? Dial 2-1-1 to access reliable information on community and social services
  • Visit YouthZone for employment opportunities and services, volunteering and health information.
  • Want to make a difference in Ottawa? Consider joining the Ottawa Youth Engagement Committee (OYEC), which helps encourage youth engagement and to amplify youth voice and representation at the City of Ottawa.
  • New to Canada? The Government of Canada uses Social Insurance Numbers (SINs) to keep track of all Canadian workers. You must have a SIN to work in Canada.
  • Low on funds? In search of child care? There are options for you.

 

August 27, 2015

Labour Day schedule changes

The City of Ottawa reminds residents of the following schedule changes for Labour Day, Monday, September 7. 

Client services:

  • The City’s Provincial Offences Court, located at 100 Constellation Crescent, will also be closed. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, September 8. 
  • The City’s 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters requiring the City’s immediate attention. Call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. For persons with a hearing-related disability, call TTY: 613-580-2401.

Green bin, recycling and garbage collection:

  • There will be no curbside green bin, recycling or garbagecollectionon Labour Day. Labour Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, September 8. In addition, the collection of green bin, recycling materials and garbage will be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week. For curbside collection enquiries, refer to the collection calendar tool
  • There will be nomulti-residential bulky items, green bin and recycling container collectionon Labour Day. Labour Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, September 8 . Recycling container and green bin collection will also be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week. However, multi-residential garbage container collectionis not delayed and collection will take place on its regularly scheduled day during the week of September 7. 
  • The Trail Waste Facility will be closed. 

Parking:

  • All City of Ottawa parking regulations and restrictions will apply during this time. 

Transit service:

  • OC Transpo will operate a Sunday schedule and the $8.30 DayPass will be valid as a Family DayPass. 
  • New fall service goes into effect on Sunday, September 6. Residents are also reminded that the Transitway between Hurdman and Blair is closed to allow for O-Train Confederation Line construction. All stations except for Cyrville remain open to customers. New timetables are available at octranspo.com and octranspo.mobi. Call 613-560-1000 or text 560560 plus your four-digit bus stop number for real-time schedule information. For more information, holiday schedules and travel planning, phone 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.  
  • The OC Transpo Information Centre (613-741-4390) will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • The OC Transpo Customer Relations Office (613-842-3600) will be closed. 
  • Para Transpo will operate a holiday service on September 7. Regular scheduled trips are automatically cancelled. Customers may book trips for Labour Day on or after August 31 by calling 613-244-7272. 
  • Para Transpo operations:
  • Customer service (613-842-3681) – closed
  • Administration (613-244-1289) – closed
  • Taxi coupons (613-842-3670) – closed
  • Reservations line (613-244-7272) – open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Trip cancellation and general inquiries (613-244-4636) – open 6 a.m.to 12:30 a.m.

Recreation services:

  • Some indoor pools and fitness centres will be open for public swimming and fitness classes with modified schedules. Please check with ottawa.ca or the facility of your choice for details.
  • Most registered programs at swimming pools, community centres and arenas are cancelled; however, clients should check with their facility to confirm, as some exceptions will apply.

Ottawa Public Health:

  • Site program – Site office at 179 Clarence Street will be closed; however, the site mobile van will be operating on a regular schedule from 5 p.m. to 11:30 p.m. 

Cultural Services:

  • City of Ottawa Archives, arts centres, galleries, theatres and museums will be closed; however, clients should check ottawa.ca or their facility to confirm, as some exceptions may apply. 

Archives Services:

  • The City of Ottawa Archives Reference Services and Gallery 112 will be closed.

Municipal child care services:

  • City-operated Child Care Centres will be closed. 

Ottawa Public Library:

All branches and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, September 8.

August 24, 2015

OC Transpo seeking feedback on Para Transpo eligibility policies and booking processes

OC Transpo is currently reviewing its policies for both Para Transpo customer eligibility and booking processes.

Public consultations will take place on September 17, 22, 30 and October 6 at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West. There are a total of 16 sessions, four per day, with a registration limit of 20 people per session. Para Transpo customers, caregivers, community agencies, hospital representatives, long-term care facilities and the general public are invited to register.

Session details are as follows:

Thursday, September 17
Eligibility – 10:30 a.m. to noon.
Booking – 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Eligibility – 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Booking – 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Colonel By Room, second floor
Registration deadline: September 11

Tuesday, September 22
Booking – 10:30 a.m. to noon
Eligibility – 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Booking – 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Eligibility – 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Festival Boardroom, first floor
Registration deadline: September 17

Wednesday, September 30
Eligibility – 10:30 a.m. to noon
Booking – 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Eligibility – 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Booking – 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Colonel By Room, second floor
Registration deadline: September 24

Tuesday, October 6
Booking – 10:30 a.m. to noon
Eligibility – 1 to 2:30 p.m.
Booking – 3:30 to 5 p.m.
Eligibility – 6 to 7:30 p.m.
Location: Colonel By Room, second floor
Registration deadline: September 30

To register for one of these sessions, please visit octranspo.com, call 613-842-3636 ext. 2652, email consultations@ottawa.ca or fax 613-244-4329.
Customers and stakeholders who are unavailable to attend a session, but still want to contribute, are invited to provide feedback between August 24 and October 9 by filling out a questionnaire available:

On Para Transpo mini buses and accessible taxis
Online at octranspo.com
By email at consultations@ottawa.ca
By phone at 613-842-3636 ext. 2652 (TTY: 613-244-4833)
By fax at 613-244-4329

The questions posed in the questionnaire will be identical to those posed at the consultation sessions.

OC Transpo is committed to reviewing and updating its policies, processes and services to ensure they are meeting the needs of customers.

For more information on the Para Transpo stakeholder consultations, visit octranspo.com

August 20, 2015

Early birds can register now for Tim Hortons Cleaning the Capital

The City of Ottawa and Tim Hortons are pleased to announce the annual Tim Hortons Cleaning the Capital campaign, which will take place from September 15 to October 15. Early-bird registration is now available.

Registration is quick and easy:

  • Go to ottawa.ca, or call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401) to register for the cleanup. The interactive map on our website will show you which locations have already been claimed, allow you to register your own project site and choose the cleanup supplies that you need.
  • Select a location such as a park, ravine, shoreline, bus stop, pathway or any public area that requires litter pickup or graffiti removal.

Win prizes

Volunteers who register their cleanup project before September 15 have a chance to win one of many early bird prizes donated by our generous sponsors. Volunteers who submit a final cleanup report by October 31 will be eligible for more prizes.

Tim Hortons Cleaning the Capital is a city-wide event that brings together neighbours, communities and friends to help keep Ottawa clean and green! Last year alone, 80,000 volunteers collected almost 140,000 kg of litter from 1,400 locations.

This is a great opportunity for families and friends to work together on community cleanup projects that help make Ottawa clean, green, graffiti-free and litter-free. Tim Hortons Cleaning the Capital is also an excellent way for high school students to earn their community volunteer hours.

July 24, 2015

Get ready to register for fall and winter recreation programs

The Recreation eGuide and Mon Cyberguide francophone des loisirs for fall and winter programsare now online at ottawa.ca. Choose from a wide variety of activities for all ages including swimming lessons, fitness classes, general interest courses, sports and instruction in the arts. 

  • Registration for swimming and aquafitness classes begins online and by phone (613-580-2588) on Monday, August 10 at 9 p.m. and in person at City recreation facilities on Tuesday, August 11 during regular business hours. 
  • Registration for all other classes begins online and by phone (613-580-2588) on Wednesday, August 12 at 9 p.m. and in person at City recreation facilities on Thursday, August 13 during regular business hours. 

To register online or by phone residents will need a client barcode and family PIN numbers. The City expects high volumes of online registrants throughout the first week of registration, particularly the first evening, which could result in a longer registration experience than usual. 

Residents who do not have access to the Internet are encouraged to visit City recreation centres or libraries with public Internet access. They can also visit any Client Service Centre where customer service staff can help with registration. Some community centres may provide printed brochures for their local activities.

July 24, 2015

City cautions public to be aware of wild parsnip

Wild parsnip is a noxious weed commonly found within the city in areas of uncultivated land, roadside ditches, nature trails, as well as surrounding rural and residential properties.

It is rarely found in regularly maintained urban environments; however, it is prominent in rural areas and suburban areas where grass cutting is not completed as frequently, and can then be spread to adjacent maintained areas such as parks, pathways, and, in some cases, private property.

The city recommends that people stay on official trails, do not touch plants, and keep animals on a leash. It is also recommended that you learn how to identify wild parsnip in order to avoid it. Wild parsnip poses some health and environmental threats including:

  • Toxic sap found in wild parsnip leaves, stems and flowers can cause severe skin rashes and blisters when it comes in contact with the skin in the presence of sunlight. Sap can present both direct and indirect health risks as clothing, and equipment can remain sources of exposure.
  • Wild parsnip’s ability to rapidly regenerate reduces native plants’ abilities to compete for space, which reduces biodiversity.
  • Incidences of wild parsnip pose potential negative impacts to residents and outdoor workers alike as it continues to spread year over year.

The Public Works Department has completed its 2015 pilot Wild Parsnip Strategy to test the effectiveness of various methods to control and reduce wild parsnip on City property and its spread onto private property. The results of this project will help in developing a long-term management strategy. The strategy included the following:

  • Testing the effectiveness of herbicide applications to control the plant.
  • Completing increased mowing in highly infested areas.
  • Tracking infestation levels. An updated map will be posted to Ottawa.ca within the next two weeks.
  • Developing an education and public health awareness campaign. Watch for signs in city parks to identify areas with high infestation levels that should be avoided.

Report wild parsnip on City property by calling 3-1-1 if the issue is related to an immediate hazard to people, or let us know with this on-line reporting form. Residents can also call 613-580-6744 to speak to an Ottawa Public Health inspector. For more information about wild parsnip, please visit ottawa.ca.

July 13, 2015

City warns residents about phoney sales-pitches

The City of Ottawa continues to warn residents to be vigilant of door-to-door salespeople making false claims about working with or on behalf of the City.

The City has recently received complaints from residents who have been contacted by salespeople falsely claiming to be working on behalf of the City and requesting access to resident’s homes to “inspect” furnaces and air conditioners.

The City of Ottawa is committed to protecting public safety, including protecting homeowners and residents from fraud. The City ensures that all of its employees carry City-issued photo identification to be presented upon request. Except for emergency situations, any visits that may require access to homes or businesses by City staff or City contractors are scheduled in advance. Any resident who is directly contacted by a person claiming to work for or on behalf of the City of Ottawa is asked to check their identification and, if concerns remain, to contact the City by calling 3-1-1 (613-580-2400).

June 23, 2015

City to host one-hour Budget 101

Residents are invited to a one-hour budget primer session on June 24, offering a look at how the City of Ottawa spends and how the annual municipal budget is put together.

City Treasurer Marian Simulik and Deputy City Treasurer Isabelle Jasmin will lead the session, which will consist of an overview of the budget process followed by a question-and-answer period.

When: Wednesday, June 24, 7:30 p.m.
Where: City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West
English: Champlain Room, 2nd floor
French: Honeywell Room, 2nd floor

If you are planning to attend, please email Grace.Okeefe@ottawa.ca to help the City gauge expected attendance.

This event is part of ongoing efforts to increase public understanding and engagement around the municipal budget. More information is available at ottawa.ca/BudgetPrimer.

June 23, 2015

OC Transpo makes major service adjustments June 28

On Sunday, June 28, new OC Transpo summer schedules begin, along with route improvements and adjustments to routes travelling along a section of the Transitway, which will close between Blair and Hurdman Stations for construction of the O-Train Confederation Line.

Light rail construction is shifting east this summer

When the Transitway road section closes June 28, bus routes will be adjusted between Blair and Campus Stations. Cyrville Station will be closed, and some routes will no longer stop at Lees, Hurdman, Train or St‑Laurent Stations. These adjustments will evolve as more sections of the Transitway are closed over the next three years, until the O-Train Confederation Line opens in 2018.

Most bus routes that use this section of the Transitway will travel on Highway 417 and Road 174 to benefit from new bus-only lanes and other improvements, and to provide the quickest trip to and from downtown. Travel time will, however, increase on certain trips, and some riders will need to make an additional transfer.

The following mitigation efforts have been set in place:

  • New bus-only lanes, built on portions of Road 174 and Highway 417, will be used by east-end routes to help speed up service.
  • Some routes will bypass stations to avoid delays.
  • Two new bus routes will be added to improve transportation options for east-end transit customers – Route 91 will supplement Route 95 between Trim and Baseline Stations from Monday to Friday, providing a faster trip downtown, and Route 92 will replace Route 96A.
  • Bus routes and transfer options have been carefully planned to minimize inconvenience to customers.
  • Service will be monitored closely and adjusted if possible.

Routing adjustments will affect the following: peak period routes 20-77 and 192-283, and Routes 6, 18, 94, 95, 96, 101, 114, 124, 126, 127, 128, 129, 176, 202, 401 and 451. Customers should use the Travel Planner at octranspo.com to find their best travel option.

Construction of new light-rail stations at Blair, Cyrville, St-Laurent and Train will affect customers as follows:  

  • Blair Station will move to a temporary location near Blair Road. The retail store will close, but the pedestrian access to Telesat and Pineview will be maintained.
  • Cyrville Station will close for three years, but service will operate nearby on Cyrville Road.
  • Service at St-Laurent Station will move to the upper level platform and a new ramp will connect with Highway 417 westbound. Some routes will bypass St-Laurent Station eastbound.
  • Train Station will be relocated onto the VIA Rail Ottawa Station ring road. The stop will be served by Routes 92 and 96 only.

Further details, schedules and maps are available at ontrack2018.ca.

Summer service improvements

  • Two new routes – 162 and 165 – will provide local service in Stittsville and Kanata North respectively for improved connections. Kanata will also see increased frequency on Route 93 to Kanata North, improved hours on Route 161, and extensions to Routes 161 and 168 to serve new commercial and residential areas and reduce walking distances. Route 164 will become a peak period route and Route 96A will be renumbered Route 92, which will operate along Campeau Drive to replace Route 164.
  • Routes 35, 120, 135 and 136 will be revised slightly in Orléans South to better serve growing residential areas, reduce walking distances and improve connections.
  • Route 116 will be modified to have some trips serve the commercial district on Hunt Club Road.
  • Frequency will be improved on Routes 1 and 7 on weekends to better serve Lansdowne Park, and on Route 177 serving Barrhaven South and the Minto Recreation Complex.

Special summer weekend service

  • Service to local museums and beaches will operate on weekends and holidays throughout the summer until September 7.
  • Route 129 will serve the Canada Aviation and Space Museum and Route 185 will operate to the Agriculture Museum and Experimental Farm. Route 198, which started June 20, will serve Petrie Island.

Summer schedules

  • New schedules will reflect the lower demand for service during the summer vacation period.
  • School routes will be suspended until the fall, and there will be minor schedule reductions on mainline and peak period routes.
  • New schedules are available at OC Transpo Sales Centres, by calling 613-741-4390, and at octranspo.com.

The next service change will occur on September 6.

For automated bus arrival information, customers can call 613-560-1000, or text 560560, plus their four-digit bus stop number. For more information and travel planning, visit octranspo.com or call 613-741-4390.

June 17, 2015

OC Transpo and Safety Working Group launch customer safety campaign and new online incident reporting system

In partnership with the Transit Safety Stakeholder Working Group, OC Transpo today launched its 2015 customer safety campaign and new online incident reporting tool, further enhancing its commitment to the safety and security of its customers, staff and the Ottawa community.

“OC Transpo and the Transit Commission are committed to continuing to enhance an already strong safety culture at OC Transpo,” said Councillor Stephen Blais, Chair of the City’s Transit Commission. “The 2014 Customer Survey showed that 90 per cent of transit customers felt safe and secure on the transit system, but any incident is one too many. The 2015 customer safety information campaign will remind customers that no incident is too small to report – and the online incident reporting tool will make it easy and hassle-free to file a report.”

Transit safety and security is a joint responsibility of OC Transpo front-line workers and staff and other City services, including the Ottawa Police Service, transit customers and the larger community. The 2015 customer safety campaign and online reporting tool emphasizes the importance of letting OC Transpo know when you or someone else is being threatened, bothered, or encounters any type of violence while using public transit.

“OC Transpo cares about the safety and security of our customers and staff,” said John Manconi, General Manager of Transit Services. “The collaborative effort put forth by the Safety Stakeholder Working Group produced what you see here today – a robust 2015 customer safety campaign and a new online incident reporting system that will greatly benefit our customers, staff and the Ottawa community as whole. The Safety Stakeholder Working Group’s knowledge, feedback and passion were paramount to the success of today, and on behalf of OC Transpo, I wish to thank them for their contributions.”

A Safety Stakeholder Working Group was established in 2013 and brought forward excellent ideas, strategies and feedback into the development of the promotional campaign, website and online reporting system. The Working Group is comprised of OC Transpo staff and the following key stakeholders: Women’s Initiatives for Safer Environments (WISE), Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW), City for All Women Initiative (CAWI), the Sexual Assault Support Centre (SASC), the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre and Hollaback!Ottawa.

“We are delighted that we have been able to build a partnership with OC Transpo that allows us to bring the voice of our members to the table,” said Julie Lalonde from Hollaback!Ottawa.

“WISE is encouraged by the results from the Safety Stakeholder Working Group, which led to key improvements to the online reporting system,” said Valerie Collicott from WISE Ottawa. “The new online reporting system will allow first-hand, anonymous and third party reporting. The public education campaign will allow us all to respond and learn how to support each other, and the improved website will give us more effective information on customer safety and security.”

In June 2014, a panel from the American Public Transit Association (APTA) presented the results of its March 2014 peer review of current system safety and security strategies and practices to support the Ten Point Safety Plan. The work that is being launched aligns with the recommendations made through the APTA peer review.

Transit customers are encouraged to tell OC Transpo about any experience that makes them feel unsafe or uncomfortable by going to octranspo.com and filing an incident report. If a customer is not comfortable reporting online, they can call Transit Law at 613-741-2478 (TTY: 613-842-3699) and file a verbal report.

For more information, visit octranspo.com

June 15, 2015

Open House on widening of Airport Parkway and Lester Road

The City of Ottawa invites residents to an Open House to learn more about and discuss the Airport Parkway and Lester Road Widening Environmental Assessment Study.

The study will help determine the most appropriate means to accommodate and manage increasing transportation requirements related to growth in the surrounding communities and airport lands.

This open house will take place from 6 to 8:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 17 in Ellwood Hall at the Jim Durrell Recreation Centre (1265 Walkley Road) and will include a presentation at 7 p.m. Study team members will be on hand to answer questions.

The presentation and displays will provide an overview of the study progress to date, including alternative designs considered as well as evaluation criteria and methodology used to determine the preliminary preferred design.

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa. If you require special accommodation, please call or e-mail the project lead before the event. Contact information can be found at ottawa.ca/airportparkway, along with additional information about the study. Materials presented at the open house will also be posted on the website for those unable to attend.

June 10, 2015

Vimy Memorial Bridge earns International Award of Distinction

The Vimy Memorial Bridge has received the prestigious Gustav Lindenthal Medal from the International Bridge Conference. The bridge was designed by Parsons for the City of Ottawa.

The medal was presented during the conference awards dinner in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This annual award recognizes outstanding achievement in bridge engineering that is also esthetically and environmentally pleasing.

“This bridge is a stunning piece of architecture that spans the Rideau Canal system, a designated Historic Site in Canada, as well as a recognized World Heritage Site by UNESCO,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “Whether arriving by land or water, it serves as a welcoming and impressive gateway to our city.”

The bridge, with its unique triple tubular arch formation, was designed and built to meet the stringent guidelines set by the City of Ottawa and the various approval agencies including the National Capital Commission, Parks Canada, the Rideau Valley Conservation Authority, First Nations (Algonquin of Ontario), Transport Canada and Transport Canada Marine.

“Parsons’ design is respectful of the environment, heritage and culture of Ottawa, said Todd Wager, Parsons Group President. “We’re proud that this beautiful bridge is contributing to the quality of life in Ottawa and becoming an important city landmark.”

The Vimy Memorial Bridge is made up of four general-purpose lanes, two auxiliary turning lanes, two dedicated transit lanes, two on-road cycling lanes and sidewalks in each direction. The bridge connects the communities of Riverside South and Barrhaven, significantly reducing the commute time between the two communities, as well as reducing traffic backlog on other traffic arteries.

The bridge was renamed from the Strandherd-Armstrong Bridge to the Vimy Memorial Bridge in 2014, coinciding with the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the First World War. It honours the historically significant battle of Vimy Ridge and will ensure that the sacrifices made by our Canadian troops during the War are not forgotten.

Gustav Lindenthal (May 21, 1850 to July 31, 1935) was a civil engineer who designed the Hell Gate Bridge across New York City’s East River, which opened in March 1917. At that time, Hell Gate was the longest (977 feet [298 m]) steel arch in the world. Mr. Lindenthal's work was greatly affected by his pursuit of perfection and his love of art. His structures not only serve the purpose they were designed for, but also are esthetically pleasing to the public eye.

May 28, 2015

Zoning By-law Review: Minimum Parking Requirements

The City of Ottawa is currently undertaking a by-law review of the minimum parking requirements for most new development. The review will focus largely on the parking requirements for the inner urban area (generally the former Cities of Ottawa and Vanier), but will also include areas near Transitway, O-Train, and Light Rail Transit stations citywide.

Overall this policy will not have a large impact on Gloucester-Southgate Ward, however this is an important issue facing our growing city and I encourage residents to stay informed and get involved. The discussion paper on the issue can be found by visiting ottawa.ca and includes the history, rationale, and consequences of the current parking minima as well as several arguments for and against changing the current by-law.

Residents can share their comments, questions, and concerns with city staff throughout the summer for review.  The City will also host an open house in the fall for residents to discuss the review in detail. A final report and recommendation on how to amend the current by-law will be presented to Planning Committee in early 2016.

If you have further questions please do not hesitate to contact my office.

May 19, 2015

ByWard and Parkdale outdoor markets open for the season

Ottawa residents can now savour the homegrown flavours on offer in the ByWard and Parkdale markets. These outdoor markets have opened for the season, offering local produce, seasonal plants, flowers, and more.

This year, visitors to the ByWard Market can enjoy food samples and new recipes at the Demo Corner or stop by the Savour Ottawa Farm Stand for an array of locally produced goods like eggs, meat and dairy. Local artisans also sell handmade art and crafts. Established in 1826, this is Ottawa’s oldest public market, conveniently located near major retail shops, local eateries and food retailers. Produce vendors in the ByWard Market will be open daily from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. until November, rain or shine. Arts and crafts vendors operate from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. or later, until Thanksgiving.

The Parkdale Market vendors sell a wide variety of fresh produce and flowers. It’s also home to the Parkdale Fieldhouse, which is the pick-up location for another way to bring home local flavours: Savour Ottawa Online. The market is adjacent to a park where visitors will find community-run events and activities throughout the season, including ArtsPark in May and HarvestFest in September. The market is open every day from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. until November.

This Saturday, visitors can stop by the Master Gardeners’ tables at either market to get free gardening advice from the pros. In the ByWard Market, the Demo Corner will feature asparagus recipes. Other ByWard Market attractions this weekend include stilt walkers, horse-wagon rides and a hot-air balloon on display.

May 14, 2015

Victoria Day schedule changes

The City of Ottawa would like to remind residents of the following schedule changes for Victoria Day (Monday, May 18).

Client services:

  • The City’s Provincial Offences Court, located at 100 Constellation Crescent, will also be closed. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, May 19.
  • The City’s 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters requiring the City’s immediate attention.  Call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. For persons living with a hearing-related disability, call (TTY: 613-580-2401).

Garbage, green bin and recycling collection:

  • There will be no curbside green bin, recyclingor garbage collectionon Victoria Day. Victoria Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, May 19. In addition, the collection of green bin, recycling materials and garbage will be delayed by one day for the week of May 18. For curbside collection enquiries, refer to the collection calendar tool.
  • There will be nomulti-residential collection of bulky items, green bin and recycling container collectionon Victoria Day. Victoria Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, May 19. Recycling container and green bin collection will also be delayed by one day for the week of May 19. However, multi-residential garbage container collectionis not delayed and collection will take place on its regularly scheduled day during the week of May 18.
  • The Trail Waste Facility is closed.

Parking:

  • All City of Ottawa parking regulations and restrictions will apply during this time.

Transit service:

  • OC Transpo service will operate on a Sunday schedule on Victoria Day. Call 613‑560‑1000 or text 560560 plus your four-digit bus stop number for automated schedule information. For more information, holiday schedules and travel planning, phone 613-741-4390, or visit octranspo.com.   
  • The OC Transpo Information Centre (613-741-4390) will be open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • OC Transpo Customer Relations Office (613-842-3600) will be closed.
  • Para Transpo operations:
  • Customer service (613-842-3681) – closed
  • Administration (613-244-1289) – closed
  • Taxi coupons (613-842-3670) – closed
  • Reservations line (613-244-7272) – open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Trip cancellation and general inquiries (613-244-4636) – open 6 a.m.to 12:30 a.m.

Recreation services:

  • Many pools, fitness centres and some arenas will be open on Victoria Day for public swimming, skating and fitness classes with modified schedules. Please check with ottawa.ca or the facility of your choice for details.
  • Many registered programs at swimming pools, community centres and arenas are cancelled on Victoria Day; however, clients should check with their facility to confirm, as some exceptions will apply.

Ottawa Public Health:

  • Site program – Site office at 179 Clarence Street will be closed; however, the site mobile van will be operating on a regular schedule from 5 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.

Cultural Services:

  • City of Ottawa Archives, arts centres, galleries, theatres and museums will be closed. However, clients should check with ottawa.ca or their facility to confirm holiday hours, as some exceptions may apply.
  • Museums will be closed.

Archives Services:

  • The City of Ottawa Archives Reference Services and Gallery 112 will be open on Saturday, May 16 but will be closed Sunday, May 17 to Monday, May 18 for the Victoria Day weekend.

Municipal child care services:

  • City-operated Child Care Centres will be closed.

Ottawa Public Library:

  • All branches and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed. They will operate as usual on Tuesday, May 19.

May 12, 2015

Doors Open Ottawa announces this year’s participating buildings

Residents and visitors alike will soon discover the secrets that lay hidden behind many of the city’s finest buildings during Doors Open Ottawa 2015. The 14th annual event offers the public a chance to explore Ottawa’s built heritage from Carp to Cumberland.

“Doors Open has become one of Ottawa’s premiere events, reinforcing our reputation as a warm and welcoming city,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “The hospitable atmosphere of the Doors Open weekend will leave visitors with a memorable and lasting impression of Ottawa’s rich heritage, and inspire residents with a sense of hometown, community pride.”

Mayor Watson was joined today by Councillor Diane Deans, Chair of the City’s Community and Protective Services Committee, River Ward Councillor Riley Brockington, and representatives of this year’s participating buildings to officially launch Doors Open Ottawa and to announce the complete list of participating buildings.

On June 6 and 7, visitors will have free access to a total of 129 buildings, including 22 new additions to this year’s roster. New additions will include the Rideau Club, which will unlock 150 years of history and tradition, the Canadian Blood Services Processing Plant, the newly renovated Festival House, which houses the RBC Bluesfest, and the Advanced Research Complex at the University of Ottawa.

The complete list of buildings is an eclectic mix of modern and heritage architecture that celebrates the city’s culturally, historically, and functionally significant buildings. Doors Open Ottawa offers something for everyone, from municipal facilities and government buildings to private businesses, artists’ studios and places of worship, to embassies and high commissions of countries across the globe.

“It’s clear from the number of attendees we see year after year that Doors Open Ottawa continues to resonate,” said Councillor Deans. “The City owes an immense thank-you to the generous sponsors, the legions of volunteers and the participating buildings that make this event possible.”

Visitors to the region can join the 75,000 people expected to attend this year’s event, and are encouraged to take advantage of the free OC Transpo shuttle bus sponsored by the Ottawa Citizen. More than 50 downtown buildings involved are easily accessible from the shuttle loop, making it an effective way to explore.

For a full listing of participating buildings and information about the shuttle bus, visit ottawa.ca/doorsopen or pick up a Doors Open Ottawa event guide at any Bridgehead location. Guides will also be distributed through the Ottawa Citizen and LeDroit on May 28, 29 and 30.

 

May 7, 2015

Fire hydrant testing begins

The City of Ottawa will be testing about 10,000 fire hydrants in the south, central and west ends of the City beginning today and ending in October. Hydrants are inspected annually to ensure that they are ready should they be needed by Ottawa Fire Services.

 While hydrants are being tested, neighbouring households may experience temporary inconveniences such as discoloured water and reduced water pressure. The discoloured water, which occurs when the testing process disturbs sediments in the water pipes, does not affect water quality but can stain laundry.

Residents are encouraged to turn off their taps for 10 to 20 minutes and to not do laundry while crews are testing the fire hydrants nearby. When work crews have left the area, turn on a cold water tap for a few minutes until the water runs clear.

The planned work schedule is posted on ottawa.ca. This will be updated regularly as work progresses. Unforeseen circumstances may require changes to the work plan, so residents should check the schedule frequently.

The City thanks residents for their patience and co-operation.

April 30, 2015

Main Street Renewal Project Open house - 11 May 2015

Monday, May 11th, 2015
6 to 9 pm
Room 120
Saint Paul University
Laframboise Hall, Ground Floor
249 Main Street, Ottawa

The City of Ottawa invites you to an Open House for information about a construction project that is scheduled to begin this spring with final completion in 2017.  Design drawings will be on display for your review.  Staff will also be on hand to provide information and receive comments.

Why: The existing street infrastructure has reached the end of its life-cycle, and the City has identified the need for reconstruction.  The recommended design was approved by City Council on July 17, 2013. The City planned this project under Schedule C of the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment (EA) process. The EA process was finalized in September 2013 after the completion of an Environmental Study Report. On this basis, Main Street will be renewed as a “complete street” featuring cycle tracks, wider sidewalks, on-street parking, and space for streetscaping. To accomplish this, vehicle lane reductions will be implemented in some locations. The street design varies along its approximately 2km length. 

What: The construction work will renew infrastructure in your neighbourhood.  Specifically, the works proposed include the introduction, rehabilitation and/or replacement of:

  • Sidewalks, cycling facilities, and transit facilities;
  • Opportunities for street amenities including landscaping and public art;
  • Street lighting and signage;
  • Watermains, sanitary, storm and combined sewers;
  • Lateral services to the property line;
  • Utility reconstruction as required;
  • Traffic control signal system; and
  • Road structure and pavement.

When: This work is planned to begin in Spring 2015 and final completion is anticipated for summer of 2017.

Where: Construction will take place on the following streets:

  • Main Street – Echo Drive to the Rideau River
  • Rideau River Drive – Main Street to 130m south of Main Street

At this time, all interested persons are invited to attend a fourth Public Open House.  The purpose of this Open House is to present the plans for street reconstruction. This includes:

  • The final detailed designs
  • Construction phasing and timing
  • Traffic management plans, including detours
  • Interim transit service
  • Interim pedestrian and cycling routes
  • Stakeholder communications

It is important to note that for sections of Main Street, only southbound traffic will be maintained during construction.  Northbound traffic will be detoured via Riverside Drive, Bank Street and Isabella Street.  Additional information on the traffic management plan and associated detours is available.

City staff and the project consultant will be on hand to discuss the project and respond to questions.

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa.  If you require special accommodation, please contact the undersigned.

For further information or to provide comments, please contact the City’s project manager or the consulting team project manager at the addresses below.

Josée Vallée, P.Eng.
Infrastructure Services Department
Design and Construction Municipal East Branch
City of Ottawa
100 Constellation Crescent, 6th Floor
Ottawa, ON K2G 6J8
josee.vallee@ottawa.ca
Tel.:613-580-2424 x 21805
Fax: 613-560-6064

Ron Clarke, MCIP, RPP
Manager, Planning and Design
Parsons (formerly Delcan)
1223 Michael Street, Suite 100
Ottawa, ON K1J 7T2
ronald.clarke@parsons.com
Tel.:613-738-4160 x 5226
Fax: 613-739-7105

 

April 20, 2015

City seeking public input on six commemorative naming proposals

The City of Ottawa Commemorative Naming Committee is conducting public consultations on six separate naming proposals to:

  • Name a new park at 701 Meadow Ridge Circle “Doug Rivington Park”
  • Name a woodland area on Abbott Street adjacent to Sacred Heart High School the “Kemp Woodland”
  • Name a new park at 130 Woodbine Place “Percy Taverner Park”
  • Rename the Osgoode Multi-Use Pathway the “Doug Thompson Multi-Use Pathway”
  • Name the gazebo in Davidson Park at 5 Ryerson Avenue the “George Watson Gazebo”
  • Rename Black Tern Park at 53 Black Tern Crescent “Brian Parsons Park”

Doug Rivington Park – (Ward 5 – West Carleton-March)

In recognition of Doug Rivington’s extensive community service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to name a new park at 701 Meadow Ridge Circle “Doug Rivington Park”.

Doug Rivington has contributed to the community in many ways including chairman of the school board, president of the Carp Agricultural Society, and warden at St James Church. He has provided gratuitous labour to the Carp splash pad, making the Parish of Huntley Hall wheelchair accessible, and generous monetary support to the Carp Fair, the Huntley Curling Club, the West Carleton Community Complex, Huntley Centennial Public School, the West Carleton Library and local sports teams.

View the online proposal for the “Doug Rivington Park”.

Kemp Woodland – (Ward 6 – Stittsville)

In recognition of the name’s historical significance, the City of Ottawa has been asked to name a woodland area on Abbott Street East adjacent to Sacred Heart High School the “Kemp Woodland”.

Born in 1838 in what is today called Stittsville, John Kemp was the son of William Kemp, one of Goulbourn’s early Irish settlers. John Kemp was a prominent 19th century Stittsville tavern keeper, railway contractor, and Goulbourn Township reeve from 1887 to 1894. He is best known as the builder and owner of the stone mansion Kemp’s Tavern, which now houses Cabotto’s Restaurant on Hazeldean Road.

View the online proposal for the “Kemp Woodland”.

Percy Taverner Park – (Ward 17 – Capital)

In recognition of Percy Taverner’s demonstrated excellence and exceptional service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to name a new park at 130 Woodbine Place “Percy Taverner Park”.

Percy A. Taverner (1875-1947) was a distinguished and internationally honoured biologist, a pillar of the Ottawa naturalist community, and in 1911 became the first ornithologist for the Natural History branch of the National Museum of Canada (now the Canadian Museum of Nature). He was president of the Ottawa Field Naturalists’ Club in the 1930s and was substantially responsible for the survival of this organization and its journal, The Canadian Field-Naturalist, which he founded.

View the online proposal for the “Percy Taverner Park”.

Doug Thompson Multi-Use Pathway – (Ward 20 – Osgoode and Ward 22 – Gloucester-South Nepean)

In recognition of Doug Thompson’s extensive community service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to rename the Osgoode Multi-Use Pathway the “Doug Thompson Multi-Use Pathway”.

Doug Thompson began his political career as a member of Osgoode Township Council in 1984. Subsequently, he became the Mayor of Osgoode Township until amalgamation of the City of Ottawa. Following amalgamation, he was elected to three consecutive terms as City Councillor for Osgoode Ward until his retirement in 2014. Over his 31 years in office, Doug provided assistance to countless residents, community associations, organizations and charities.

Doug Thompson was instrumental in moving the Osgoode Multi-Use Pathway forward and to fruition.

View the online proposal for the “Doug Thompson Multi-Use Pathway”.

George Watson Gazebo – (Ward 22 – Gloucester-South Nepean)

In recognition of George Watson’s excellence, courage and exceptional service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to name the gazebo in Davidson Park at 5 Ryerson Avenue the “George Watson Gazebo”.

George W. Watson (1919-2014) joined the Canadian Army in 1940 at the age of 21, and travelled to Europe for training. Having demonstrated exceptional skill, intelligence and bravery, he was posted to the First Special Services Force. History would eventually refer to this unit as the “Devil’s Brigade”, a joint American-Canadian unit known for getting the tough assignments.

After settling in Ottawa, George became a fixture in the small community of Heart’s Desire. He was also an active member of a local Royal Canadian Legion branch from 1993 to 2006.

View the online proposal for the “George Watson Gazebo”.

Brian Parsons Park – (Ward 23 – Kanata South)

In recognition of Brian Parsons’ excellence, courage and exceptional service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to rename Black Tern Park at 53 Black Tern Crescent the “Brian Parsons Park”.

Brian Parsons has been an active member of the community serving as vice-president of the Bridlewood Community Association from 1997 to 1999. In this capacity, Brian organized the Bridlewood community Canada Day celebrations and the New Year’s Eve community party.

Since being diagnosed with ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig's disease) in 2013, Brian has been tirelessly campaigning to improve the rights and benefits for family members of ALS patients to allow them to take time off work so they can provide round-the-clock care to their loved one during the final stages of life. In addition, Brian has been raising funds for ALS.

View the online proposal for the “Brian Parsons Park”

April 16, 2015

The City of Ottawa is hosting the 12th annual AccessAbility Day

Save the date.

Date: Friday, May 29, 2015 10 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Doors open at 9:30 a.m.
Location: Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West

Ottawa residents of all abilities, older adults, service providers and business owners who share an interest in accessibility are invited to celebrate the City’s 12th annual AccessAbility Day.  Residents are invited to provide input into the City’s new multi-year (2016 - 2020) accessibility plan. Participants can also choose between a variety of activities such as consultations on the accessibility of City parks, cycling and pedestrian facilities and presentations on the City’s Accessibility Design Standards or participate in Accessibility for Ontarian’s with Disabilities Act training.

Please save the date to attend this event.

Stay tuned to Ottawa.ca for more information about the event and how to register.

April 15, 2015

Transit Service adjustments during Confederation Line construction – Transitway closure Hurdman to Blair

Councillor Stephen Blais, Chair of the Transit Commission, and John Manconi, OC Transpo General Manager, delivered a technical briefing today on the transit service adjustments required for the construction of the Confederation Line in the east end of the city. While many transit customers will not be affected by the construction, the City has invested $74 million in mitigation measures to minimize the impacts to those who will see a change to their commute in the east end of the city.

The technical briefing provided details on the transit service adjustments during the construction of the Confederation Line and how these adjustments will affect transit customers’ commutes. Starting this June, the Transitway will be closed between Blair Station and Hurdman Station to allow the construction of the Confederation Line. This section of the Transitway will remain closed until May 2018 when the Confederation Line officially opens for service.

“We thank customers for their patience as we work to deliver this significant city-transforming project,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “These adjustments are necessary so we can continue to build a world-class light rail transit system that will greatly benefit our families, our economy, and our environment for generations to come.”

The mitigation measures include the construction of bus-only lanes on portions of Regional Road 174 and Highway 417, the acquisition of additional buses, the implementation of a new route in the east, and an integrated traffic management response team involving Public Works, Ottawa Police Service and the Ontario Provincial Police.

“These measures will ensure that the level of service matches the expected ridership demand and that there continues to be sufficient capacity on the system for all customers,” said Councillor Stephen Blais, Chair of the Transit Commission. “The aim is to maintain key connection points as well as keep transit routes as close as possible to current routes.”

A comprehensive communication program will be utilized to ensure that all customers are aware of the upcoming changes in a timely manner. Customers are encouraged to look for “Our Transit Future Is On Track” messages starting soon.

 

April 1, 2015

Open House: Complete Streets (May 5)

The City of Ottawa invites you to an Open House to learn more about Complete Streets and the plan for implementation within our city.

Wednesday, May 5
Jean Pigott Place, City Hall
110 Laurier Avenue West
5 to 8 p.m., Presentation at 6:30 p.m.
Transit routes 5, 6, 14 and Transitway Routes

Complete Streets integrate physical elements creating an environment of safety, comfort and mobility for all users of the street regardless of age, ability or mode of transportation. In the November 2013 Transportation Master Plan (TMP) update, recommendations were included to support the development of Complete Streets.

The Implementation Framework will recommend a process for transportation projects: •That ensures a Complete Streets approach
• That is sensitive to the unique aspects of specific areas
•That identifies road users and their various modes of transportation

Accessibility is an important consideration for the City of Ottawa. If you require special accommodation, please call 3-1-1 or e-mail the project lead below before the event.

For further information about this project and/or to submit comments, please contact:

Colin Simpson, MCIP RPP Senior Project Manager Transportation Planning Branch
City of Ottawa
110 Laurier Avenue West Ottawa, Ontario, K1P 1J1
613.580.2424 ext. 27881
E-mail: colin.simpson@ottawa.ca

March 31, 2015

City of Ottawa again among nation’s top diversity employers

For the fourth consecutive year, the City of Ottawa has been recognized as one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers in a national competition that recognizes organizations that do the most to promote diversity and inclusion in the workplace. The winners were announced in a special feature published in today’s Globe and Mail.

“I am proud to see the City recognized for actively supporting and advancing diversity and inclusion and for embracing different views and new perspectives,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “It is important that people feel safe, valued and respected in their workplace and in our City. That commitment is helping us to extend and improve the services we provide to all our residents.”

Now entering its ninth year, the Canada’s Best Diversity Employers competition recognizes the leading organizations when it comes to creating inclusive workplaces for employees from diverse groups.

Employers are selected by the editors at Mediacorp Canada Inc., the nation’s largest publisher of specialty employment periodicals and guides, based on submissions to the annual Canada’s Top 100 Employers competition, now in its 16th year.

In particular, the City of Ottawa was recognized for:

  • Its partnership with Hire Immigrants Ottawa to bring together employers and immigrant-serving agencies.
  • Developing an immigration strategy, which includes the Annual Immigrant Entrepreneurship Awards and the Professional Internship for Newcomers program.
  • Organizing Diversity Cafés where employees can discuss experiences and issues involving diversity.
  • Hosting an annual AccessAbility Day to celebrate accessibility and inclusion.

“Diversity makes organizations more robust, innovative and adaptive,” said City Manager Kent Kirkpatrick. “We are continually looking for ways to improve services, accessibility, and our business practices to better respond to, and reflect, our community’s diversity.”

In the last year, the City of Ottawa has also been named one of Canada’s Top 100 Employers and one of the National Capital Region’s Top Employers.

March 25, 2015

City invites feedback on Confederation Line West Extension

The City of Ottawa invites residents to take part in a public consultation on Monday, March 30 about plans for the Confederation Line West Light Rail Transit (LRT) Extension.

The City and the National Capital Commission (NCC) Working Group recently announced an agreement in principle that would allow a portion of the LRT extension between Dominion and Cleary stations to be fully buried under the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway. The public consultation about the recommended corridor will take place in Jean Pigott Place at City Hall (110 Laurier Avenue West) and will offer residents the opportunity to learn more about the proposal and to provide feedback. The event will run from 5 to 8 p.m., including a presentation at 6:30 p.m.

The preferred integrated transit solution meets the NCC’s criteria while protecting the Byron Linear Park and Rochester Field and meeting the City of Ottawa’s affordability requirements. The solution also:

  • Maximizes greenspace by re-instating existing Parkway lanes of traffic closer together
  • Develops a park of national significance along the shoreline
  • Protects the trees and landscaped buffer between the Parkway and adjacent urban areas
  • Enhances existing pathways and creates new pathways and two new crossings under the Parkway
  • Reduces annual bus trips on the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway by more than 450,000
  • Increases useable shoreline park space by 38 per cent

The Western LRT extension is one of three environmental assessment studies currently underway as part of Stage 2: the City’s plan to add 19 new stations and 30 kilometres to our LRT network, extending it farther east, west and south by 2023.

A further public consultation to review the overall recommended plan for the Stage 2 Confederation Line West Extension is scheduled for Wednesday, April 29. Additional information about upcoming and future public consultation opportunities, project updates and contact information can be found on ottawa.ca/stage2. Materials presented at all public consultations will also be posted on the website for those unable to attend.

March 23, 2015

Seasonal load restrictions start for heavy vehicles serving Ottawa

Beginning at 12:01 a.m. on Monday, March 23, seasonal load restrictions are in effect. Commercial vehicles or trailers with a gross vehicle weight in excess of five tonnes or 11,000 lbs. per axle are prohibited on roads where restriction signage is posted, and on all truck routes identified as restricted on the Truck Route Maps (Urban Truck Routes and Rural Truck Routes).

These restrictions also apply to all non-truck routes. Heavy vehicles that exceed weight limits on restricted load roadways during the spring thaw period will be subject to fines.

During the spring thaw period, some roads cannot withstand heavy vehicle loads. Every year, the City monitors thaw progression by utilizing the forecast temperature data to calculate the Thaw Index. When the Thaw Index reaches its threshold value, the load restrictions are imposed. Once the pavement strength has been restored, the load restrictions are removed.

For further information, please visit ottawa.ca

March 16, 2015

Where parents go to get in the know – Ottawa Public Health launches new online parenting initiative

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) launched a new interactive web portal today to help parents access relevant, reliable and local parenting information online.

The Parenting in Ottawa portal was developed in response to the increasing use of the web to find information, support and community resources. Research shows that a large majority of parents are using online channels to find information and to stay connected with other parents. Parenting in Ottawa is designed to cover everything from planning for a family to getting through the teenage years.

“This newly launched Parenting in Ottawa portal will complement many of the services already offered to Ottawa parents,” said Councillor Shad Qadri, Chair of the Ottawa Board of Health. “Ottawa Public Health is a national leader in providing timely and relevant online health information to residents, and this new tool is a great addition to their toolbox.”

Parenting in Ottawa provides access to credible, evidence-based information in easy-to-navigate formats. Parents and families will learn about local community resources and events and be able to connect virtually with experts from various organizations. Furthermore, parents will also have access to the recently launched and very popular Parenting in Ottawa Facebook page; where parents can interact live with other parents and with a Public Health Nurse weekdays from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“For parents, each stage in a child’s development has new rewards, but also new challenges. We wanted to create an online space that supports all parents, is highly interactive and is easy to use,” said Sherry Nigro, Manager of Health Promotion and Disease Prevention at Ottawa Public Health. “Another of our objectives is to connect people with local community resources.”

“As a first-time mom, I'm always looking for great parenting and health-related advice. The Parenting in Ottawa Facebook page provides a reliable resource to parents in Ottawa,” said Sara Zahiri, active user of the Parenting in Ottawa Facebook page. “It’s nice to have a local resource that parents can depend on to get accurate, current information on parenting issues.”

This web portal will provide access to parenting information on subjects such as:

  • pregnancy
  • breastfeeding
  • the growth and development of your child
  • mental health
  • when to worry, when not to
  • healthy eating
  • immunization
  • how to talk to your child and teen about alcohol, tobacco and other drugs
  • how to talk to your child and teen about puberty and sexuality
  • community services for your family

For more information on pregnancy and parenting, please visit ParentinginOttawa.com or call the OPH Information Line at 613-580-6744. You can also follow OPH on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr.


March 11, 2015

City seeks nominations for 2015 Bruce Timmermans Cycling Awards

The City of Ottawa is inviting residents to submit nominations for the 2015 Bruce Timmermans Awards. The awards recognize individuals and organizations that proactively and publicly promote the benefits and virtues of cycling as a principal mode of transportation.

Nominations are sought in both the individual and organizational categories and must be received by end of day on Friday, March 27.

A long-time cycling educator and advocate, Bruce Timmermans was an active member of the Ottawa Bicycle Club and a founding member of Citizens for Safe Cycling. He worked tirelessly to promote cycling and the City has presented these awards in his honour every year since 1999.

Printable and online forms can be found at ottawa.ca/bta along with details on how to submit nominations.

March 9, 2015

NCC–City Working Group achieves breakthrough agreement for the alignment of the western light rail transit extension

A Working Group comprised of representatives from the National Capital Commission (NCC) and the City of Ottawa has reached an agreement in principle that would allow the City’s western light rail transit (LRT) extension to be fully buried under the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway. This integrated solution meets the NCC’s conditions and the City of Ottawa’s affordability requirements, while advancing the creation of a waterfront linear park.

This innovative solution was achieved following an intensive 100-day review process, led by a working group consisting of three city councillors, four NCC Board members, the City Manager and the NCC’s CEO.

This group began meeting in December 2014, with the goal of finding a mutually satisfactory solution for the western extension of Confederation Line between the Dominion and Cleary stations.

Supported by technical and urban planning expertise, the Working Group developed two viable and fully buried tunnel options: one under the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway, and one passing through Rochester Field and under the Byron Linear Park.

The recommended alignment would see the western LRT fully buried under a reconstructed and realigned Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway. The NCC Board members of the Working Group believe that this buried option meets the two NCC Board of Directors’ conditions: to provide unimpeded continuous access to the corridor lands and shorelines, and to have minimal impact on the landscape quality and experience. It also meets the City’s objectives of protecting the Byron Linear Park, and the existing green corridor through Rochester Field from Richmond Road to the waterfront, while remaining within the project budget envelope.

This solution to run the LRT extension under the realigned westbound and eastbound lanes of the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway between the Dominion and Cleary stations would produce the following results:

  • the existing lanes of traffic would be reinstated closer together and directly above the fully buried rail line in order to create a new “stacked” transportation corridor to maximize the amount of continuous green space through the corridor and along the waterfront;
  • lands and landscaping elements would be restored;
  • a park of national significance would be developed along the shoreline;
  • the mature forest would be retained and enhanced;
  • pathway additions and enhancements would be created, with two new crossings under the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway into the future linear park;
  • an eventual reduction would be achieved of nearly 500,000 bus trips annually on the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway; and
  • a total of 38 percent more usable shoreline parkland would be made available.

As part of the agreement, the Working Group will remain in place to resolve land use issues for the City of Ottawa’s Stage 2 LRT project, and will oversee a joint value-engineering exercise to contain costs within the City’s affordability envelope for this extension.

This agreement will be submitted for approval to the NCC Board of Directors at its next public meeting. The City will provide an opportunity for the public to review the preferred option and provide feedback at an open house event on March 30. This feedback will be considered as part of the ongoing environmental assessment process for the western LRT extension.

“I am pleased with the spirit of cooperation demonstrated by the Working Group,” said Russell Mills, chair of the NCC Board of Directors, “The NCC has continuously supported light rail transit as both a city-building and a nation-building project, and this creative solution reinforces our strong ongoing working relationship with the City of Ottawa.”

“This is a historic agreement that comes as a result of a very constructive dialogue over the past 100 days. I want to thank all of the Working Group members for their hard work and creativity, which has led to the identification of this solution,” said Jim Watson, mayor of Ottawa. “This solution is an important part of the City’s Stage 2 LRT project, which will help us deliver reduced commute times, cleaner air and a stronger economy.”

“Allow me to thank the Working Group for its 100 days of hard work and the report with which it all culminated,” said Royal Galipeau, Member of Parliament for Ottawa-Orleans. “I have only just received the report and look forward to studying its two options and the recommendation. Ottawa has strong advocates in the current federal government. I look forward to reading, studying and analyzing the report and working with all concerned toward the best outcome.”

February 27, 2015

Register now for Older Adult Plan Consultation and Celebration

Mayor Jim Watson will host a consultation event, funded by the Province of Ontario, to help shape the City’s Older Adult Plan 2015-2018 and to celebrate the many accomplishments of the current plan since it was adopted in 2012.

Date:    Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Time:  10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Location: Ottawa City Hall, Jean Pigott Place
110 Laurier Avenue West

Lunch will be provided.

Register for this consultation and celebration at ottawa.ca/olderadults or call 3-1-1.

The Older Adult Plan was adopted in October 2012, reinforcing Ottawa’s commitment to becoming an age-friendly and caring community. Among the accomplishments to be celebrated are:

  • Improved accessibility of buildings and outdoor spaces, including the installation of benches
  • Improved access to supports for vulnerable older adults who have low incomes or are socially isolated
  • Additional tailored programming for older adults in the areas of fitness, computer literary and CPR training 
  • Enhanced communication means, including an older adult portal on ottawa.ca and printed guides of City programs and services for older adults

Feedback acquired at the March 18 event will be used to update the plan and ensure it continues to meet the current and long-term needs of Ottawa’s older adults, including access to essential supports, programs and services.

The updated plan will go to both the Community and Protective Services Committee and Council for approval later in 2015.

January 22, 2015

Airport Parkway and Lester Road Widening Environmental Assessment Open House

The City of Ottawa has initiated the Airport Parkway and Lester Road Widening Environmental Assessment (EA) Study to determine the most appropriate means to accommodate and manage increasing transportation requirements related to growth in the surrounding communities and airport lands as illustrated in the key map. An Open House will be held on Tuesday, January 27, 2015 Jim Durrell Recreation Centre, Ellwood Hall 1265 Walkley Road from 6:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. (presentation at 7:00 p.m.) to provide an overview of the study progress to date. This will include an overview of existing conditions, reconfirming the project need and justification for widening as well as an evaluation of alternative solutions. For more information please visit ottawa.ca or contact my office at diane.deans@ottawa.ca or 613-580-2480.

January 5, 2015

City seeks community torchbearer for Pan American Games Torch Relay

As the countdown to the TORONTO 2015 Pan American/Parapan American Games continues, the City of Ottawa invites residents to nominate a community leader, local celebrity or role model to be a torchbearer for the Ottawa leg of the torch relay that starts in Canada on May 30, 2015.

“The Pan Am torch relay will arrive next summer en route to Toronto, and we want to celebrate a hometown hero with the honour of carrying the Pam Am flame in Ottawa,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “The torch relay is an opportunity to showcase our great city on the international stage, while recognizing a local person who has made a significant contribution to our community.”

“This is an amazing chance for our residents to call attention to the inspiring figures around them,” said Councillor Jody Mitic, Sports Commissioner for the City of Ottawa.

The City has been given the opportunity to pick one community torchbearer and the deadline for submissions is January 18, 2015. The selected torchbearer must be at least 13 years of age and a Canadian citizen or legal resident. Nominations can be submitted on ottawa.ca.

The Pan Am flame will be lit during a traditional ceremony in Teotihuacan, Mexico, before it travels to Canada on May 30, 2015. The torch relay will feature 3,000 torchbearers who will carry the Pan Am flame along its 41-day journey as participants share the Pan Am spirit in more than 130 Canadian communities. The flame will be passed for the last time on July 10, 2015, at the opening ceremony of the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am Games.

The torch relay will incorporate alternative modes of transportation, including plane, train and boat, passing through five major cities outside of Ontario. The remainder of the torch relay legs are all in Ontario communities.

At the TORONTO 2015 Pan Am/Parapan Am Games, 7,600 top athletes from the Americas and the Caribbean will compete at more than 30 venues located in 16 municipalities across southern Ontario.

 

December 19, 2014

Holiday season schedule changes

The City of Ottawa reminds residents of the following schedule changes for Thursday, December 25, Friday, December 26 and Thursday, January 1. 

Recreation Services:

  • Sens Rink of Dreams, located on Marion Dewar Plaza at Ottawa City Hall, is open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., and the heated changing facility is open daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. It will be open throughout the Christmas holidays and will be staffed on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, weather permitting. 

The following holiday schedule will apply:

  • December 24 – closed at 6 p.m.
  • Christmas Day – 1 p.m. to 11 p.m.
  • Boxing Day – noon to 11 p.m.
  • New Year’s Eve – closed at 11 p.m.
  • New Year’s Day – noon to 11 p.m. 
  • Skating Court, located at Lansdowne Park, is open daily from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m., and the heated changing facility is open daily from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. It will be open throughout the Christmas holidays and will be staffed on Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, weather permitting.

The following holiday schedule will apply: 

  • December 24 – closed at 6 p.m.
  • Christmas Day – 1 p.m. to 11 p.m.
  • Boxing Day – noon to 11 p.m.
  • New Year’s Eve – closed at 1 a.m.
  • New Year’s Day – noon to 11 p.m. 
  • Recreation facilities will be operating on modified schedules during the holiday season, including modified swimming, skating and fitness schedules. Most recreation facilities are closed, and public swimming, public skating, aquafitness and fitness classes are cancelled on Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Please check with ottawa.ca or the facility of your choice for details, as some exceptions will apply.
  • Registered programs at swimming pools, community centres and arenas are cancelled during the holiday season; however, clients should check with their facility to confirm, as some exceptions will apply. 

Client services:

  • All rural client service centres will be open on a reduced schedule from December 22 to December 26, and will be closed from December 29 to January 2. On Monday, December 22, the North Gower Client Service Centre will be open from 8:30 a.m. to noon. On Tuesday, December 23, the Metcalfe Client Service Centre will be open from 8:30 a.m. to noon. On Wednesday, December 24, the West Carleton Client Service Centre will be open from 8:30 a.m. to noon. Business will resume as usual on Monday, January 5, 2015.
  • The City’sProvincial Offences Court, located at 100 Constellation Crescent, will also be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Business will resume as usual on Friday, January 2.
  • The City’s 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters requiring the City’s immediate attention. Call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. For persons with a hearing-related disability, call TTY: 613-580-2401. 

Garbage, green bin and recycling:

  • There will be no curbside or multi-residential green bin, recycling, garbage or bulky item collection on Christmas Day. Christmas Day’s pickup will take place on Boxing Day. Collection will be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week. New Year’s Day pick-up will take place on Friday, January 2. Collection will be delayed by one day for the remainder of the week. For curbside collection inquiries, refer to the collection calendar tool.
  • The Trail Waste Facility will be closed on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day.
  • Christmas trees will be collected on your regular scheduled collection day. Please remove all decorations. Christmas trees in plastic bags will not be collected.

Transit service:

  • OC Transpo will operate a reduced schedule December 21 to January 3. On Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, service will operate on a Sunday schedule. On Boxing Day, a Saturday schedule will be in effect. On December 22, 23, 24, 29, 30, 31 and January 2, service will operate on a reduced weekday schedule. Special school services will not operate from December 22 to January 2. Call 613-560-1000 or text 560560 plus your four-digit bus stop number for automated schedule information. For more information, holiday schedules and travel planning, phone 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com. 
  • Again this year, free service will be available on OC Transpo and Para Transpo service after 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve. Customers should check the holiday schedules before heading out, as OC Transpo routes will operate a reduced weekday service on December 31.
  • OC Transpo Sales and Information Centres at Lincoln Fields, St. Laurent and Place d’Orléans stations will be closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, and will close early on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve at 5 p.m.; however, will be open January 3 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Rideau Centre sales office will be closed Christmas Day and New Year’s Day, and will close early on Christmas Eve and New Year’s Eve at 5 p.m., but will be open on Boxing Day from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
  • The OC Transpo Information Centre (613-741-4390) will operate on a reduced hours schedule on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Boxing Day from 8 a.m. until 9 p.m.
  • The OC Transpo Customer Relations Unit (613-842-3600) will be closed Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day, and will operate on a reduced hours schedule from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on December 24 and 31. 
  • Para Transpo operations:
  • Customer Service (613-842-3681) will be closed December 25, 26 and January 1 – open regular hours outside of these times.
  • Administration (613-244-1289) will be closed December 25, 26 and January 1 – open regular hours outside of these times.
  • Taxi Coupons (613-842-3670) will be closed December 25, 26 and January 1 – open regular hours outside of these times.
  • Reservations (613-244-7272) – will be open during regular hours. 

Parking:

  • All City of Ottawa parking regulations and restrictions will apply during this time.

Ottawa Public Health:

  • The latest Food Premises and Personal Service Settings (tattoo and body piercing studios, hairdressing and barbershops, nail salons, electrolysis and various other services) public health inspection reports are available online 24/7.
  • The Sexual Health Centre and Satellite Clinics will be closed on Christmas Eve Day (December 24), Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Year’s Eve Day (December 31) and New Year’s Day. In addition, there are two other satellite clinic closures over the holidays: the Pinecrest-Queensway Community Health Centre will be closed on December 29 and the West End Family Care Clinic will be closed on December 30.
  • The SITE office will be operating on the following schedule:  
  • Wednesday, December 24 – 8:30 a.m. to noon
  • Christmas Day – closed
  • Boxing Day – closed
  • Wednesday, December 31 –  8:30 a.m. to noon
  • New Year’s Day – closed 
  • Wednesday, December 24 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Christmas Day – closed
  • Boxing Day – regular schedule
  • Wednesday, December 31 – 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • New Year’s Day – regular schedule

Cultural services:

  • Karsh-Masson Gallery, Barbara Ann Scott Gallery and OAG (Ottawa Art Gallery) Annex will be open daily as usual throughout the holidays.
  • City of Ottawa Archives, arts centres, galleries, theatres and museums will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day; however, clients should check ottawa.ca or their facility to confirm, as some exceptions may apply. 

Archives Services:

  • The City of Ottawa Archives Reference Services and Gallery 112 will be closed on December 25 through December 27 and on New Year’s Day. The Rideau branch of the Archives will also be closed on December 30. 

Municipal child care services:

  • City-operated Child Care Centres will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. 

Library services:

  • All branches and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed on Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. Branches and services will operate normally from December 27 to 30. On December 24 and 31, all library locations, except for some rural branches, which will be closed, will open at their usual time and close at 3 p.m. Visit the OPL website for complete details.

November 25, 2014

Mayor to host annual Christmas celebration at City Hall

Mayor Jim Watson will host the Mayor’s 14th Annual Christmas Celebration on Saturday, December 6 at Ottawa City Hall in support of the Ottawa Food Bank.

Date: Saturday, December 6
Time:  2 to 6 p.m.
Location: Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West
Admission: a non-perishable food donation to the Ottawa Food Bank

Families are invited to join the fun at this eagerly anticipated event, celebrating Christmas in a wonderful winter setting. Fun-filled outdoor activities will include ice skating on the Sens Rink of Dreams, horse-drawn wagon rides on Marion Dewar Plaza and a mashmallow roast with plenty of hot chocolate.

Indoors, City Hall will be transformed into a wonderland. Kids will be excited to meet Santa and Mrs. Claus and make a craft in Santa’s Workshop. Face painting and live performances will be part of the fun as families enjoy special treats from BeaverTails and Lindt.

The Mayor’s Annual Christmas Celebration is made possible by the generosity of the many corporate sponsors. In the spirit of giving and to help those in need, admission to this sponsored event is a non-perishable food donation to the Ottawa Food Bank.

OC Transpo will offer free bus rides on all routes to and from City Hall from 1:30 to 6:30 p.m. to children 11 years and under when accompanied by a fare-paying adult.

For more information, visit ottawa.ca.

November 25, 2014

Winter overnight parking restrictions will be in effect from November 15 until April 1

The City of Ottawa is reminding residents that winter overnight parking restrictions are in effect beginning Saturday, November 15. These restrictions ensure that the City’s snow-clearing crews are able to keep Ottawa’s roads safe and clear for pedestrians, cyclists, public transit, and motorists.

Between November 15 and April 1, when 7 cm or more of snowfall is forecast by Environment Canada, overnight parking restrictions go into effect. These restrictions are automatically enacted, unless the City of Ottawa’s General Manager of Public Works issues an exemption. The City of Ottawa will announce parking restrictions and inform residents if there is an exemption through ottawa.ca and the City’s Twitter account @ottawacity.

When restrictions are put into place, parking will not be permitted on Ottawa streets between 1 and 7 a.m.

Vehicles parked on the street when a restriction is in effect will be ticketed. Vehicle owners who have a municipal on-street parking permit are exempt from winter overnight parking restrictions.

Be in the know about snow
Sign up to receive e-mail or Twitter notifications of overnight parking restrictions at ottawa.ca. After you sign up, you will receive an e-mail or Twitter alert via @ottawacity, every time a winter overnight parking restriction goes into effect or is lifted. The service is free and you can unsubscribe at anytime.

You can also find out if an overnight parking restriction is in effect by calling 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401) or through local media.

When day-time or night-time snow removal operations are planned, temporary "no parking" snow removal signs will be posted before snow removal begins. Vehicle owners are reminded not to park on streets where temporary "no parking" snow removal signs are placed. Vehicles parked during planned snow removal will be ticketed and towed to a nearby street. This restriction applies to all vehicles, including those with on-street parking permits.

Your safety is the City of Ottawa’s top priority. For more information on winter overnight parking regulations, visit ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-2401).

 

 

 

 

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