Annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention Meeting

I welcome you to join me at my Annual Community Safety and Crime Prevention meeting on:

Date: Thursday, May 13, 2010
Time: Visit Displays – 6:30 to 7:00 p.m.
Presentations and Q&A – 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.
Location: Carleton Heights Community Centre
1665 Apeldoorn Avenue

You will have the opportunity to address community safety and crime prevention issues that are important to you and to learn more about services available to you.

Central Park Spring Cleaning the Capital

I extend my sincere gratitude to the Central Park Community Association and the residents of Central Park who participated in the Spring Cleaning the Capital Event on April 24, 2010. Everyone did a wonderful job by working together to keep Central Park clean, green, litter and graffiti free. Congratulations and thank you!

New Splash Pad Water Park for Celebration Park

On April 24, 2010, at the Central Park Spring Cleaning the Capital event, I had the pleasure of announcing the installation of a $100K Splash Pad Water Park in Celebration Park. Before the end of June, I will host a community meeting to receive your feedback regarding colour and elements to be included in the splash pad. City staff anticipate that construction will begin in late-August or early-September, aiming for a 2011 opening.

New Concrete Sidewalk on Merivale Road

As you may have noticed, the installation of a new concrete sidewalk on the east side of Merivale Road, from Baseline Road to Caldwell Avenue, began on May 3, 2010. Construction will be complete by the end of this week, weather permitting. This new sidewalk will create a safe environment for pedestrians wishing to travel south to Baseline Road and beyond, or north to Caldwell Avenue and beyond.

OC Transpo Rack and Roll

On April 18, 2010, OC Transpo introduced the return of Rack & Roll service for cyclists.

Bike racks will be installed on more than 350 buses, so cyclists can ride the bus and take their bike with them. Nine routes – 12, 85, 95, 96, 97, 99, 101, 106 and 118 – are designated Rack & Roll routes, which have bike racks on most trips.

Integrated Road Safety Program (IRSP)

May Initiative
Speeding and running or rolling through stop signs is the focus of this month’s Selective Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP). STEP is a monthly initiative operated by the City of Ottawa’s Integrated Road Safety Program (IRSP).

In 2008, 1,671 reportable collisions occurred at Ottawa’s stop sign-controlled intersections. These collisions resulted in one death and 456 injuries – 17 of them life-threatening.

Speeding is also a serious issue on Ottawa roads. In 2008, exceeding the speed limit or travelling too fast for road and weather conditions resulted in 3,592 reportable collisions – resulting in nine deaths and 990 injuries (55 of those were serious).

Fire Hydrant Testing

This summer, the City of Ottawa will be testing fire hydrants to ensure they are working properly. The fire hydrant testing initiative is an ongoing program that is performed each summer. It takes two years to complete testing of every one of Ottawa’s 18,299 fire hydrants. Between May and September, fire hydrants will be tested in the central/east and the south/west areas of the City. Flushing water through the hydrants at a very high flow rate checks their operation and flow capacity.

Due to weather and some hydrants that may need repair, it isn’t possible to predict the exact day a crew will be in your neighbourhood. However, a flyer will be delivered to your home to advise you that testing will be done on your street in the near future. The City’s water information line at 613-560-6089 will be updated daily with the streets that will be tested on that day.

Although fire hydrant testing is a routine maintenance procedure, it may temporarily inconvenience residents in nearby homes. Discharging water at a high flow rate during testing disturbs sediments in the water distribution system. As a result, during and immediately after testing, brown or rust-coloured water may temporarily flow out of your taps. It is important to remember that discoloured water is not harmful to your health, however, since it can stain clothing and linens, it’s best to purge it out of your water system.

Hydrant testing can also reduce regular water pressure. Reduced water pressure should only be intermittent while the hydrants are being tested. Your water pressure will return to normal when the testing is complete.

While hydrants are being flushed on your street, it’s advisable to turn off your taps for about 20 minutes and not do laundry or run the dishwasher. When work crews have left the area, turn on one of your cold-water taps for a few minutes to flush out the pipes until the water runs clear.

Firefighter Summer Camp for Girls

Camp Female Firefighters in Training (FITT) is a weeklong day camp for young women between the ages of 15 and 19 that runs August 16 to 20, 2010. It is operated in partnership with Ottawa Fire Services and Fire Service Women of Ontario – a non-profit association of career and volunteer women from across Ontario.

Qualified members of Ottawa Fire Services will teach the young women basic firefighting training as well as team building, basic pump and ladder operations, auto extrication and how to use a self-contained breathing apparatus.

The cost of the camp is $150. Participants will require steel-toe boots and an OHIP or another provincial health insurance card. Applications are available on-line to be downloaded, completed and mailed to the return address that is provided on the form.

Camp FITT provides young women an opportunity to experience first-hand what it takes to be firefighter – including physical fitness, being a team-player and possessing a strong work ethic. And more importantly, it provides them the self-confidence to explore a career in one of the most reputable public service professions in the world – firefighting.

For more information on Camp FITT, feel free to visit

Pedestrian Safety Evaluation Program

On March 30, 2010, as Chair of the City of Ottawa’s Transportation Committee, I hosted a press conference regarding the City’s Pedestrian Safety Evaluation Program. I joined my Council colleague, Councillor Christine Leadman and City staff at the intersection of Carling Avenue and Holland Avenue.

As part of the development phase of this new pilot, I had the wonderful opportunity to work with residents to identify this intersection as being one with a number of pedestrian safety concerns. I am pleased to note that this intersection will receive a number of upgrades this year to improve the level of safety for pedestrians.

The Pedestrian Safety Evaluation Program is a three-year pilot project aimed at minimizing the frequency and severity of preventable collisions involving pedestrians. It was approved by City Council on April 28, 2010 and will review approximately 23 intersections for pedestrian safety in the next three years.

Community engagement will be a key component in all phases of the program as City staff assess safety issues and risks at identified intersections. Donald Street and the Vanier Parkway; and Carling Avenue and Holland Avenue will be the first intersections reviewed. Funds are already allocated within the Safety Improvement Program Capital Budget.

Half-price Parking for Motorcycles and Scooters

Motorcycle and scooter enthusiasts can once again park for half of the regular parking price at:

  • Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West (enter from Laurier Avenue or from Elgin Street at Nepean Street)
  • 70 Clarence Street in the ByWard Market.

The motorcycle and scooter parking area in the ByWard Market, which officially opened last year, has a separate entrance with a Pay and Display machine and 31 motorcycle/scooter-sized parking spaces. Spaces at the City Hall parking garage are not configured specifically for motorcycles and scooters, however visitors to City Hall, or those accessing the many restaurants and attractions nearby, can take advantage of the half price fee.

The convenient half-priced parking is intended to encourage use of smaller, fuel-efficient forms of transportation.