Report to River Ward Community Associations

Councillor Wendy Stewart  580-2486

January 2001



1. Development Proposal Imminent for Moffatt Farm

            It has come to my attention that a deal has been signed that will propose development of greenspace in Carleton Heights known as The Moffatt Farm. Located off Prince of Wales Drive across from Carleton Heights School, the site is presently owned by the NCC. While the deal has yet to earn Treasury Board approval, an NCC official says a portion of the land will almost certainly be handed over to DCR Phoenix, a local development company.

            As the previous city ward councillor, Jim Bickford, had reported to you, the Moffatt Farm site is being considered as an exchange for preserving the environmentally sensitive area of Montfort Woods.  Should the deal go through, any change to current land uses will be subject to a full municipal rezoning and site plan application process.

            While I strongly support the preservation of environmentally sensitive greenspace like the Montfort Woods, the question of exchanging it for greenspace in our community needs to be approached with caution. The Moffatt Farm site has its own unique characteristics, a tradition of public use for passive recreation and dogwalking, not to mention a waterfront location on Mooney’s Bay that also needs special environmental consideration. 

As well, we must consider what form of rezoning could be appropriate for this site. Given the former regional mandate to infill within the Greenbelt, it is unreasonable to think that sites like Moffatt Farm should not ever be considered for new homes. But how many homes would be appropriate? And what other amenities like parks and open areas would be required by the community? What kind of traffic impact would there be? These issues will all be looked at during an extensive public consultation process.

School enrollment is another issue. Carleton Heights School has suffered from under-enrollment in recent years. More homes, and therefore more families with children, may be enough to keep this school from any future closing lists. 

Finally, I would like to be clear that no official proposal has been submitted to the city. We do not know any firm details about what this development could look like, or the possible impact it could have on the community. If and when the applications are received, an extensive notification and consultation process with the community will get underway.

I will continue to monitor the situation and keep you apprised of any new information.




2.  Smoking Policy in New City

     One of the first major issues that the new City Council will consider is the No-Smoking in Public Places and Workplaces By-law.   In 2000, No-Smoking Bylaws were passed in Nepean, Kanata, Ottawa, Gloucester and Rideau Township, to take effect in May of 2001.  It is crucial that these by-laws be harmonized as soon as possible throughout the new City of Ottawa to create a level playing field for businesses, prevent enforcement problems, and protect the health of each and every citizen.

     The Medical Officer of Health has recommended the City implement a no smoking by-law that prevents smoking in all public places and work places with no allowances for designated smoking rooms.  This would include restaurants, bars, billiard halls, bowling alleys, bingo halls and casinos.  We are advised that allowing designated smoking rooms is unfair to small businesses that cannot afford them.  We are also told that smoking rooms provide inadequate ventilation and do not protect workers, guests of smokers, or children who are brought inside by parents.

     Second-hand smoke is the most common and harmful form of indoor air pollution, containing tar, nicotine and other cancer-causing chemicals.  Nicotine can be found in the blood of non-smokers from 2 to 40 hours after exposure to second-hand smoke. 

     Nine public consultation sessions have been arranged in January to allow adequate time for people to address questions prior to the matter appearing before Council.  These sessions are intended to inform and educate citizens and to ensure a fair process.  Closest locations to River Ward residents are sessions on Monday, January 22nd  in Haydon Hall at City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West (old Regional Headquarters), and on Thursday, February 8th in The Chamber, Nepean Client Service Centre, 101 Centrepointe Drive.  Public consultations will be held from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.  In addition, if interest warrants, an information  session will be scheduled in River Ward.

     If you would like to receive a copy of the staff report (when available) please contact my office.


3.  Intersection Safety Review - Baseline at Merivale – Update

            Synectics Transportation Consultants has released the final safety audit report for the Baseline and Merivale intersection.  You may recall that this project was undertaken as a result of State Farm Insurance’s identification of this intersection being in the top five for claims against it in Ontario.

            Staff at the City have initiated the implementation of the short term recommendations in the report where possible, and will address the remaining items in the spring when appropriate weather conditions prevail.  Long term recommendations are being reviewed and assessed by operations and engineering for cost, geometric and land implications.


4.  Quality of Life Indicators - New City of Ottawa Baseline Report

            The first report on sustainability undertaken for the new City of Ottawa, prepared by Jacques Whitford Environment Limited is now available.  It presents information on the existing conditions and quality of life in the City and is intended to provide a baseline of data for the purpose of reporting on the City’s sustainability over time. 

            Indicators of sustainability are selected quantitative or qualitative measures that allow us to gain better insight into the community’s health and quality of life.  The  report includes biophysical, social and economic indicators supported by relevant facts, quantifiable data, geographically-based statistics, charts, graphs and/or important observations as they pertain to the new City of Ottawa.

By periodically re-evaluating and comparing this data, the City will demonstrate ongoing commitment to maintaining sustainability and improving our quality of life, and to reporting on our progress towards this goal.

Please let me know if you would like a copy of this document.


OC Transpo – Ridership Climb Continues

            In November 2000, ridership was up 6.5% over November 1999, with revenues 0.7% ($59,000) over budget.  Year to date revenues are $1.8 million above budget.


New Ottawa Public Library

            Eleven local library systems have merged to become the fourth largest public library system in Canada, with 33 branches and a bookmobile serving 750,000 people in  a geographic area spanning 2,700 square kilometres.  For now, residents can continue business as usual at their local branches with the added bonus of being able to return and borrow materials at any location.  A system-wide library card, standardized hours, an integrated database and harmonized policies are all being worked on.

            Barbara Clubb, former head of the old Ottawa library has been appointed City Librarian by the Ottawa Transition Board. 

For more information visit the web site at:    


Development and Proposals Underway in River Ward (January 2001)


1.      Medical Centre/Hyperbaric Chamber: Bank and Vancouver: current status - A site plan has been submitted to the City of Ottawa that meets the zoning requirements.  Approval rests with Councillor Stewart, who will continue to work with the community on this issue. 


2.      Central Park/Ashcroft/Clyde Avenue Holdings: 1241 Clyde Ave. (former DOC lands); current status - The plan was appealed to the OMB and a hearing date is yet to be scheduled.


3.      Heron/Walkley lands (adjacent to Albion Road):  These lands were tendered by the NCC (4 parcels) in Dec. ’99 and a signed agreement was reported with Claridge Homes for the purchase of four parcels. Two parcels, located approximately from Walkley Road in the north, to south of Kitchener Avenue, are scheduled to close on or before Feb. 2001. The other two are scheduled to close next year.


4.      1172 Walkley Road:  An application was received  by the City to permit an office or residential development on this vacant site located along the south side of Walkley Road and west of Bank Street. Staff have prepared a draft report and indicated they plan to recommend proceeding with the rezoning. A public meeting is expected to be scheduled in the near future.   Committee consideration in February.


5.      Moffatt Farm: (see page 1 of this report)


6.      3596 Old Riverside Drive - Urbandale Development:  located on the west side of Old Riverside and Nelligan Lane; current status - Following Committee of Adjustment approval to increase the height of one building from 12 stories to 18, the developer and the community reached an agreement that addresses some building concerns. The agreement also deals with increased leisure funding, tree preservation and the possible opportunity for access to more community space, among other things. This was obviously a cooperative effort that should minimize problems and lead to community improvements.


7.      McCarthy/Cahill West Development - former Ottawa-Carleton District School Board vacant site in the northwest corner of McCarthy Road and Cahill Drive West; current status - Minto Developments Inc. purchased this property has applied to rezone the area to allow 155 single family homes and 18 townhomes. A circulation to inform residents about the proposal will commence as soon as application is deemed complete by city staff.  Public consultation is integral to changing land use designations.  Public meeting tentatively scheduled for late January.


8.      1132 Merivale Road  - vacant lot at the corner of Merivale and Mayview Avenue; current status - Centretown Citizens Ottawa Corporation have negotiated an Agreement of Purchase and Sale and have submitted a site plan proposal for this property. They are looking to build 13 two, three and four-bedroom townhouses and stacked townhouse rental units. This property is currently zoned R5A which permits apartment and townhouse buildings. No re-zoning is required.


Committee of Adjustment Hearings

1.  Carlington Heights Ltd. is applying to convert portions of two apartment buildings at 1435 and 1455 Morisset Ave. to add five new units. This would increase the number of units to 102.


2.  257 Marilyn Ave. (corner Riverside) Two abutting landowners are applying to each convey a portion of their land to form a new parcel of land and build a new house.


3.  Dorothea Drive. There are two applications pending for this residential street (96 and 157 Dorothea Dr.) where landowners want to demolish existing homes, divide their property into two lots, and build two new homes on the new lots.  New lots meet minimum requirements for current zoning but result in intensification of community.


Committee of Adjustment hearings for all of these issues are scheduled to take place January 18 starting at 2:30 p.m. at the former City Hall, 111 Sussex Dr., in the Bytown Pavilion, Freiman-Guigues Room.