March 7, 2005
- Fred MacLennan, President
- Peter Brimacombe, Secretary
- Gisèle Loiselle-Branch, Director
- Shelley Parlow, Director
- Patrick Richter (Southern Corridor and website) Director (memberships)
- Erwin Dreessen
- Sarah McCormack
- Bill Royds, Greenspace Alliance
- Maria McRae, City councillor
- Pat Murphy, City councillor’s office
- Christen Harold, The News
City Councillor Maria McRae submitted a written report.
Erwin Dreessen and Bill Royds presented “Saving the Southern Corridor through Poetry”. The proposal is that the Southern Corridor should be preserved as a way to commemorate the Confederation Poets who were centered in the capital. This proposal is made by the Greenspace Alliance: http://www.flora.org/greenspace/poetspath-1/index.shtml. The National Capital Commission (NCC) owns the Southern Corridor. The NCC contests the designation of major portions of the Southern Corridor as Major Open Space in the City’s Official Plan. Instead the NCC wants them designated as General Urban Area which would allow them to be developed. Included in the proposal was a groundworks design for a commemorative plaque surrounded by a grove located next the the Hunt Club/Riverside Community Centre.
Patrick Richter: What would be the costs of the Poets’ Pathway?
Erwin Dreessen: The NCC would forego the sale of the property for development.
Sarah McCormack: Would adoption of this proposal save the Southern Corridor from development?
Erwin Dreessen: Yes. The Poets’ Pathway would go from Britannia in the west to the Beechwood Cemetery in the east but there are obstacles to a continuous pathway.
Peter Brimacombe: The City proposes to build 48,000 housing units in Leitrim/South Ottawa over the next 20 years to provide for a growing population. The 48,000 housing units will require an infrastructure that is too expensive to build, will require energy too expensive to maintain, will make development of an efficient public transit system impossible and will encroach on agricultural land. The documentary “The End of Suburbia” makes the point that “peak oil” is inevitable. The 48,000 units are not only inefficient, they threaten our survival. See http://www.endofsuburbia.com/catalog.htm. The documentary will be shown on Wednesday night at 22:00 on Vision TV. The alternative is to develop within the City. The Southern Corridor would be one such development.
There was a general discussion about Erwin Dreessen and Bill Royds’ presentation. Comments were positive.
- Agrees that we should preserve the Southern Corridor but that our best strategy is to work with the NCC to find a permanent solution.
- Thanked Erwin Dreessen and Bill Royds for their presentation and noted that Bill Royds also worked on the Sawmill Creek constructed wetlands.
- The proposed east-west extension of Light Rail will cut across a corner of the Southern Corridor.: http://www.city.ottawa.on.ca/public_consult/lrt/ew/index_en.shtml
- There will be public meetings about expansion of Light Rail, March 21, 22 and 23: http://www.city.ottawa.on.ca/public_consult/lrt/ns/stage_3/index_en.shtml
- Cost of expansion of Light Rail in Ottawa will be shared equally by federal, provincial and municipal governments – each will pay one third of $724 million.
- There will be a new bridge over the Rideau River just north of Manotick, it should include lanes for cars as well as tracks for trains.
- There will be a rail station at Walkley Road, it should be a multi-functional structure that would provide for shops and businesses.
- We have to build light rail to provide relief to the transportation crisis that we have right now.
Gisèle Loiselle-Branch: Many of the roads in our community have developed pot-holes over the course of the winter.
Maria McRae: There will be a big program to resurface the roads in the spring, including Uplands Drive, McCarthy Road, and Plante Drive. She voted in favour of the City budget including the plan to hire 20 new paramedics. She continues to look for ways to run the City more efficiently. For example the Hunt Club/Riverside Community Centre is run on a fee-for-service basis, this should be the model for other community centres. The City will be celebrating its 150-year anniversary this year: http://www.city.ottawa.on.ca/residents/ottawa_150/index_en.shtml. As part of this celebration the Hunt Club Community Organization will be given a tree. We have to decide where to plant it by April 8. Also we are asked to contribute half a page to a scrap book that will be put in a time capsule. Once again this year, the City will host the Tulip Festival: http://www.tulipfestival.ca/
Patrick Richter is impressed with the improvements to the OC Transpo Routes, especially Route 87.
Fred McLennan: What conditions will be required to change the zoning near Hunt Club Place?
There was a general discussion regarding the application for rezoning, the property lots and the small stream in the area. Maria McRae said that she would actively follow developments.
Next meeting: Mon 4 Apr 2005 at 7:30pm