This long-term plan speaks to Council's four transit priorities, as outlined in the November 21, 2007 motion that I tabled at the joint Transportation and Transit Committee, of building a downtown transit tunnel, completing the Transitway, implementing rapid transit using the Cumberland Transitway alignment and implementing light rail transit to the southeastern growth area.
In a public consultation launched in Fall 2007, residents were asked to provide their input on transportation issues through a variety of mediums. Participants expressed a number of priorities including a transit system that is more efficient, convenient, reliable and comfortable. A strong interest was also expressed in the use of a downtown tunnel to reduce congestion.
In an effort to ensure residents have the opportunity to be involved in this process, the City will be accepting comments on the four options through a variety of venues, including public open houses and online at ottawa.ca.
I encourage you to attend one of the following meetings to review the draft rapid transit network, and provide your feedback.
Tuesday, March 4 CENTRAL City Hall, Jean Pigott Rotunda, 110 Laurier Avenue West Open House: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Registered Discussion Group: 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 5 WEST Earl March High School, Cafeteria, 4 The Parkway, Kanata Open House: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Registered Discussion Group: 7 p.m. Thursday, March 6 SOUTH John McCrae High School, Cafeteria, 103 Malvern Drive, Barrhaven Open House: 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Registered Discussion Group: 7 p.m.If you are interested in attending one of these meeting, please call my office to receive more information on how to register for one of these meetings. Feedback generated form these meeting and online commentaries will be included in an April 16 report where staff will table the recommended transit network and the approach for phasing of the projects to a joint meeting of the Transit and Transportation Committee. Another round of consultations will then take place on this recommendation. The final report will be discussed at the May 21 joint meeting of the Transit and Transportation Committee, and will rise to Council on May 28 for a final decision.
February Initiative: The City of Ottawa's Integrated Road Safety Program (IRSP) took aggressive driving to heart this February by focussing on drivers who change lanes unsafely and speed as part of its monthly Selective Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP).
In 2006, 843 reportable collisions occurred on Ottawa roads due to drivers changing lanes unsafely. These collisions resulted in two deaths and 119 injuries - seven of them serious.
Speeding is also a serious issue on Ottawa roads. In 2006, 2,882 reportable collisions occurred on Ottawa roads as a result of drivers exceeding the speed limit or driving too fast for conditions. These collisions resulted in 13 deaths and 901 injuries - 66 of them life-threatening.
I will provide you with the results of this initiative at your next Board meeting.
I am pleased to inform you that the City of Ottawa launched Phase II of the online consultation in support of "Design Lansdowne" on February 26, 2008. This second round of consultation deals with the Guiding Principles for Design. The suggested Principles will be posted for comment from February 26l to March 9l .
Green Partnership Program grants are available to local community associations, service clubs, non-profit groups, local Business Improvement Areas and community groups to improve and beautify their communities and environment through greening and cleaning projects.
Two funding levels are available. For projects on City-owned property, applicants may receive up to $20,000. For publicly-owned and accessible property, up to $10,000 is available. Funding must be matched by the applicant in either financial or in-kind contributions. Major Hallmark projects that take a highly innovative approach to cleaning and greening city property may be eligible for increased funding.
The funding application deadline is April 15, 2008. Applications are reviewed as received with funding awarded on an ongoing basis. Approved projects must be completed by December 31,2008. Green Partnership Program application forms are available at ottawa.ca/green and at all City Client Service Centres. For more information on the Green Partnership Program, please contact my office at 613-580-2486.
Community Funding is available for projects that promote:
Crime Prevention Ottawa Funding is available for projects that:
Program guidelines and applications for 2008 Community Project Funding and Crime Prevention Ottawa Project Funding are available at municipal Client Service Centres and online at Ottawa, ca/funding. Applications must be postmarked or received by 4 p.m. Friday, March 14,2008.
Volunteers have a direct impact on many aspects of our day-to-day life, including health, heritage, education, social services, arts and culture, sports and recreation, literacy services and the environment. Let me know about that special person in your community whose volunteer efforts should be recognized. You can also submit the nomination form online at ottawa.ca/volunteering, or you can pick up a brochure at one of the Client Service Centres, Ottawa Public Library branches or community centres. The deadline for nominations is Friday, March 28 2008. For more information, please feel free to contact my office at 613-580-2486.
Council voted to move forward with an increase to on-street parking rates city-wide to $3 per hour from current $2.50 per hour on March 1, 2008, which is consistent with an inflationary increase from the most recent fee increase in 2004. In addition, Council decided to delay a decision on the implementation of paid parking in Hintonburg until the completion of the community's Neighbourhood Planning Initiative.
City staff will also develop for public and Council consideration a new city-wide, comprehensive, consolidated parking charges policy. The terms of reference for this review will be presented to Transportation Committee in Spring 2008.
Corporate Knights, an independent Canadian-based media company focussed on promoting and reinforcing sustainable development in Canada, examined 18 cities, including Canada's top ten cities by population and the largest city in each province and territory. This year's ranking added more indicators that are under municipal jurisdiction, and grouped the cities into three categories based on population to ensure proper comparison.
Cities were assessed based on five broad categories: Ecological Integrity, Green Mobility, Economic Security, Empowerment, and Social Well-Being. Publicly available information, including Statistics Canada data, as well as city surveys was used to determine city scores.
The corporation of the City of Ottawa topped the large city category with a score of 7.70 out often. Ottawa has the highest score in the Empowerment category, due mostly to the highest municipal voter turnout in the last election of any city, and in the Green Mobility category. Ottawa boasts the lowest violent crime rate of all cities and its citizens are healthy, with only one in five people being obese. Exceeding its greenhouse gas emission reduction target of 20 per cent below 1990 levels by 2007, by achieving a 24 per cent reduction in 2004, also bolstered Ottawa's score.
The full results of the ranking are available on www.corporateknights.ca.