Capital Ward Bulletin: Remembering Diane Deans, Rain Ready Ottawa and special events coming to Capital Ward

Remembering Diane Deans

This week, our city lost a passionate civic leader and tireless community champion. Diane Deans served the communities of Gloucester-Southgate as city councillor for 28 years. Throughout that time, she was committed to improving the city and challenging the status quo at City Hall. Her dedication and perseverance were of tremendous benefit to our city.

Personally, Diane served as a mentor, guide, collaborator and friend throughout my time as councillor. She was always willing to offer assistance, and to share her wisdom and expertise. I will always cherish the time I was able to spend with her, both during her time as council and after.

My thoughts are with her family, her friends and all who hold her in their heart.

Great Glebe Garage Sale

It’s almost garage sale time! On Saturday May 25 from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm, the Glebe will transform into the city’s biggest open-air market. Come on out to the Glebe, find some deals, have some fun and just make a day of it.

And if you are coming to the Glebe next Saturday, please remember there will be lots people on the street and driving will be slow, so please be careful…and if you can bus, bike or walk, all the better.

Special Events at Lansdowne Park

As the weather warms up, we’re seeing more and more activity at Lansdowne Park.

This Saturday, you can check out 613flea in the Aberdeen Pavilion for the first of 13 markets running throughout the spring, summer and fall. You can learn more and find upcoming dates at 613flea.ca.

Lansdowne Farmers’ Market has returned for another season. They’ll be out there in Aberdeen Square every Sunday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm until October 27.

Next weekend, Ottawa Race Weekend Health and Fitness Expo will be at the park on Saturday and Sunday.

You can check the city’s website for a list of events coming to Lansdowne.

Football is back

The Ottawa RedBlacks are just about ready to kick off the 2024 season. Their first pre-season is on Friday May 31 at 7:00 pm and then their home opener is Thursday June 13 at 7:30 pm. You can check out their full schedule online.

As always, the city encourages people to take transit, walk or bike to the game, if possible. If you are driving into the neighbourhood on game night, please be aware of special event parking restrictions along Bank Street and throughout the area.

Follow-up meeting on the Deschâtelets Community Centre project

At the beginning of May, our office met with representatives from the Conseil des écoles catholiques du Centre-Est (Center East Catholic School Council or CECCE), Parks staff from the city, Ottawa Community Housing and members of Old Ottawa East Community Association to review the status of the Deschâtelets Community Centre project. There has not been much news on this project since 2022 when the CECCE bought the building and council approved moving ahead with a lease for the community center and gym, with affordable housing for seniors on the upper two floors. The CECCE is currently waiting on money from the province to open the school, which will enable renovations which will take from 12 to 14 months. After that, the city will begin the design and construction of the Forecourt Park.  

Site Alteration Bylaw Review

The city is currently reviewing the Site Alteration Bylaw, which regulates grading and drainage matters within the city. This bylaw essentially prohibits residents from doing work on someone else’s property without their permission, or from altering the drainage on surrounding properties. It also protects agriculture resources and natural heritage features. The proposed changes to the bylaw are outlined on the schedule B map, and they effectively reduce protected areas around the urban boundary. The city is collecting input on the revised bylaw through a survey that is open through May 24. You can also send your feedback and questions directly to [email protected].

Rain Ready Ottawa made permanent with expanded boundaries

On May 1, city council approved a permanent, expanded Rain Ready Ottawa program to help residents manage rainfall on their properties, reduce the harmful impacts of stormwater runoff on small open watercourses and improve the health of Ottawa’s waterways. 

The program offers rebates and educational opportunities in priority areas for retrofits that redirect rain and make properties more absorbent, such as rain gardens and permeable driveways. The expanded area eligible for rebates includes portions of Heron Park, while some parts of the Glebe are eligible for e-learning courses as part of the secondary stormwater retrofit area. Rain Ready Ottawa programs are targeted to areas that were built before adequate stormwater management measures were common.

You can check your eligibility for rebates or educational courses by entering your address into the eligibility map available on the Rain Ready Ottawa webpage, or reviewing the attached map. Priority stormwater retrofit areas are eligible for a custom home assessment to help manage rainwater, and/or rebates up to $5,000 to help you reduce run-off and self-guided eLearning courses. Secondary stormwater retrofit areas are eligible for the self-guided eLearning courses only. 

Rain Ready Ottawa will help the city meet its 50-year targets for stormwater retrofits on residential private properties and adapt to climate change. It is part of a suite of city programs that will help homeowners take action to make their properties more resilient to rainfall. Visit ottawa.ca/rain for more details.

Your Capital Ward

Photo by Mariah LaRose 

If you have a photo you’d like to share in an upcoming bulletin, please send it to [email protected], with the subject line Your Capital Ward. Please give us your name for attribution…or tell us if you’d rather not have your name shared.

Tree Giveaway!

Please join Ecology Ottawa at the Great Glebe Garage Sale on May 25 to receive a free native seedling! This tree giveaway is an opportunity for Ottawans to plant a native seedling on their property and help strengthen Ottawa’s tree canopy. Ecology Ottawa will be distributing five species of seedlings, along with planting and care instructions. More information—including RSVP—is on their website. For those interested in a seedling but unable to participate this time, Ecology Ottawa plans to hold two more giveaways in late summer, one in the east end and the other in the west end.

Nominations are now being accepted for the annual Bruce Timmermans Cycling Awards 

Do you know someone or an organization who has been a local champion for cycling in our city? The City of Ottawa is once again accepting nominations for the Bruce Timmermans cycling awards! Two awards will be presented in June to recognize outstanding contributions to cycling in Ottawa. 

EnviroCentre is coordinating the 2024 awards. All nominations are treated as confidential, the deadline for submissions is May 31, 2024. Click here to nominate an individual or organization you believe deserves recognition!  

More information about the Bruce Timmermans awards and a list of past winners can be found on the city’s website, here.  

Volunteer Expo

Volunteer Ottawa is holding its Spring Volunteer Expo on Thursday, May 23, 2024 from 2:00 pm to 5:00 pm at the Rideau Hub Cafeteria (815 St. Laurent Blvd).  This is a free, in-person event where you can speak with dozens of local charities about volunteer opportunities. 

This is a great event for high school students looking for community service hours, seniors and retirees wanting to stay active, and newcomers interested in getting to know the community.  And anyone else interested in volunteering!

Parks Maintenance Spring Update: Sports fields, splash pads, docks

These last few weeks, Parks Maintenance staff have been working tirelessly to get  most ball diamonds open for the season as well as other amenities across the city. Mother Nature, while still unpredictable, has cooperated enough that we are still on track to open this week. 

To get our 529 sports fields ready for use this week, staff have been busy for the last three weeks. In addition to mowing, staff have been conducting inspections, removing litter and installing waste receptacles. They have also cleaned paths that lead to sports fields and any parking lots attached to them. Overseeding will continue this week and aeration and fertilization starts next week. Overseeding is an effective method of weed prevention and aeration reduces the amount of compact soil, promoting healthy turf for a safe and fun season. 

With temperatures expected in the low 20s for the upcoming long weekend, we know some little ones will want to head to one of our 98 splash pads across the city. Many splash pads are currently open and all remaining pads will be operational by Saturday May 18, with the exception of sites where winter weather impacts have required additional repairs.  Sites that are not operational will be listed on ottawa.ca.  

Installing the city’s 28 docks and boat launches along the Ottawa and Rideau Rivers is a time-consuming task. Work began on May 1 and is expected to run through the first week of June. The larger docks are extremely heavy and require use of a Hiab loader crane truck. Any repairs or refurbishing that may have been required were completed over the winter months. While the city’s Freshet season was relatively uneventful, the water levels on the Ottawa River are still too high for dock installations in Constance Bay, and will be installed as soon as water levels permit.

Updates to OPH’s Immunization Support Services

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is excited to announce an expansion to their immunization services to include “virtual” consult services through a dedicated phone line. In addition to in-person care already provided at Neighbourhood Health and Wellness Hubs, parents and families can now receive personalized immunization advice over the phone. These changes aim to ensure that everyone can access timely responses to inquiries and tailored guidance on vaccination questions.

While their website is still an excellent resource for vaccine information, including accessing and updating immunization records, Ottawa residents will now have the option to speak directly to a nurse for more personalized immunization counseling.

This dedicated phone line will enhance the current services offered at our Hubs and respond to the needs of our Ottawa community. These changes aim to address concerns, particularly the fact that over 40% of children in Ottawa are under immunized, leaving them, their families, and our communities susceptible to disease outbreaks. By offering this new service, their goal is to improve equitable access to immunization, especially for those who may face barriers or challenges to attending an in-person clinic to address their important vaccine-related questions.

This new phone service will be launched on May 6, and hours of operation will be Monday to Friday from 9:00 am to noon and 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm. Ottawa residents can access this service by calling 613-580-6744 and following the prompts for immunization support. 

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