This has been an incredibly difficult week in our city. Thousands of us remain without power. Going a week without electricity is a significant challenge, especially our most vulnerable neighbours. I personally remain without power and have not had it since the Saturday storm.
On Tuesday, my team and I provided food, flashlights, some hot water, hallway lighting and power charges to residents living at the community housing building 507 Riverdale. Neighbours have been coming together in the face of what has been a very difficult situation for residents without power. I want to thank everyone who responded to our call to help out our neighbours at the community housing building in Old Ottawa South.
The hardest hit area of our ward continues to be a concern. Last night, Hydro crews were in Old Ottawa South attempting to clean up the many downed trees that remain on power lines in the neighbourhood. This has affected Echo, Riverdale, Belmont, Bellwood, Brighton, Cameron, Scotia, Willard, Rideau River Drive, and parts of Avenue and Southern. Hydro crews with integrated tree teams are attempting to re-energize these areas today.
I have been out talking to residents and receiving messages through email and social media, identifying the streets that are still without power or where trees are still downed, and passing that information on to Hydro Ottawa and city staff.
The Hydro crews are working constantly and, slowly, we are seeing power returned to residents. Yesterday, I was out in the south end of our ward as power was restored to the area around Kaladar, Traverse, Yarmouth and Dartmouth.
I am very thankful for the efforts of the dedicated hydro workers and for the support provided by fellow residents during the aftermath of the storm, and I will continue to work with Hydro to identify areas that are still without power.
At the end of this email, we have included further information about the work and support being provided by the city, the effect on some city services, and the traffic impact.
We also have news about some current and upcoming events in the ward and the city.
We are hosting two upcoming events for the ward, a townhall meeting on Community Benefits agreements, and a community Barbeque and bike ride—a chance for us to re-connect as a community after all we’ve gone through in the past few years, and this past week.
Townhall on Community Benefits Agreements
June BBQ and Bike Ride
We have held a few other events over the past month, including an emergency community consultation on Lansdowne 2.0, our inaugural Older Adult Forum, and a Townhall on Developer Influence. All three events were recorded and can be viewed on our website here.
Lansdowne 2.0 Vote on June 8
Due to the extreme weather event, the city council meeting that was to be held this week was cancelled. The next council meeting will be held on June 8. At that meeting, the new proposal to re-develop Lansdowne Park will be received and considered by council.
At the June 8 meeting, we will be asking council to require full public consultations on the substantive proposals for Lansdowne 2.0 before they are approved. We have launched a petition to that end. Please consider adding your name if you haven't already:
LRT Inquiry Continues
This week, the Ottawa Light Rail Inquiry Commission has been holding hearings on the city’s LRT system. Residents have been giving testimony about their difficulties riding our troubled LRT system and asking pertinent questions about how the system was designed, planned and built, and how the system provider, RTG, was chosen and monitored.
This is an important issue in our city, and I joined Somerset Councillor Catherine McKenney in calling for an inquiry this past winter, and we will both be speaking to the commission. I am very glad that this work is underway.
For more information, including to how you can get involved, please visit the commission’s website.
Food Resources Available for Residents in Need
The City of Ottawa is partnering with community agencies to connect residents in need to food resources during the storm recovery. Food resources, including home delivery and pick-up options, are available throughout the city. To find a food resource near you, visit ottawa.ca/resident-support.
Residents in need can also call 2-1-1 for information on government and community-based health and social services, including food resources.
Residents affected by the power outage who are in need of financial help can also complete an application and be assessed for emergency assistance for loss of food, and in exceptional circumstances, help with medication, medical supplies or personal care. To apply, visit the online application for emergency assistance or call 3-1-1 and select option 4. If you are already in receipt of Ontario Works, please call your case worker directly.
Please note that 3-1-1 is experiencing a higher number of calls than usual. Ottawa residents are asked to remain patient as workers respond to calls as quickly as possible.
The Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) is working directly with the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing to determine if residents will be eligible to submit applications under the Province’s Disaster Recovery Assistance for Ontarians (DRAO) program.
The Community and Social Services Department, the EOC, Ottawa Public Health and the Red Cross continue to work collaboratively to conduct wellness visits throughout the city. Prioritization of wellness visits are being done for residents who continue to be without power.
Immediate priorities for wellness visits today are areas of Overbrook and Nepean, with other areas being triaged as additional information is gathered from partners and community members.
City Emergency Reception Centres
Demand for support at the Emergency Reception Centres continues to decline as power returns to more areas. Currently, the EOC will continue to operate all facilities until at least Friday May 27 from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The EOC is currently evaluating operations beyond Friday to ensure proper supports that meet residents’ evolving needs are available in the communities that require it.
The latest information is found on City’s Storm Recovery website.
Waste Disposal/Debris Pick up
There has been a decrease in demand for organic waste bins. The latest location information is found on City’s Storm Recovery website. These locations will remain in operation until at least Saturday May 28, after which organic waste removal will transition to curbside pickup only. To date, 33 tonnes of food waste were collected through curbside pickup, the equivalent of three school buses.
Curbside collections were not able to be completed for the leaf and yard collection in several wards including Capital Ward. The city has set a priority this week is to ensure that the garbage, green bin and recycling is collected. There will be pick ups of leaf and yard waste in the very near future, including downed branches.
Weekend Special Events
The city is coordinating with the Ottawa Race Weekend team and other organizers to ensure events are executed safely as the city recovers. The running event starts and ends at Ottawa City Hall, 110 Laurier Avenue West, and involves intermittent lane reductions and closures on Saturday, from as early as 1:00 pm until 9:00 pm, and on Sunday, from as early as 5 am until 6 pm, on various roadways along the routes. There will be major road impacts at various times, further information is available on the city’s website. The EOC will monitor these events but this will not cause staff to be diverted from the current response.
The Emergency Operations Centre, in partnership with community agencies will launch a volunteer program for residents interested in helping recovery efforts in their community and for those in need. This program will be similar to Cleaning the Capital where we encourage neighbours to clean up their impacted communities. We're looking for councillors, community associations, and other partners to work together and carry out cleanup efforts in partnership with the city. Further information will be available shortly.
Damage to Property
Many residents have reached out inquiring about what do to with damage to their homes, fences, porches and other property and what permits, or other regulations must be followed.
Please contact City of Ottawa’s Building Code Services at 613-580-2424 ext. 68855 or email [email protected] if:
- Your home, building or structure on your property has experienced structural damage
- You want to arrange for a Building Inspector to visit your property
- You have any questions about renovating or rebuilding
- You are unsure whether you need a Building Permit to do this work
Continued Traffic Disruptions
We continue to experience traffic disruptions throughout the city, mostly due to downed power lines and trees.
Most traffic signals have been repaired although approximately 65 traffic signals remain without Hydro power. In the meantime, City of Ottawa crews are providing temporary power with generators at key intersections from start of AM peak to end of PM peak weekdays.
We are highlighting a number of closed streets, but there are more throughout the city. If you need to drive anywhere, please do so with caution.
- Belmont closed between Riverdale and Bellwood (wires/trees)
- Graham closed between Main St and Echo (trees/wires)
- Hunt Club westbound right-turn lane closed at Uplands (wires)
- Richmond closed between Wavell and Westminster (wires/trees)
- Slack closed between Vann and Woodroffe (wires)
- Slater eastbound reduced to one lane between Empress and Bronson (trees)
- Viewmount closed between Glenmanor and Merivale (wires)
- Viewmount WB closed between Grant Carman and Merivale (wires)
- Greenbank closed between Fallowfield and Hunt Club (wires)
- Hawthorne closed between Whyte Side and Leitrim (wires)
- Hawthorne SB closed between Hunt Club and Whyte Side (wires)
- Lyon closed between McLeod and Catherine (trees)
- Merivale closed between Basil MacDonald and Viewmount (wires)
- Merivale SB reduced to one lane between Family Brown and Basil MacDonald (wires)
- Terry Fox northbound reduced to one lane between Castlefrank/Abbott and Winchester (wires)
- Woodroffe closed between Fallowfield and Hunt Club (wires)
- Ramp closed from 417 WB to Hunt Club WB (wires)
- Ramp closed from Hunt Club EB to 417 WB (wires)
Status of Interprovincial Corridors
- Alexandra Bridge is open
- Champlain Bridge is open
- Chaudière Crossing NB is open while SB is closed (due to construction until June 2023)
- Macdonald-Cartier Bridge is open
- Portage Bridge is open