In next week’s column, I will be previewing the November 23rd meeting of the Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee but, even though it is a month away, I just wanted to provide an advance reminder that we will be hosting ARAC in Manotick on December 10th. At that meeting, City planning staff will be presenting an updated version of the Manotick Secondary Plan, along with the Mud Creek Subwatershed Study, for review by the Committee members. This meeting will begin at 6:30pm at the Manotick Community Centre Hall, 5572 Doctor Leach Drive. There will be an opportunity for members of the public to speak to the Committee after the staff presentation. The report will be available on ottawa.ca one week prior to the meeting date. For more information on the Manotick Secondary Plan review, please visit Ottawa.ca/manotickplan.
Jockvale Road Widening
The preliminary design for the Jockvale Road Widening (Cambrian Road to Prince of Wales Drive) is underway. The City’s design team requires borehole data to aid in the design process and is currently planning to complete the boreholes along Jockvale Road and Prince of Wales Drive over a span of three to four weeks commencing the end of November 2015 and completing towards the end of December 2015. This work will involve several lane closures while the bore holes are being completed.
Manotick Watermain Link
Even though the backup watermain link into Manotick has been delayed, preliminary works are still ongoing. The City has retained a geotechnical firm to complete a hydrogeological investigation of the proposed tunneling locations of the Manotick Watermain Link. This notification I am providing you is after the fact as the boreholes were drilled last week at the following locations:
- Walter Upton-Collins Park
- David Bartlett Park
- Bravar Drive within the existing roadway
- McLean Crescent within the existing roadway
The boreholes are needed at this stage to complete the functional design of the watermain. All boreholes are located on City property. Obviously, I would have preferred to provide notice prior to any works but the intent was to advance the project’s schedule by completing the work in November of 2015 (i.e. before the arrival of snow and freezing temperatures) rather than waiting to the spring of 2016. Hopefully this work didn’t provide any inconveniences and, in case you saw it being undertaken, you now know what the City was up to.
Councillor for Hire - City of Ottawa Beneficial Use Program
My latest adventure in being a Councillor for Hire was kind of a two parter. Over the past few years, I have, on two occasions, worked within the City’s of Ottawa’s Environmental Services Department. Initially, I spent a day at the Robert O. Pickard Environmental Centre and then also at the Trail Road Landfill. In September and October of this year, I went back to work for ESD but this time in the City’s Beneficial Use Program. The key component of the Beneficial Use Program? Biosolids.
Part one of the job involved learning about the land application of biosolids. On Thursday, September 24th, I visited two sites that were subject to land application this fall. One site, near Pakenham, was in the midst of application when I was on site. On any site, there are Best Management Practices that are followed, including buffer zones around wells and surface water, inspections by City staff and free well testing for properties adjacent to land application site. The contractor, Third High Farms, provides all of the equipment to carry out the job and coordinates the drop off, spreading and cultivation almost simultaneously. Within two hours, the biosolids are cultivated into the soil to avoid odours. Following the visit to this site, I went to a site that was cultivated just several days prior. Even after such a short period of time, it was very difficult to smell any odours or see any evidence of biosolids on the site.
Part two of this Councillor for Hire experience was Friday, October 23rd with a tour of Third High Farms’ storage facility in Iroquois. Third High Farms contracts with more than just the City of Ottawa and this site in Iroquois is where the operation runs out of. Third High Farms takes approximately 50,000 tonnes of material a year from Ottawa, the majority of which is applied to land.
The City of Ottawa is actually a leader in Canada when it comes to municipal biosolids. The program is governed by the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs, the Environment Protection Act and the Nutrient Management Act.
Biosolids application only takes place in the City during the spring and the fall. When a site is chosen for application, adjacent property owners receive notification as do I. Each year, I receive notification for approximately 5 or 6 sites within Rideau-Goulbourn. This opportunity to visit these sites and learn more about the process was very beneficial as it gave me a sense of what measures must be met in order to facilitate this program. This is a program that offers multiple benefits to farmers, the City of Ottawa and also keeps a firm focus on public health and the environment.
If you wish to learn more about the Beneficial Use Program, visit Ottawa.ca and search Beneficial Use. My next Councillor for Hire will take me to the Richmond Curling Club this month. If you wish to “hire” me for a day, let me know!
Rideau Township Historical Society News
You are invited to come & join the Rideau Township Historical Society at the Manotick United Church at 8:00 pm on Wednesday, November 18, 2015. RTHS will be celebrating the launch of Bill & Georgie Tupper’s new book, “The Dickinson Men of Manotick “. Come and learn about the founder of Manotick and his sons. The event is free; refreshments will be served. The book will be available for sale.
This latest book follows a long list of RTHS publications that include Kars on the Rideau, Cheese Factories of Rideau Township, The Women of Dickinson House and many more. These books are available for purchase at the Rideau Archives building in North Gower, which is open on Tuesdays.
If you have any comments, questions or concerns, please feel free to email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491.