Commemorative Naming Proposal: North Gower Bowling Alley

The City of Ottawa Commemorative Naming Committee is conducting public consultations on three separate naming proposals to:

Rename the North Gower Bowling Alley as “Gerry Lines Bowling Alley”

Gerry Lines Bowling Alley (Ward 21 – Rideau-Goulbourn)

In recognition of Gerry Lines’ extensive community service, the City of Ottawa has been asked to rename the North Gower Bowling Alley as the “Gerry Lines Bowling Alley”.

Gerry Lines served as president of the North Gower Community Centre Board for 11 years. During that time, the Board managed the community centre, the ball diamond, boys’ and girls’ ball teams, as well as the outdoor arena and hockey. Gerry was also instrumental in the development and construction of various recreational facilities in his community, many of which continue to be enjoyed by residents of North Gower. 

View the online proposal for the “Gerry Lines Bowling Alley”.

Wild parsnip, aka poison parsnip - a weed to avoid

According to Weedinfo.ca, wild parsnip is a very common plant that shows up in "abandoned yards, waste places, meadows, old fields, roadsides and railway embankments" and in Ottawa it's popping up more and more. 

In the Ottawa area, it is very common in roadside ditches - particularly in rural areas (though it's creeping into suburban areas and trails a bit more each year):

Flewellyn Road, just east of Shea Rd. The yellow flowered plant is Wild Parsnip (a.k.a., Poison Parsnip).The flower of Wild Parsnip has some resemblance to Queen Anne's lace, though it's flower is yellow instead of white.

It may seem pretty, but stay well away from this "flower".Poison Parsnip is a member of the same family of plants as Giant Hogweed and can cause similar injuries. Touching any part of the plant - or coming into contact with its oil - can lead to phytophotodermatitis and even blindness if the oil gets in your eyes.

Sun exposure causes a reaction with the plant's oils that can cause mild to moderate reddening of the skin with burning sensation. More severe cases can even lead to extreme burning and third degree blistering of the skin.

How to avoid getting burned by poison parsnip

The best way to avoid injury from poison parsnip is to stay well away from it. Avoid any and all contact with it, particularly in sunlight. However, if you need to work near it, or plan to try and remove it, here are precautions you should take:

  1. Dress in long sleeves, long pants and wear gloves.
  2. If your clothes come into contact with poison parsnip, avoid brushing against them when changing and washing them.
  3. Keep animals, and particularly pets, away from the plant. If they come into contact, do not touch or pet them before thoroughly washing the plant's sap off of them.

Please note: Animals can be burned by the combination of the oil and sunlight - in particular if they have little to no fur/hair. 

If you get poison parsnip sap on your skin:

  1. Cover the area so that it isn't exposed to the sun.
  2. Wash the affected area immediately and thoroughly.
  3. If the area is burning, a cool cloth can be used for relief.
  4. Treat blisters as you would minor burn blisters - avoid puncture and keep clean, dry.
  5. See a doctor for more severe burning and blisters. 
  6. For eye contact, thoroughly rinse your eyes and get to an ER immediately.

Wild parsnip burns can take a few days to heal or several months for more severe cases. Some doctors mistake the burns from this plant for poison ivy. Please share this information with your friends, family and neighbors so more people will know what it is and how to avoid it.

If you'd like to learn more, here is some additional reading:

2013 Rideau-Goulbourn road construction and closures

Construction season is well underway with lots of road construction (some closures) that will affect Rideau-Goulbourn residents directly and indirectly. Here are a few you'll want to know about:

Century Road - Closed Wednesday, June 26 to Friday, August 9

A Road Close Authorization has been granted for Century Road East from Manotick Main Street to First Line Road. The purpose of this closure is because Minto’s contractor, Robert Excavating, will be installing and connecting new sanitary, storm and water mains to service the new Mahogany Community in Manotick.

River Road - Closed July 26 to July 29

The City of Ottawa will be closing River Road to complete a culvert replacement. This work is being done on the weekend to minimize the impact to commuters. The road will be closed starting 7pm, Friday, July 26 and will open back up at 6am, Monday, July 29.

City of Ottawa - Road Rehabilitation 2013

All dates listed here are approximate and construction is expected to be completed this year. Various factors, such as weather or availability of materials, can cause delays and extend the construction timeframe.

Flewellyn Road - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27

Ashton Station Rd. to Munster Rd.

Ashton Station Road - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27

Ormrod Rd. to Flewellyn Rd.

Ormrod Road - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27

Ashton Station Rd. to Flewellyn Rd.

Ottawa Street - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27

McBean St. to Eagleson Rd.

King Street - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27, 2013

Ottawa St. to Dead End

Rothbourne Road - Resurfacing, July to (approx.) September 27, 2013

Dead End @ Hwy. 7 to Carp Rd.

McCordick Road - Pavement Preservation, June 3 - July 30

Donnelly Rd. to McMullen Rd.

McCordick Road - Pavement Preservation, June 3 - July 30

Lockhead Rd. W to Church St.

McCordick Road - Pavement Preservation, June 3 - July 30

Roger Stevens Dr. to Century Rd.

McCordick Road - Pavement Preservation, June 3 - July 30

Century Rd. to Brophy Rd.

Pierce Road - Pavement Preservation, June 3 - July 30

Malakoff Rd. to McCordick Rd.

Ormrod Rd. - Guide Rail Upgrade, Dates TBD - approx. completion October

at Flewellyn (south side)

Highway Construction (416 and 417)

There will be various projects on the 416 and 417 this year that will create a variety of lane closures and, no doubt, traffic delays. Here are the key dates and areas work will be done to help you plan your travels.

Highway 416 - July 10-August 16

There will be multiple lane closures during the removal and replacement of a cross culvert. Here are the scheduled dates of lane closures:

July 10-11: Temporary lane closure on Hwy 416 northbound, 3.7km south of Roger Stevens Dr. Traffic reduced to one lane from 7am to 7pm.

July 15: Temporary lane closure on Hwy 416 southbound, 3.7km south of Roger Stevens Dr. Traffic reduced to one lane from 7am to 7pm.

July 15-August 16: Long-term lane closure on Hwy 416 northbound, 3.7km south of Roger Stevens Dr. Traffic reduced to one lane for the duration of the project.

Highway 417 - Weekends in July

Two bridges along the 417 are being replaced this summer using rapid lift technology. This new method of bridge replacement allows for minimal disruptions, but the highway will need to be fully closed overnight for each replacement. Here are the dates and details for both upcoming closures (starting tomorrow, July 6, 2013).

The City streets under each bridge will be closed as well, effective 4:00pm prior to the closing of the highway.

- Kirkwood Avenue Bridge Replacement - July 6-7, 2013

The Queensway will be closed eastbound and westbound at Kirkwood Avenue from 6:00pm on Saturday, July 6 to 11:00am on Sunday, July 7.

Westbound Detour Route:

  • Take Exit 124 at Carling Avenue
  • Follow Carling Avenue westbound
  • Take Highway 417 westbound on-ramp

Eastbound Detour Route:

  • Take Exit 124 at Carling Avenue
  • Take Highway 417 eastbound on-ramp at Kirkwood Avenue

- Carling Avenue Bridge Replacement

The Queensway will be closed eastbound and westbound at Carling Avenue from 6:00pm on Saturday, July 13 to 11:00am on Sunday, July 14.

Westbound Detour Route: 

  • Take Exit 124 at Carling Avenue
  • Follow Carling Avenue westbound
  • Take Highway 417 westbound on-ramp

Eastbound Detour Route:

  • Take Exit 124 at Carling Avenue
  • Take Carling Avenue to Bronson Avenue (turn left)
  • Take Bronson Avenue to Chamberlain Avenue (turn right)
  • Chamberlain Avenue turns into Isabella Street (stay straight)
  • Take Highway 417 eastbound on-ramp

We'll add any additional roads updates to this post through the summer, so keep it bookmarked and check it out before you make your travel plans. 

It's time to celebrate Canada! Here's what you need to know

Come join the festivities in North Gower!

1:00 pm – Annual Bike Parade

Decorate yourself and your bike in Canada’s Colours and/or theme and join us at the North Gower Marlborough Public School for a parade down to the Alfred Taylor Centre. Prizes for the most unique. All ages welcome to participate. For Safety reasons please encourage your children to stay behind the lead Fire Truck.

1:30 pm - Opening Ceremonies

Join us at the pavilion for the singing of O Canada, greetings from our elected representatives, the judging of the bikes and a slice of cake.

1:45 pm - Rides and Activities

Fun for everyone – Gumball bouncing house, volcano climbing wall, kiddie slide, 65’ obstacle course, dunk tank, cow milking, plinko, or challenge friends to the wrecking ball.

Fireworks at Dusk (Raindate – July 2/13)

Bring your lawn chair, relax have a chat with your neighbours, and enjoy the show. Many thanks to our Volunteer Firefighters. 

Canada Day Safety Tips

  • Check the weather and prepare for hot temperatures and the possibility of rain
  • Know the signs and symptoms of heat illness and take action immediately
  • Drink plenty of water and keep hydrated when active or outdoors
  • Be Sun Smart - wear sunscreen, hat, sunglasses, and light and loose clothing
  • Do not bring glass containers downtown as they may accidently break and cause serious injuries to you or someone else
  • Wear proper and comfortable shoes –if you head downtown, roads near the Hill are closed to vehicles, so you will be doing lots of walking
  • If you take medication, bring it with you and include a current list of prescribed medications
  • If you do not feel well, please stay home
  • If you are heading downtown to see the fireworks, keep within designated areas only—fences protect you from danger, do not climb over them to get a better vantage point of the fireworks
  • Keep a close eye on children and teach them to stay where they are if they get separated from you and know where the nearest lost child tent is located
  • Refrain from or minimize consumption of alcoholic beverages
  • If consuming alcohol. use Canada’s Low-Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines to protect yourself and your loved ones:
    • Set limits for yourself and stick to them.
    • Drink slowly – have no more than two drinks in any three hour period.
    • For every drink of alcohol, have one non-alcoholic drink.
    • Eat before and while you are drinking.
    • Always plan for a safe ride home.

Fireworks Safety

To minimize the risk of fire and burn injury, the Ottawa Fire Services recommends that everyone attend public fireworks displays organized and monitored by fireworks experts. (Like the one in North Gower!)

We would also like to remind who are planning to use fireworks this Canada Day weekend to practice caution and comply with the Fireworks By-law to ensure everyone has a safe and enjoyable holiday.

The City’s Fireworks By-law outlines the rules around fireworks use. Anyone planning to have fireworks displays over the Canada Day weekend should do so in a safe and courteous manner.

Consumer fireworks may be discharged on the day of, the day before or the day after Canada Day. They must be discharged by someone 18 years or older, and on private property, with permission of the property owner. The fireworks display must not cause danger or nuisance to any person or property.

It is also important to note that the sale of consumer fireworks, except on Canada Day and the seven business days immediately preceding Canada Day, is prohibited.

Display fireworks, such as those on Parliament Hill and smaller-scale versions at public parks on Canada Day weekend, may only be discharged by someone over 18 who holds a permit issued by the Ottawa Fire Chief. Applications for these permits must be submitted 30 days before the intended display.

Firecrackers are prohibited from being used or sold in the City of Ottawa or Province of Ontario. Anyone selling, purchasing or using firecrackers within the City of Ottawa is in violation of the Fireworks By-law as well as provincial law.

Please review Ottawa’s Fireworks By-law on ottawa.ca for further details. Residents wanting more information or having questions about the Fireworks By-law can contact 3-1-1.

If you still choose to have a family fireworks or an informal neighbourhood display. Here are some important safety tips to be followed: 

  • Purchase your fireworks from a reliable source.
  • Always read and follow the label directions exactly.
  • Adults must supervise the lighting and handling of fireworks at all times.
  • Always keep water handy (a garden hose or bucket of water).
  • Discharge fireworks away from combustible materials, including buildings and trees.
  • Keep children and spectators a safe distance away from fireworks when the fireworks are discharged.
  • Light only one firework at a time.
  • Never re-light a “dud” firework (wait 15 to 20 minutes, then soak it in a bucket of water).
  • Never give fireworks to small children, including sparklers. While sparklers are often considered harmless fun, they can burn twice as hot as a typical kitchen oven (they can burn at 650 C or 1,200 F), can ignite clothing, and cause eye damage and burns.
  • Dispose of fireworks properly by soaking them in water and then disposing of them in a metal garbage can.

For more information on fireworks safety please visit Ottawa.ca/fire.

The annual spring burn ban is now in effect...here are the details:

The aftermath of a brush fire. Source: Morguefile

UPDATE: The burn ban has been lifted as of April 30, 2013.

Every spring Ottawa Fire Services issues a city-wide burn ban to prevent grass and brush fires that can spread very quickly after the snow melts and before we start to see green again. 

The ban will remain in place as long as conditions remain dry. This winter left us with more debris on the ground, such as fallen tree branches, leaves, etc., which has created an increased risk.

IMPORTANT: All open air fires are prohibited during a fire ban, even if you have a burn permit for your property. For the safety and protection of all City of Ottawa residents, there is zero tolerance enforcement during the ban. 

How can you reduce risk of fire on your property?

It's spring cleanup time for everyone! Here are some things you can do to help prevent fires from starting near your home and other property.

  • Clear all combustible materials such as tree limbs, leaves and other dry materials away from buildings and propane tanks
  • Keep BBQ propane tanks at least 3 m from buildings.
  • Wood piles should stored a safe distance from the home
  • Trees should be pruned to create a good vertical separation from the ground
  • Clear out any accumulated dry/dead debris from property

Cigarettes

Carelessly discarded cigarettes continue to be a major cause of grass fires during these dry periods. Smokers are reminded to please use care when butting out. Do not throw lit cigarettes out vehicle windows.

Waste disposal

  • Place all yard waste for pickup in compostable paper bags, garbage cans or cardboard boxes
  • Ensure containers and bundles weigh no more than 15 kg (33 lbs)
  • Place any extra leaf and yard waste in the green bin
  • Tie all branches in bundles of less than 1.2 m (4 ft) in length and 60 cm (2 ft) in width
  • Individual branches should be less than 10 cm (4 in) in diameter
  • Leave grass clippings on the lawn
  • Leaf and yard waste will not be collected as regular garbage
  • more information on yard waste disposal visit ottawa.ca

In the event that you see a fire happening, stay away from the area and call 9-1-1 to report it.

Watch our site to get updates about when the burn ban is lifted.

Hazeldean Road watermain upgrade from Edgewater Street to Castlefrank Road

Construction to replace the watermain along Hazeldean Road between Kincardine Drive and Castlefrank Road is scheduled to recommence. The project, which was started in fall 2012,is expected to be completed by October, 2013.

Construction work related to the watermain upgrade will require access to Young Road from Hazeldean to be closed starting April 17 for a period of approximately two weeks.

In accordance with the City of Ottawa’s Infrastructure Master Plan and to enhance service, the existing iron watermain, which was installed under the eastbound lanes of Hazeldean Road in 1976, is being upgraded to match the size of the existing feedermain east and west of the project limits.

The Hazeldean Road watermain upgrade from Kincardine Drive to Castlefrank Road is a $6.8 million project. For more information, visit ottawa.ca/hazeldean

Hazeldean Road watermain upgrade is an Ottawa on the Move project, which advanced $340 million of capital projects to be completed from 2012 to 2014. Ottawa on the Move is about keeping our community and economy moving forward through strategic investments in a number of transportation, water, and sewer projects to build a better city and create jobs.

Door-to-door salespeople making false claims about water quality

The City of Ottawa has received several complaints from residents who have been contacted by salespeople of water-filtration or treatment systems and provided incorrect information pertaining to water quality. The City reminds residents that Ottawa’s drinking water is completely safe and of the highest quality, which is ensured through rigorous and ongoing testing.

In addition, residents are reminded that City employees do not contact residents to sell products or services. Except for emergency situations, any visits that may require access to homes or businesses by City staff are scheduled in advance.

Residents are also provided with advance notice of projects that may impact them. All employees requesting access to homes have City-issued photo identification cards. Residents who are directly contacted by persons claiming to be City employees for City business are asked to check identification, and, if concerns remain, contact the City prior to allowing access. Residents are also asked to report any suspicious, unsolicited calls or visits.

The drinking water delivered to City residents exceeds all federal and provincial health-based water-quality guidelines and standards. Ottawa’s drinking water has already been rated by the Ministry of the Environment (MOE) as being among the safest in the world.

As recently as this year, the Chief Drinking Water Inspector for Ontario again recognized the quality of Ottawa’s drinking water. The City has an extensive drinking water quality analysis program and posts all of these results on our website, www.ottawa.ca.

If you have any questions about this or any other concern, please call 311 (for urgent matters) or 613-580-2491 to speak with Scott.

Monday, February 18th is Family Day - here's what's open and closed

The City of Ottawa would like to remind residents of the following schedule changes for Family Day (Monday, February 18).

Recreation services:

  • Rink of Dreams, located on Marion Dewar Plaza at Ottawa City Hall, is open on Family Day for the Mayor’s Annual Family Day Skating Party, weather permitting.
  • Most recreation facilities will be modifying their hours of operation on Monday, February 18. There may be changes to schedules and program cancellations in order to provide special programming for the Family Day holiday. Additional swimming and skating sessions will be offered at many sites. Please check schedules at ottawa.ca or with the facility of your choice.

Client services:

  • Ottawa City Hall and all seven Client Service Centres, including the Government Service Centre located at 110 Laurier Avenue West, will be closed on Family Day, February 18. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, February 19.
  • The City’s Provincial Offences Court, located at 100 Constellation Crescent, will also be closed on Family Day. Business will resume as usual on Tuesday, February 19.
  • The City’s 3-1-1 Contact Centre will be open for urgent matters requiring the City’s immediate attention. Call 3-1-1 or 613-580-2400 to speak to a customer service representative. For persons living with a hearing-related disability, call (TTY): 613-580-2401.

Garbage, green bin and recycling collection:

  • There will be no curbside green bin , recycling or garbage collection on Family Day. Family Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, February 19. In addition, the collection of green bin, garbage and recycling materials will be delayed by one day for the week of February 18. For curbside collection enquiries, refer to the collection calendar tool.
  • There will be no multi-residential green bin and recycling container collection on Family Day. Family Day’s pick-up will take place on Tuesday, February 19. Collection will also be delayed by one day for the week of February 18. However, multi-residential garbage container collection is not delayed and collection will take place on its regularly scheduled day during the week of February 18.
  • The Trail Road landfill site is closed on Family Day, Monday, February 18.

Transit service:

  • OC Transpo will operate a revised weekday schedule with minor reductions on Monday, February 18. Special school trips and school routes numbered in the 600s will not operate. The $7.75 DayPass will be valid as a Family DayPass. Call 613-560-1000 or text 560560 plus your four-digit bus stop number for automated schedule information. For more information, holiday schedules and travel planning, phone 613-741-4390 or visit octranspo.com.
  • OC Transpo Sales and Information Centres will be open from 7a.m. until 6p.m. on February18, except the Rideau Centre office, which will be open from 10 a.m. until 6 p.m.
  • The OCTranspo Telephone Information Centre (613-741-4390) will be open from 7a.m. to 9 p.m.
  • The OC Transpo Customer Relations Department (613-842-3600) will be open from 8a.m. to 5:30p.m.

Cultural services:

  • Billings Estate National Historic Site and Shenkman’s Arts Centre are open for Family Day events.
  • City of Ottawa Archives, arts centres, galleries, theatres,Cumberland Heritage Village Museum and Pinhey’s Point Historic Site will be closed on Family Day. However, clients should check with ottawa.ca or their facility to confirm holiday hours, as some exceptions may apply.

Municipal child care services:

Library services:

  • All branches, departments and services of the Ottawa Public Library will be closed on Family Day, Monday, February 18. Regular hours will resume Tuesday, February 19.

Ottawa Public Health:

It's cold out there today - take care and be safe!

Ottawa Public Health (OPH) has issued a Frostbite Warning to ensure people take appropriate precautions before going outside and to encourage homeless people to seek shelter from the cold indoors. This warning is in effect for the evening of January 22 until the morning of January 24, 2013.

A Frostbite Warning goes into effect when:

  • A wind chill of -35 or colder is predicted for the Ottawa area
  • Extreme weather conditions, such as a blizzard or an ice storm is predicted

With a wind chill of -35 or colder, exposed skin can freeze in less than ten minutes. There is also an increased risk of hypothermia for people who stay outside for long periods of time without adequate protection. Overexposure can result in severe injury and even death. OPH recommends that you wear several layers of clothing to keep warm and make sure that the outer layer protects you from wind and wetness.

The homeless are particularly vulnerable to cold weather. There are many services available to help the homeless:

  • Emergency sleeping spaces in Ottawa shelters
  • Street outreach services to encourage homeless people to come in from the cold
  • Provision of emergency transportation and other services by the Salvation Army

To seek assistance for a homeless person, concerned citizens are encouraged to call The Help for the Homeless Phone Line at 613-580-2626.

Calls are answered by the City of Ottawa Call Centre on a priority basis and referrals are made to the appropriate services.

Look for our live extreme weather updates on Twitter @OttawaHealth

For more information visit ottawa.ca/health or call 613-580-6744 (TTY: 613-580-9656). You can also connect with OPH on Facebook and Twitter (@ottawahealth) for the latest news from OPH.

Ottawa Public Health has issued a heat warning for June 19-21 - stay safe in the heat!

The Medical Officer of Health is issuing a Heat Warning for June 19 to 21. A heat warning is declared when Environment Canada forecasts a humidex of 40 or hotter for at least two consecutive days. It is important to know that extreme heat can cause dehydration, heat exhaustion, heat stroke and even death.
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Traffic slowdowns on Knoxdale Road

Motorists travelling along Knoxdale Road between Craig Henry Drive and Millford Avenue can expect delays as construction crews replace sanitary sewers. Work is scheduled to begin Monday, April 30 and will last until July 31, 2012.
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Are your immunizations up to date? Find out and protect the ones you love

National Immunization Awareness Week in Canada is April 21 to 28 and Ottawa Public Health (OPH) is reminding residents to update their immunizations. Immunization is recognized as the most cost-effective way to decrease vaccine-preventable diseases in Canada.
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OC Transpo implements spring service changes April 22

Effective Sunday, April 22, OC Transpo will introduce spring service improvements on many routes, as well as some reductions that reflect the lower seasonal demand for service. The Rack & Roll program also returns for spring and runs through until the fall, with bike racks reinstalled on close to 500 buses.
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Spring cleaning and household hazardous waste

Spring cleaning season is upon us. The City of Ottawa would like to encourage you to dispose of your waste in safest and most environmentally friendly way. There are a number of options available for the disposal of household hazardous waste.
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Apply for funding from the Ottawa Rural CleanWater Grants Program

The City of Ottawa is receiving applications for its popular Ottawa Rural Clean Water Grants Program (ORCWGP). The program provides grants to projects that protect groundwater and surface water in rural areas. Landowners completing projects in 2012 may be eligible for up to $15,000 in grants depending on the project they are undertaking. The application deadlines are May 1, 2012 (and September 30, 2012, if funds available).
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Spring 2012 Well Water Testing - Everything you need to know

Residents who are on a well should test their water regular to ensure their water supply is safe to drink. It is recommended that testing for bacteria is completed three times a year and after major plumbing work. Testing for nitrates is also recommended. In agricultural areas, residents may also wish to test for pesticides, herbicides, gasoline and solvents.
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Seasonal load restrictions for heavy vehicles

REMINDER: During the spring thaw period, many roads in the City of Ottawa cannot withstand heavy loads. As of 6 pm Thursday, March 15, 2012, all commercial vehicles or trailers with a gross vehicle weight in excess of 5 tonnes or 11,000 lbs. per axle are prohibited on roads where restriction signage is posted, and on all roads identified as restricted on the 2012 Truck Route Map.
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