Column: Ward updates and events

I’m going to start off this week with a few quick updates on some meaningful issues around our communities.  Looks like I spoke too soon last week regarding the truck traffic resulting from the Mahogany development.  The trucks have been diverted from First Line Road/Century Road and have now been instructed to use the existing truck routes accessing their site from south of the village of Manotick.

As many of you likely heard, the Strandherd/Armstrong Bridge fell victim to a faulty contractor last week.  The good news is that the City retains a $23M performance bond and is moving quickly to complete construction and prevent any delays in the construction schedule.  There will likely be more updates in the coming weeks.  On a smaller note, following the sewer installation projects, the paved shoulder on the west side of Rideau Valley Drive, south of Bankfield, will be reinstalled in the coming months creating a safer avenue for pedestrians and cyclists.

I also wanted to acknowledge that I have received several messages of concern about the conditions of our local gravel roads.  With the spring thaw coming out of the roads early this year, it does make for difficult driving conditions and I have been sure to relay comments to our roads maintenance department for their action.

Dementia Info Session in Richmond
In partnership with a number of church communities in Richmond, the Alzheimer Society of Ottawa and Renfrew County, and other service agencies, the Western Ottawa Community Resource Centre is pleased to provide the community with an April morning filled with some fun and lots of information about supports available to those caring for a parent or loved one suffering with dementia.

There will be entertainment, food, socializing, sharing of personal experiences, information and connections directly with service providers to be made. There is no cost to attend; the purpose is to empower the caregivers in our community with information.

Target audience: Those in our community who are caregivers of loved ones with dementia who are looking for support, assistance, information and a day out. For more information, or to register in advance, please contact Julie McKercher, Rural Community Developer ~ West Carleton & Goulbourn, Western Ottawa Community Resource Centre by email at mckercher@wocrc.ca or by calling 613.591.3686 x 498.

North Gower Coop Nursery School
Saturday, April 21, 2012 marks the date for the Annual Dance & Silent Auction benefitting the North Gower Cooperative Nursery School.  This year’s theme is Mexican Fiesta, with tickets available at $20 by calling 613-493-0020.  The dance and silent auction is to be held at the Alfred Taylor Recreation Centre between 8pm-1am.  This is always a great event with plenty of auction items.  Be sure to come out and support the Nursery School, you’ll be amazed at the great deals on auction items!  As an added bonus, I believe my wife signed me up to be a bartender’s assistant for the evening so that should be fun as well.  C’mon out and let me pour you a cold one!

North Gower Easter Market
The North Gower Farmers' Market will be holding its annual Easter Market on April 7, 2012 at the North Gower RA, 2300 Community Way, North Gower.  It will run from 9:00am to 3:00pm.  There will be lots of homemade foods and baked goods.  There will also be many local artisans with quality handmade creations. Breakfast and lunch will be available.  For more information check out our website at www.ngfarmersmarket.com or call 613-489-9794.

OC Transpo: MyTransit App
The new MyTransit-OC Transpo mobile app is now available for free from the App Store for the iPhone, iPod and iPad – giving riders instant access to information on bus routes, closest stops and predicted arrival times. It is available in both English and French. The features of the app enables users to search routes and stops, save frequently used route information and updates as favourites, receive alerts on detours or cancellations, and check fare and bus pass information. In addition, the app uses GPS data to identify the user’s location and shows the nearest bus stops on an easy-to-use map.

Users are reminded that while the app is free, regular 3G or 4G data usage will be required and any incurred costs will be dependent upon the user’s data plan. As this is a first-generation app, improvements will be made as necessary.

Real-time bus schedules may also be accessed through text messages by typing 560560 along with the four-digit stop number or first three letters of the Transitway Station name. Since some routes have more than one bus serving them, the user will be prompted for more info or the user can insert location, route and direction in the same initial text.

For more transit information, visit octranspo.com.

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If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or by phone at 613-580-2491. Be sure to follow me and Rideau-Goulbourn on Twitter and like our Facebook page to get regular updates on what's happening in the Ward and across the City.