Updates on LRT and the OLG

I hope everyone had a great Canada Day weekend and let’s hope the rest of the summer is a little less wet than June was.  According to farmzone.com, the average rainfall in Ottawa in June is 85mm whereas we received nearly 130mm of precipitation in June of this year.  For our local farmers and for the enjoyment of summer, hopefully we’ll have a much better July and August.

While summer is officially upon us, there is still some work to do at City Council in the coming weeks including a vote on the plan for LRT between Tunney’s Pasture and Baseline Station and another vote concerning a casino in Ottawa. I’d like to take this opportunity to discuss the upcoming vote on the casino issue that will come before the Finance & Economic Development Committee (FEDCO) on Tuesday, July 9th and rise to full Council on Wednesday, July 17th

For those new to the issue, Council first considered whether or not Ottawa was to be a willing host to a new or expanded casino in October 2012.  This was due to the Modernization Plan put forward by the Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corporation (OLG) that suggested new locations for casinos throughout Ontario.  Council voted 19-5 in favour of being a willing host, sending the message to the OLG that Ottawa should be considered for a new casino.  At that time, and with the support of residents throughout Rideau-Goulbourn, I voted against the idea as I felt the only desire of the OLG was a downtown casino and this would come at the cost of the existing Rideau-Carleton Raceway (RCR).  RCR is an integral part of our rural communities and its potential closure would result in the loss of nearly 1000 jobs, which, in my mind, would be completely unacceptable.  My opposition was not against the idea of expanding gaming, but against the potential loss of the RCR.  I was always of the mind that if we expand gaming in Ottawa or if we build a new casino in Ottawa, that it should be on the same grounds at RCR.

This brings to us to a motion before FEDCO on July 9th, put forward by Mayor Jim Watson, which states “that the Ontario Lottery & Gaming Corporation be informed, prior to the start of the RFP process, that the only location acceptable to the City of Ottawa for an expanded gaming facility is the current location at the Rideau Carleton Raceway.”  This is a welcome change in direction from the support of a downtown casino that responds directly to the overwhelming support of RCR from the residents of Ottawa.  From October until today, I have consistently heard from residents across the City, either via email or in person, if we are to see a new or expanded casino that it should be at RCR.

In recent weeks, we’ve seen one individual come forward and suggest that he should be allowed to bid on a casino for him to build on land that he currently owns.  However, at no point in the last eight months have we heard from residents of Kanata/Stittsville, or any other community for that matter, indicating that they want a new casino in their community.  A new casino in a community like Kanata/Stittsville would decimate existing restaurant and hotel businesses and create a gambling environment in a community where that environment does not currently exist.  Without the support of the people that actually live in the community, I would not support the construction of a new casino in it and nor should the elected officials that represent that community.

Rideau Carleton Raceway was established long before any new developments have encroached upon it and a considerable buffer still exists between Findlay Creek and their site on Albion Road.  It is the logical choice for an expanded casino operation and I am happy to support our call to the OLG that this be the only location considered.  I strongly encourage my colleagues on Council to do the same.   I look forward to this vote and I want to thank all of you for the support you have shown for Rideau Carleton in recent months.

Watson's Mill Beer Tasting

Join the good people at the Watson’s Mill in Manotick on Friday, July 12th, between 7:00 and 10:00pm, for their annual beer tasting event.  Your $30 event admission will include five 4oz. sample tickets redeemable at any of the brewery stations with additional sampler tickets available during the event.  Approximately 8-10 local craft breweries will be in attendance, including Hog’s Back, Kichesippi, Mill Street, Beau’s, and others.  There will be appetizers and live jazz music provided by the Swamp Water Jazz Band. Each admission ticket will be given one ballet to vote for their favourite brewery and the winning brewery will win an intimate pairing and tasting session with Indulge’s renowned Chef David Godsoe, which will take place at Watson’s Mill later in the fall. For more information, visit: https://www.facebook.com/WatsonsMill2013CraftBeer

Treats, Treasures and Open Market

The Kars Recreation Association wants to invite local residents to stop by the RA grounds between 9:00am and 3:00pm on Saturday, July 20th to mingle, browse and purchase art, crafts and homemade edibles from people in your community. Admission and parking are free.  This event coincides with the annual International Dog Show taking place on the Kars RA Grounds from Friday, July 19 until Sunday, July 21st.  The Kars RA is located at 1604 Old Wellington Street in the beautiful village of Kars.  For more information, please visit www.kars.ca

Flewellyn Road Closure

I’d really like to thank everyone on Flewellyn Road for their patience this summer as construction will affect this particular road due to three separate projects stretching the entire length of the road.  Earlier, we announced closures between Huntley Road and Eagleson Road due to the Enbridge Gas pipeline reinforcement project.  Beginning this month, we’ll also begin the resurfacing of Flewellyn Road, between Munster Road and Ashton Station Road.  The latest notice of closure is concerning the portion between Munster Road and Dwyer Hill Road for the renewal of a bridge.  This closure will begin July 2 and last until August 22.  Local and emergency traffic will maintain access and a signed detour will be in place.  Thank you again for your patience.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491.

Polo for Learning and other upcoming events

Source: Polo for LearningOn Saturday, June 15, there is a great new event coming to the Manotick area, called Polo for Learning.  This event takes places at the Ottawa Polo Club, 1600 Bankfield Road, from 12:00-4:00pm.

Polo for Learning supports charities who contribute to sustained wellness and improved quality of life for children.  Access to what is needed in childhood inspires children to become healthy, confident, creative, empathetic, involved members of society.

There are 2 seating options; General Admission and VIP.Our General Admission guests will enjoy picnic grass seating.  We encourage you to bring your folding chairs for the afternoon.  Pack along a lunch or look for the charity barbecue on site. For those wanting a more VIP atmosphere, tables are available in a specially designated area.  VIP guests enjoy a catered lunch while mingling with the polo players between matches.

There will be activities for children throughout the afternoon, hosted by the charities. Between the two polo matches everyone will be welcome onto the field for the time honoured Divot Stomp tradition. The Silent Auction is open from noon until 3:30 with some special items auctioned live during the event.

At 4:00 pm are the final award ceremony and the closing of the event.

Individual tickets are $10, while family tickets are available for $25. A VIP tent seat is also available for $40. Tickets can be purchased at the Manotick Office Pro, My Toy Shop and the Manotick branch of RBC, who is also a major sponsor of this event.  You can also purchase tickets from me by calling 613-580-2491 or sending me an email at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca.

Cambrian Road Class Environmental Assessment

The City of Ottawa is preparing for the future widening of Cambrian Road from two to four lanes between the future re-alignment of Greenbank Road to Jockvale Road. As part of this process, the City is hosting an Open House on Tuesday, June 18 from 5:00-8:00pm at the Walter Baker Sports Centre. This widening project has been identified as a future growth project in both the previously approved Barrhaven South Community Design Plan, (June 2006) and the City of Ottawa Transportation Master Plan (2008).

By attending, you'll find out about the alternative solutions and technically preferred plan for the Cambrian Road widening project.  As well, you will have the chance to discuss the study with the project team and provide your input on the proposals to accommodate future transportation demands, cycling and pedestrian needs, storm water management, and current and future community needs and their cost implications.

This study is being planned in accordance with the requirements of the Municipal Class Environmental Assessment, 2011, which is an approved process under the Environmental Assessment Act. For additional information, visit ottawa.ca/cambrian.

Don't forget!

Victorian Wedding

The Rideau Township Historical Society is hosting a special event on the lawn at Dickinson House on Saturday, June 15 at 2:00pm.  A mock Victorian wedding will be staged, and everyone is invited to come and join in the fun.  Refreshments will be served.  In the event of rain, the ceremony will move to the Mill.  This event is free.

War of 1812 Tribute

The Goulbourn Museum is hosting a War of 1812 Tribute this Father’s Day, Sunday, June 16 from 11:00am to 4:00pm. This commemoration of the War of 1812 and our 100th Regiment will feature an old fashioned photo booth, BBQ, silent auction, book fair along with free crafts and games. Further, this event will include horse and buggy rides along Huntley Road. For residents commuting through Stanley’s Corners this weekend, please be cautious around the Museum, located just south of Flewellyn Road at 2064 Huntley Road.

Flewellyn Road Closure

As part of their Ottawa Reinforcement Project, Enbridge will be installing a new gas main along Flewellyn Road which will result in the closure of Flewellyn Road, from Shea Road to Huntley Road, from June 24 to July 31.  Notification signs will be posted in advance of the closure.  Local and emergency access will be maintained.  Detours will be in place.

If you have any questions, comments or concerns, please email me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491.