City of Ottawa's 2018 Budget

2018 Budget.jpg

On December 13th, City Council approved the 2018 budget. This budget maintains the predictability of the previous seven budgets in that it focuses on priorities that matter the most and carries a 2% property tax increase. You likely heard talk of a proposed 2.5% increase but that was withdrawn following the announcement that the City had a surplus for the second straight year and $10M of that surplus would be dedicated to infrastructure renewal.

In Parks & Recreation, planning and consultation will be undertaken for improvements to Beryl Gaffney Park using the master plan for that plan and the $560,000 identified in the budget. Blue Rock Park, in Kars, will see improvements, as will King’s Grant Park and Richmond Lions Park and Gordon & Ivy Scharf Park in Manotick. New parks will be created in the form of Lela Scharf Park, Mud Creek Park and the Spring Pond Parkette, all in Manotick. Also in Manotick, a new park is planned for construction in the new Riverwalk development. Sarah McCarthy Park will be constructed in Richmond. The total funding commitment for these parks, using 2017 and 2018 budget dollars, is $1.7M.

When it comes to traffic improvements, planning is slated for the intersections of Prince of Wales Drive & Bankfield Road, Prince of Wales Drive & Barnsdale Road, First Line Road & Bankfield Road and Rideau Valley Drive & Barnsdale Road. Previously budgeted works are also expected to be carried out this year at Moodie Drive and Fallowfield Road.

The biggest issue across the City, and in every other municipality for that matter, is infrastructure renewal. For 2018, Rideau-Goulbourn will see the resurfacing of Rideau Valley Drive South as well as a small portion of Fallowfield Road around Moodie Drive. Another major renewal project for 2018 is the McBean Street Bridge. There will also be many culvert replacements throughout the ward. In cases like Rideau Valley Drive North, these culvert replacements are the precursor to full resurfacing. The previously mentioned $10M injection into renewal will be discussed early in the new year as recommendations are presented to the Finance & Economic Development Committee on how to allocate those funds.

In other areas, the 2018 budget adds 25 new Ottawa Police officers, 14 new paramedics, $100,000 for rural transportation to be distributed through service agencies, including Rural Ottawa South Support Services. This budget also sees increases to social services spending and increased transit to suburban growth areas as OC Transpo continues to prepare for the opening of LRT in 2018.

If you have any questions about any of the items listed above or anything else on the budget, please do not hesitate to contact me.

North Gower Client Service Centre

Please note that the Client Service Centre in North Gower will be closed on Thursday, December 28th and Thursday, January 4th. Normal hours will resume on Thursday, January 11th. With that said, I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Onward and upward to 2018!

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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. For information on Rideau-Goulbourn issues, please visit RideauGoulbourn.ca.

5514 Manotick Main, 1353 Scharfgate And Other Ward Updates

5514 Manotick Main Street

Last week, we held the last meeting of the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee until September. While there were only two items on the agenda items from Rideau-Goulbourn, they were both zoning applications within the village of Manotick. 5514 Manotick Main Street, also known as the Falls House property, has been featured prominently in this column for over two years. The proposal, as many of you know, is for a new three storey office/commercial building at the corner of Bridge Street and Manotick Main Street. This replaces the former Falls House that was demolished last fall. The zoning application seeks to realign the zoning of the existing property with a parcel of land that was added to it so that the entire property has a uniform zoning and can meet the parking requirements for development. There are also some minor changes to setbacks and height but the building retains the three storey limit as set out in the Manotick Secondary Plan. In recent months, community leaders have assisted me in refining the design and developing a softer look to the building. While there are still some modifications to be made, the most recent design and background on the property can be found at rideaugoulbourn.ca/fallshouse. I encourage you to visit the site and see the updated design.

The owner and the architect are still making refinements in collaboration with various community leaders that have been instrumental in softening the design of the original proposal and creating something that is more in tune with the community’s vision for the village core. Further refinements will include two chamfered corners as well as a hanging clock/sign on the southeast corner of the property.

The wall proposed at the edge of the southeast corner is planned to be built using the existing foundation stones from the Falls House. This will allow the property to front the intersection nicely and will also provide a buffer between the road and proposed patio. It will also provide some uniformity with the two other gateway features at this intersection. Removal of the guard rail will also take away some of the industrial feel of the intersection.

While the zoning application was approved last week, the design will be finalized in the weeks that follow. I want to take this opportunity to thank representatives from the Manotick Village & Community Association, the Manotick Culture, Parks & Recreation Association, the Manotick BIA and the Rideau Township Historical Society for their input throughout this process. We also had two other community leaders assist and I owe a debt of gratitude to them as well. Thanks as well to the community for their input in recent months on this proposal.

The other local item is the 1353 Scharfgate report. This is a development application from Cavanagh and John Gerard Homes in the pre-existing development off of First Line Road. The address is misleading as the current property does not, and will not, have access onto Scharfgate Drive. The development will see McManus Avenue extended through it with the creation of 16 new lots and a park. One of the main issues that came up during consultation was the proposal to build the development with open ditches. Nearby residents were concerned about this lack of conformity with the rest of development. Following this, we were able to work with the developer on achieving that conformity. Therefore, all 16 lots will feature closed ditches.

McLean Bridge Renewal

Work continues to progress on the McLean Bridge Rehabilitation project on the Barnsdale Road in Manotick. Over the last two weeks, the portable temporary traffic control signals (PTTS) were set up and vehicular traffic, pedestrians and cyclists are moving well. The temporary sidewalk on the north side was also installed.

The existing asphalt surface on the south side of the bridge deck was removed and had its surface prepared for new asphalt. The turbidity curtain was placed in the Rideau River. The installation of the turbidity curtain is an environmental protection measure that is required on bridge rehabilitation projects over water.  The re-facing of the pier caps below the bridge deck also started. The old bridge railings on the south side of the bridge have been removed and the suspended platform that allows for worker access has been installed.

Over the next two weeks, the re-facing of the pier caps below the bridge deck will continue and the removal of the old sidewalk on the south side of the bridge will be started.  Next week, work will commence on the removal and replacement of the bridge expansion joints.  

Richmond Forcemain Project

Construction is continuing on the Richmond Forcemain project. Bypass pumping of the Richmond Sewage Pumping Station into lagoon cell ‘C’ has started and will continue until the week of July 24th. This allows for the repairs to the existing forcemain to be carried out. In the coming weeks, there will be localized works along the property line behind the Dallaire Street properties.

The contractor will continue to bring in construction materials to site such as granulars, pipes and fitting materials and they will continue the installation of a granular access road from Eagleson to the west limit of lagoon cell ‘C’. Streets in the construction zone will be monitored daily for construction debris and clean as required.  

If you would like to receive regular updates about this activity, please contact David Brown at David.Brown2@ottawa.ca.

Lyme Disease Kits

Ottawa Public Health has been advising Ottawa physicians and the public since April 2017 that all parts of Ottawa should be considered risk areas for Lyme disease. The prevalence of Lyme disease in blacklegged ticks will fluctuate in time and geographically throughout the Ottawa region. However, as mentioned, all of Ottawa is considered a risk area for Lyme disease.

Lyme disease is an infection caused by a bacteria transmitted through the bite of an infected tick. Not all ticks carry Lyme disease. In Ontario, Lyme disease is spread by the bite of a black-legged tick, commonly known as the deer tick. Most humans are infected through the bite of an immature tick called a nymph, which is very small and are most active in the spring. Adult ticks are larger and active during the late summer and fall.

Ottawa Public Health has put together Lyme disease “kits”, which are available for pickup free of charge at the North Gower Client Service Centre for your information, use and distribution. Each “kit” includes a Lyme disease factsheet, which offers details related to the symptoms of Lyme Disease, tick removal processes, testing protocols and ways to prevent tick bites. The kits also include a tick key, which is designed to help remove any tick that may have attached themselves to a person, a family member, friend or pet. The Client Service Centre is only open on Thursdays. If you are interested in receiving a kit, you can also contact Wendy Eberwein at Wendy.Eberwein@ottawa.ca.

For more information on how to protect yourself and your family, please visit www.ottawa.ca/lymedisease.

Blue Rock Park Renewal

The City is currently working on the design of Blue Rock Park in Kars with the intent on renewing the park in the spring. Unfortunately, due to printing timelines, I wasn’t able to provide as much notice via this column as I would have liked. However, comments are still being accepted until July 14th. You can find out more about the proposed options at www.rideaugoulbourn.ca/blue-rock-park.

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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. For information on Rideau-Goulbourn issues, please visit RideauGoulbourn.ca.

June's ARAC Meeting Agenda and Other Updates

June is always a busy month in Rideau-Goubourn and across the City of Ottawa, with events such as Food Aid Day and the Mayor’s Rural Expo as well as Dickinson Days. Of course, there are Ottawa 2017 events and it all leads up to July 1st where Canada Day events will be taking place in North Gower and Munster.

To kick off the month, there is nothing more exciting than a rousing meeting of the Agriculture & Rural Affairs Committee! Our upcoming June 1st meeting agenda includes the following items:

  • Surplus Farm Severance Zoning Amendments for:
    • 2638 Mackey Road
    • 4779 Carp Road
    • 6462 First Line Road
  • Report on Coach Houses in the Rural area on private services
  • Manotick Mahogany Harbour Dock Project
  • Rural Residential Land Survey: 2015-16 Update
  • Hobbs Municipal Drain
  • All-Way Stop Control at Van Vliet Road & South River Drive
  • 1229 Dwyer Hill Road Development Charge Report

The report on coach houses in the rural area is the response to a direction that had been given by ARAC in the fall. Staff were asked to look at ways of reducing costs and process on building a coach house on private services in the rural area. The proposal before ARAC on June 1st does that. However, I feel more could be done and Committee will explore those options at the meeting.

The report on the Mahogany Harbour Dock will provide an update on the status of this project and speak to the temporary Parks Canada facility being installed this season. It will also lay out the City’s role going forward from an ongoing maintenance perspective.

The report on 1229 Dwyer Hill Road relates to the Dwyer Hill RV Park and the potential sale of the property. This report looks at waiving a portion of the Development Charges owed to the City of Ottawa by the current park owners. The waiver is only available to a potential purchaser and not the current owner.

As usual, the monthly ARAC meeting is held at 10:00am at Ben Franklin Place in Centrepointe.

UPDATE: Munster Sewer Backup

On April 7th, 2017, amidst heavy rainfall and runoff occurring during the spring freshet, the City of Ottawa received eight calls from Munster residents who were experience sewage backups in their basement. Seven of these calls came from the southeast portion of Munster, on Middlewood Court and nearby Dogwood Drive homeowners. At that time, the pumping station became surcharged with stormwater and crews were quick to respond to alleviate the surcharge. Unfortunately, during this time, several homeowners closest to the pumping station saw backups.

After some investigation, it was determined that the pumping station reached capacity due to the existence of sump pumps connected to the system. Since the backup occurred in early April, bypass pumping into the overflow lagoon at the Munster pumping station was activated earlier during rainy periods in early May to reduce the risk of basement flooding. The connection of sump pumps to sanitary sewers also caused capacity issues in Richmond during that same time in April. As a result, I will be working with City staff on developing a program that will seek to encourage the disconnection of sump pumps from the sanitary system. In the meantime, the City will continue to initiate the bypass measures earlier than done previously.

As homeowners, there are options to protect your home against flooding as well. There is information on the City of Ottawa’s website regarding the Residential Protective Plumbing Program. If you did experience flooding as a result of the pumping station backup, you can also file a claim with the City of Ottawa. For more information on the protection program or on how to file a claim, please feel free to contact me at Scott.Moffatt@ottawa.ca.

McLean Bridge Renewal

Beginning the week of the May 15, 2017th, the City of Ottawa commenced construction on the McLean Bridge Rehabilitation on Barnsdale Road. The City of Ottawa has retained the firm, RW Tomlinson Ltd., to complete the work. The McLean Bridge must undergo rehabilitation in order to extend its service life. Work will involve repairing the deck, widening the north sidewalk, removing and replacing the bridge railings, repairing the guard rails, concrete and steel repairs as well as some painting of steel members. The work is planned to begin in mid-May 2017 and continue until late October 2017.

There will be an impact to traffic on the McLean Bridge. Traffic will be reduced to one lane for the duration of construction. With the assistance of portable temporary traffic signals, motorists will be able to safely pass over the bridge during construction. One direction of traffic will proceed at a time. OC Transpo will be impacted by the rehabilitation to the McLean Bridge and will experience a minor delay to the route. Pedestrians will have access to the McLean Bridge at all times.

RW Tomlinson Ltd. will take every precaution to minimize interruptions to the normal life of your family, but as you can appreciate, there may be some inconvenience during the course of the operation of the work including noise and delays. We would like to thank you in advance for your patience and co-operation.

For any emergency outside normal working hours on weekdays and weekends, please call the City at

3-1-1. Should you have any inquiries, please do not hesitate to contact the Project Manager, Elizabeth Murphy at Elizabeth.Murphy@ottawa.ca or by phone at 613-580-2424 ext. 15397.

Dickinson Days & Gathering in the Square

Dickinson Days is happening in Manotick between Friday, June 2nd and Sunday, June 4th. The weekend events celebrate the birthday of Manotick's founder Moss Kent Dickinson with a parade, fireworks, street market, and so much more. You won’t want to miss the Gathering in the Square on Sunday, which be filled with live entertainment, horse drawn wagon rides, guided tours, a flour grinding demonstration, crafts for children, and lots of fun! The Dickinson House will also be open and will be doing a cake cutting and housewarming to celebrate the house being built 150 years ago. 

On Sunday the meal will be a ticketed mechoui barbeque with a choice of meat, salads, and fries. The cost of the meal is $12 for children 11 years old and under and $15 for adults aged 12 and over. We encourage people to reserve a table of 6 or 8. Tickets can be purchased by calling Watson's Mill at 613-692-6455. For a detailed schedule of events, visit watsonsmill.com.

At the same time, you are welcome to visit the good folks at Dickinson House, as they too celebrate Moss Kent Dickinson.  Not only are they honouring Dickinson and his achievements, but they are also part of Doors Open Ottawa.  June 4th will be extra special, not just because of the aforementioned Gathering in the Square, but also the 150th anniversary of the construction of Dickinson House.  To celebrate this milestone, special guests from the past will be in attendance.  Please come and join them for a re-enactment of the Dickinson House housewarming for a piece of birthday cake at 1:30pm.

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If you have any other comments, questions or concerns, please feel free to email me on those as well or contact me by phone at 613-580-2491. For information on Rideau-Goulbourn issues, please visit RideauGoulbourn.ca.