Column: July 25, 2019

Rural Economic Development Strategy and Official Plan

On July 24, 2019, City of Ottawa staff had the opportunity come out to our rural community to discuss rural economic development and to take a look at examples of successful rural businesses. This relates to the Official Plan review that’s now ongoing. The City staff that attended are the key staff that are working on the policies that will encompass our new Official Plan.

During this session, staff attended two businesses in Carp (KIN Vineyards and Ridge Rock Brewing Co.) to witness first-hand the kind of potential there is for economic development in the rural areas of Ottawa. Ridge Rock Brewing Co. is an exceptional example of how the owners took an abandoned building that was an eyesore in the community, and turned it into a successful business. KIN Vineyards is another shining example of using rural land to create a unique business that adds so much to the rural community.

During this tour and visit, I had an opportunity to address staff. I pushed the importance of rural economic development, especially as over 80% of the City of Ottawa is rural in nature. With this in mind, I also made it clear that while we have an eye on increasing rural economic development, we also need to continue to protect and preserve farmers, farms and farmland. (In February 2019, I met with members of the Ward 5 farming community to discuss their wants and needs as it relates to the Official Plan review).

This Official Plan review is now being done as required by the Planning Act and Provincial Policy Statement, 2014, and will run in coordination with the review of the Infrastructure Master Plan, Transportation Master Plan and the Development Charges By-Law. The City of Ottawa Official Plan provides a vision for the future growth of our City and a policy framework to guide the City’s development to the year 2031. This is the strategic document that guides our City’s growth and development. It impacts how and where the City will grow, now and for years to come. It establishes a policy framework that will inform the shape of the communities where you live, work and play. Its scope may reach as far as the middle of this century and will affect generations to come. I encourage residents to learn more about the Official Plan review by going to ottawa.ca/officialplan. Stay tuned to future columns as this process continues. There will more opportunities for Ward 5 residents to have their say.

Crack sealing work on Thomas A. Dolan Parkway

Beginning the week of July 29, crack sealing work will begin on Thomas A. Dolan Parkway between Sixth Line Road and Barlow Crescent. The work will require lane reductions and traffic will be controlled by flagging personnel.

Garbage collection issues in Ward 5

Over the past couple of weeks, since the Waste Management facility on Westbrook Road experienced a small fire which affected some of the fleet of collection vehicles, there have been some ongoing issues with the garbage pickup schedule from some homes in Ward 5. The City is aware of the issues and are working with the contractor to meet our service standards. The City will continue to be following the City’s Contract Administration Policy to continue to keep Waste Management accountable. In the meantime, the contractor is bringing in additional trucks, mechanics, drivers, and logistics people to help meet the current demand. Please call 3-1-1 immediately if your garbage is not collected on schedule. Make sure to note the "SR Reference Number" given to you when you call. If you do not get timely action from 3-1-1, call our office (we will want this SR number, so we can follow up appropriately).