Category Archives: Transportation

CBC: Cost of Kanata road widening grows secretly, councillor says

From Laura Osman at CBC Ottawa:

City councillors are being asked to increase the budget for a controversial road-widening project in Kanata South by $4 million, according to one city councillor for the area — but they don’t know it.

The $38.7-million Kanata South Link project involves widening Old Richmond Road and West Hunt Club Road to Highway 416 in order to alleviate major traffic congestion caused by new housing developments.

The roads are currently two lanes wide, and they act as a major commuter route through the greenbelt in a quickly developing part of the suburbs.

They also run into Coun. Rick Chiarelli’s ward. He told CBC News it took him nearly a week of digging to discover the cost of the project had ballooned by $4 million because it’s not apparent in the budget documents.

Chiarelli said he was never alerted to the increase, which is set to be approved in the 2018 budget on Wednesday.

Read the full article…


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NOTEBOOK: A SkyTrain to Stittsville

About 100 residents were at last night’s LRT open house to hear about the latest plans for the light rail extension from Moodie Drive to Hazeldean Road in Stittsville.

Paul Croft, a project planner from the engineering firm Parsons walked us through various options that they’ve considered for the light rail route, station locations, and storage and maintenance facilities.  Here’s a map of the new preferred route. Continue reading


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COMMENT: A tale of two traffic lights

#1 Carp at Hazeldean. Residents have been calling for safety fixes at this intersection for years.  City staff says that traffic isn’t heavy enough to justify any configuration changes. Of course, the city’s data doesn’t capture the frustration and near misses that happen all the time at the intersection. A real fix probably won’t come until sometime between 2020-2025, when Carp Road is tentatively scheduled to be widened to four lanes – if there’s money available. Continue reading


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NOTEBOOK: Preferred route for light rail extends to Hazeldean

The City of Ottawa is holding an open house on Thursday, December 7 as part of the Environmental Assessment for the light rail extension to Kanata-Stittsville.

There’s a significant change in plans from the last open house held in June: An updated map of the potential LRT extension to Stittsville shows the end of the line at Hazeldean Road, instead of Canadian Tire Centre. Continue reading


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DIRT OFF YOUR SHOULDER: Carp Road shoulder paving starts Friday

(via Stittsville councillor Shad Qadri)

I am pleased to share that the City will be paving the shoulders on Carp Road from Kittiwake Drive to Westbrook as of tomorrow, November 17th. This is a project that has been greatly anticipated by residents for some time. Originally, the shoulder-paving project was only planned from Rothbourne to Westbrook but working with the City, I was able to extend the project to start at Kittiwake as the shoulder was needed to be done in this section as well.   Continue reading


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COMMENT: The “creative activism” behind the Rosehill Expressway launch

(PHOTO: Unveiling the Rosehill Expressway sign. Photo by C.W.)

A huge thank you to my neighbours in Bryanston Gate, Fairwinds and Poole Creek Village for helping to open the Rosehill Expressway on Sunday afternoon.

The event was a tongue-in-cheek “celebration” to bring attention to traffic safety issues in our community.  You could call it a piece of “creative activism”.   Continue reading


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CBC: Residents throw ‘Rosehill Expressway’ party to protest spike in traffic

From CBC Ottawa:

Some Stittsville residents are protesting the impending closure of what’s become a main thoroughfare in the west Ottawa community — by throwing a party.

The “Rosehill Expressway” party is set for Sunday afternoon, a tongue-in-cheek attempt to draw attention to what residents say will be a surge in traffic on Rosehill Avenue, when the city closes a portion of nearby Johnwoods Street later this week.

“We’re worried that we’re going to have cars speeding down a long, wide street with no stop signs,” said Carol Lenz, the president of the Bryanston Gate Community Association.

“We want people to know the ‘Rosehill Expressway’ is coming, and we want to make sure that doesn’t happen. We want to have safety measures in place first.”

Read the full story…

 


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COMMENT: Johnwoods closure comes too soon

Closing Johnwoods might make sense years from now when more of Stittsville’s planned road and transit infrastructure is in place, but it doesn’t make sense now.

I made this video in May 2016 ahead of a public information meeting hosted by the City to explain what’s going on.  Watch this: Continue reading


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North section of Johnwoods permanently closes on November 15

Councillor Shad Qadri shared an update about the closure of the north end of Johnwoods on his web site earlier today.   The plan is to turn that section of road into a linear park with a recreation path running north-south, and re-route traffic via Rosehill and Santolina to-and-from Maple Grove.

Here’s how the City explains it: “This work must be completed to satisfy a condition in Mattamy Homes’ Fairwinds West subdivision agreement. The idea to downgrade Johnwoods Street from a major road to a local street has long been supported in several Council-approved documents like the Official Plan, Transportation Master Plan, Kanata West Concept Plan, Cycling Plan, and Pedestrian Plan.
Historically, Johnwoods Street has experienced issues with cut-through traffic as population growth has outpaced the development of the arterial road network in the community. The construction of the Huntmar Drive extension and the Hazeldean Road widening have helped to alleviate some of these concerns. The partial closure of Johnwoods Street will further improve the situation.”

Despite all those council-approved documents, news of the closure will likely surprise many residents in the area, particularly in the Bryanston Gate and Fairwinds neighbourhoods.  It was a surprise to many of the 100 people who showed up at a raucous meeting in May 2016, after which the City of Ottawa’s planning department apologized for poor communication about the project.

Here’s what’s happening in the next few weeks:

  • Starting around November 8, concrete barriers at Rosehill near Warmstone will be removed, and temporary traffic calming measures will be installed. (Just what those measures are hasn’t been revealed.) Then on November 15, Johnwoods will be closed for construction. Removable bollards and barriers will be in place to stop vehicle traffic.
  • The park will be landscaped with a 3-metre asphalt path, four new benches, post and rail wood fences at the Maple Grove and Rosehill entrances, and small trees and shrubs.  The existing street lights along Johnwoods will be retained for park lighting. A letter to residents says that a future pathway could be built by the City to connect to Bryanston Gate via the pumping station property on Mika.
  • The closure will also result in a change for the 162 bus route.  They’ll travel along Santonlina beween Maple Grove Street and Rosehill Avenue, with two new bus stops on Santolina Street, one close to 151 Santolina Street and the other behind 346 Astelia Crescent.

***

Here’s the update from the councillor’s web site:

Starting on Wednesday, November 15, 2017, Johnwoods Street will be permanently closed to vehicular traffic from Maple Grove Road to Rosehill Avenue and will be rebuilt as a multi-use pathway for pedestrians and cyclists.

This work will add a safe and accessible recreational amenity, more greenspace and direct connections for pedestrians and cyclists in your community. The pathway will also enhance privacy and livability for nearby residents by reducing vehicle traffic noise and headlight glare.

I encourage residents to please review the following documents which have also been mailed to residents in the immediate area.

Johnwoods Closure Notice 2017

Johnwoods Closure Frequently Asked Questions 2017 

Johnwoods Linear Park Design


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Yield when you see a green light coming your way

(press release via City of Ottawa)

The City of Ottawa would like to remind motorists that vehicles with green flashing lights are being driven by volunteer firefighters who are responding to a call. As a courtesy, all road users are asked to allow these vehicles to pass quickly and safely.

Ottawa’s rural communities are served by 470 volunteer firefighters. Through the Green Light program, volunteer firefighters are equipped with green flashing lights for their personal vehicles. When you see a green light flashing from a driver’s vehicle, it means the driver is a volunteer firefighter responding to an emergency. Continue reading


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Stittsville company’s invention deployed in downtown bike safety pilot

(An invention from Stittsville’s SmartCone Technologies is being deployed as part of a pilot project on O’Connor street in downtown Ottawa. Here’s a press release from Ottawa Police Services about the project.)

Safer Roads Ottawa and the Ottawa Police Service have launched a new cyclist detection system on the O’Connor bike lanes at the corner of Waverley.

Safer Roads Ottawa engaged with SmartCone Technologies Incorporated, a local start-up company in Stittsville, to implement their innovative prototype sensor technology on O’Connor Street.  Continue reading


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NOTEBOOK: Carp-Hazeldean collision stats, 2011-2015

(ABOVE: Collision at Carp and Hazeldean on September 25, 2017. Photo via Wendy Wright / @wrightofwayCFRA)

Stittsville Councillor Shad Qadri says he’s asked the city’s traffic department to review resident concerns about the Carp-Hazeldean intersection.  But if you read between the lines, it doesn’t look like this intersection is dangerous enough to warrant any immediate changes.

In his weekly newsletter published on Thursday, Qadri shared the most recent collision data available from 2015.  The Carp-Hazeldean intersection had 10 reported collisions, ranking it 167th on the list of intersections with the most reported incidents. (By comparison, the intersection of Hunt Club and Riverside was the worst in the city with 60 collisions.) Continue reading


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NOTEBOOK: Sidewalk coming to West Ridge from Adamson to Birchland

It’s great to read that city staff will be installing a sidewalk along West Ridge Drive between Adamson and Birchland.  It’s a one-block stretch of road adjacent to a park that happens to be the only segment of that part of West Ridge without a sidewalk.  Not sure planners missed that one, but good see it’s being fixed.

The new sidewalk will run along the west side of West Ridge from Adamson to the Westridge-Birchland park. Via Google Maps.
The new sidewalk will run along the west side of West Ridge from Adamson to the Westridge-Birchland park. Via Google Maps.

Continue reading


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COMMENT: Fix the Carp-Hazeldean intersection

(ABOVE: Photo via Wendy Wright / @wrightofwayCFRA)

Yet another collision at the intersection of Carp Road and Hazeldean Road, and residents are again calling for safety fixes at the intersection.

Is there any reason to believe the City will respond any differently this time?

Continue reading


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Updated list of road closures for 9RunRun on October 14

(via 9RunRun organizers)

We invite everyone to become part of our community’s 9RUNRUN. Cheer on runners as they run/walk by your home or place of business, sign up to volunteer at various stations or participate in one of the run/walk distances.

Now in its 8th year, having raised over $140, 000 in support of mental health programs in our community, the 9RunRun brings together runners, walkers, volunteers and spectators, through its partnership with the Ottawa Police, Paramedics and Fire Departments. Continue reading


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NOTEBOOK: Transportation Committee approves increase to parking time limit

It’s looking more likely that starting next June, you’ll be able to park on residential streets in Ottawa for more than three hours without worrying about getting a ticket.

Earlier today, the City of Ottawa’s Transportation Committee approved an increase to the maximum time for street parking on the weekends to six hours. Continue reading


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LINKED: Moodie LRT station won’t have park and ride because there’s no room

From the Ottawa Citizen:

West-end commuters won’t be able to ditch their cars at the future Moodie LRT station and ride the rails to downtown Ottawa.

There simply isn’t enough room near the station to build a park-and-ride facility, according to a report on the Stage 2 transit expansion.

Council had asked staff to see if a park and ride could be built at Moodie station, which will become one of the western terminuses of the Confederation Line LRT in 2023.

The report says a parking deck would likely be required because of the space constraints. The structure could become obsolete when the city extends LRT to Kanata in a future Stage 3. Plus, a parking facility would inappropriately encourage car traffic across the Greenbelt, the report says.


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OC Transpo fall service starts September 3, including Tanger Outlet changes

(via City of Ottawa)

Starting Sunday, September 3, OC Transpo will introduce new route numbers for several routes as part of getting Ready for Rail and the opening of the O-Train Confederation Line in 2018. Other fall service changes include adjusted schedules to reflect the higher demand for service as customers return to work and school.

Customers should visit octranspo.com and use the travel planner to see if their regular trips are affected. Continue reading


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LETTER: Cyclists belong on the road, not sidewalks

Re: NOTEBOOK: New bike repair station at Village Square Park

Further to your article regarding bicycle infrastructure safety.  I was travelling south on Stittsville Main the other day and a teenager was riding his bike on the sidewalk going in the same direction facing the traffic on the opposite side of the road.

An SUV was exiting Bradley’s Insurance and I guess she wasn`t expecting a bike coming from her right while she was looking at traffic coming from her left. The bicyclist did a quick turn out onto the roadway to avoid being hit.

Every day you see people riding their bikes on the sidewalk which I believe is illegal. I can see young children riding on the sidewalk on Stittsville Main, but not adults.

Someone is going to get killed or very badly injured. Perhaps we can be pro-active in telling people to obey the rules rather than spending a lot to time following up on something that is preventable. As an elder bike rider, I’ll take my chances on the road. At least drivers know they can expect a cyclist on the road.

Bob Johnson, Stittsville


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