COMMUNITY NOTES: from the desk of Councillor Gower

(Shea Woods in 2017. Photo: Stittsville Central)

Good news is being shared by Councillor Gower this week. The City of Ottawa and the CRT Developments (Claridge, Richcraft and Tamarack) reached an agreement to purchase five hectares of Shea Woods. This has been a long process read the details below. Also, three reminders are shared by the Councillor, as well as a number of upcoming events. Do you belong to the Stittsville Friendship Club? Find our more below and a list of their activities. A virtual day program is being offered by Ottawa-Carleton Lifeskills for adults with disabilities. The Mott MacDonald Report Independent Expert Review of the LRT Line 1 was released by the City details are below.

The city of Ottawa has plans to acquire a portion of Shea Woods, as shown here. Map via City of Ottawa.
(The city of Ottawa has purchased a portion of Shea Woods, as shown here. Map via City of Ottawa.)

City reaches agreement to acquire Shea Woods
City staff have reached an agreement to acquire approximately five hectares of Shea Woods. The forest will remain protected as part of a public park.

Shea Woods is located east of Shea between Abbott and the future Cope Road. The cedar forest has become a popular spot for dog walkers over the past decade. This agreement is a long time coming, and took some dogged determination by City staff to finalize.

Wasn’t this acquisition already announced several years ago?
An agreement was first reached in 2017 between the City and CRT to purchase the land, but fell apart shortly before I took office in 2018 due to problems obtaining usage rights in the hydro corridor. The original agreement lapsed, so a new agreement and purchase price had to be negotiated.

What is the current agreement?
The area that the City will acquire is 5.061 hectares (12.506 acres), valued at $700,000 per acre. The landowner, CRT, will convey about half of the land to the City at no cost as a condition of approval for Phase 3 of their Westwood Plan of Subdivision.  The City will purchase the remaining portion for just over $3-million.

The intention is to maintain the cedar forest and create an off-leash dog park. Shea Woods is an important recreation and natural area for our community. I look forward to working with residents to ensure that this forest remains healthy and cared for in the years to come.

A reminder for people who are walking their dogs in the forest:
Please pick up after your pet and bring the waste home with you for disposal. Also, please do not use the parking lot at Holy Spirit Parish on Sunday mornings to ensure the safety of churchgoers.

A report will come to the City’s Finance and Economic Development Committee (FEDCO) on May 3 and to City Council on May 10 for approval. You can find more info here…

Alexander Grove Park / Photo by Barry Gray
(City asks residents to stay off of sports fields as they remain wet due to Spring thaw. Ball diamonds could open May 7.)

Three quick reminders –

1. Dog waste can go in your green bin. Keep your bags of dog waste out of the landfill by putting it in your compost bin – bag and all.
2. Slow down on our roads:
Please obey posted speed limits, and come to a full stop at all stop signs.
3. Stay off sports fields.
Due to seasonal weather conditions, the fields are extremely wet and could be damaged if used while in their current condition.Weather permitting, ball diamonds will open on Saturday, May 7, and sports fields will open on Sunday, May 15.

Upcoming Events –

May 7: Jane’s Walk on Stittsville Main (*Registration required)
A walking tour of Stittsville Main, with a glimpse at how Stittsville has transformed over the past 150 years from a small railway village to a rapidly-growing suburban community in Ottawa. We’ll focus on the future of the street, with a preview of shops and services coming soon as well as plans to improve the street for cyclists and pedestrians. Jane’s Walkis a festival of free neighbourhood walking tours that help put people in touch with their city, the things that happen around them, the built environment, the natural environment, and especially with each other. Registration is required. Click here for details…

May 7: Labyrinth Peace Walk for Ukraine From 1:00pm-4:00pm at W.J. Bell Rotary Peace Park Labyrinth (1751 Main Street South). You are invited to W.J. Bell Rotary Peace Park labyrinth to walk/meditate for peace in Ukraine and throughout the world. Ruth Richardson, trained Veriditas Labyrinth Facilitator will be present to guild the walk.  Consider bringing a lawn chair if you wish to sit before, during and after the walk.  All are welcome including accompanied and supervised children. Anyone wishing to make a donation to support the humanitarian relief efforts for Ukraine can do so at www.shelterboxcanada.org. Commemorative Bricks on the walkway leading to the labyrinth are also available by contacting rookedave403@gmail.com or www.stittsvillerotary.com.

May 15: Stittsville Family Bike Ride
Come join me and my team on May 15th for a Family Bike Ride through Stittsville. Make new connections with our community, exercise and appreciate a moment of leisure while enjoying nature. Cyclists of all ages are welcome! The ride is 2.8km, travelling from CARDELREC to Village Square Park and back. Details & registration here…

May 21: Planting Day at Lee Boltwood Park The Stittsville-Goulbourn Horticultural Society is embarking on a 3-year project to develop pollinator gardens for our community to enjoy at the park, located on Abbott Street East. They would appreciate donations of plants and volunteers to help with their first planting day.  They are looking for plant donations as well as helpers on May 21. Contact  sghorticultural@gmail.com, if you can help with donations or volunteering.

Stittsville Friendship Club –
The club provides social activities for older adults (50+) and seniors (65+) to encourage interaction within the community. Because of the COVID restrictions, at the moment, they are offering limited activities and hope that we will resume all activities by September. Current activities include

  • Bridge all year round from 12:00 till 15:30 every Friday at the Johnny Leroux Community Centre
  • Shuffleboard every Tuesday afternoon from 14:00 to 16:00 at the Johnny Leroux Community Centre, the season ends May the 10th but will resume in September.
  • Exercise classes through Zoom
  • Euchre every Tuesday from 13:00 to 16:00 at the Legion in Stittsville

Membership is $15.00 for the year and when they resume full activities, there will be trips, luncheons, etc. They’re also looking for volunteers to join their executive. More info: www.stittsville-friendship-club.com or contact admin@stittsville-friendship-club.com to sign up for their newsletter.

Thanks are in order –
1. The Rotary Club of Ottawa-Stittsville made a donation to the Stittsville Food Bank during the Rotary Week of Service. Rotary Clubs in the Ottawa area and in the whole district were encouraged, during the last week of April,  to make a donation to either a Food Bank or an organization that provides/prepares meals for their community. The Ottawa Area clubs (~11 clubs) are planning on donating more than $10,000 and the total donations from the whole  District (~65 clubs) will amount to more than $60,000.
2. Thanks to Seckin Ergun for inviting me to last week’s Ramadan Iftar Dinner, hosted by the International Dialogue Institute and supported by Ottawa Police.
3. On Wednesday evening I dropped by to say hello to the 11th Stittsville Brownies and thank them for taking part in Cleaning the Capital. They helped clean up around CARDELREC on a very chilly evening.
4. A dedicated group of neighbours helped to tidy up at Bryanston Gate Park on Saturday morning. Thank you for keeping our community clean!
5. Thanks to Jamie and neighbours in Jackson Trails for organizing the clean-up at Pioneer Plains Park! (Also great to see the splash pad repairs finally underway!)

Ottawa-Carleton Lifeskills (OCL) – Virtual Day Program –
OCL is a non-profit organization that supports adults with developmental and physical disabilities to live an independent and inclusive life in their community. OCL has launched a virtual day program that offers adults with disabilities an opportunity to engage, learn and take part in innovative classes and activities online -anywhere, anytime. They offer morning and afternoon sessions that provide a virtual platform for people to connect, learn and build friendships with one another. OCL is offering free classes for the entire month of May.  To register, visit: https://www.ocl.ca/virtual-day-program/

(Ottawa LRT Line 1 vehicle. Photo: City of Ottawa)

City releases Mott MacDonald Report – Independent Expert Review of LRT Line 1 –
The City of Ottawa has released the Mott MacDonald Report, an independent expert review into LRT Line 1 infrastructure and vehicles.  The report is available on the City’s Public Disclosure Page.

The report summarizes the firm’s findings, and includes a number of recommendations to improve the sustainability and reliability of the system, which will ultimately benefit transit customers. The recommendations include specific infrastructure and vehicle improvements to enhance the customer experience and make it viable for the long-term. More info…

Get in touch!
My team and I are working every day to answer your questions and connect residents with the resources they need. If we can help in any way, please email me at glen.gower@ottawa.ca or leave a voicemail at 613-580-2476.You can also message us on WhatsApp at 613-277-0193. – Councillor Glen Gower


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