FAIRWINDS MERCHANTS PLAN BBQ FUNDRAISER FOR FORT MCMURRAY
On Thursday, May 26 at noon, Food Basics, Dollar Tree and The Grounds Café will be hosting a free BBQ. Food Basics will provide the burgers and hot dogs, Dollar Tree will provide condiments, plates, cutlery and cups and The Grounds will serve coffee.
Everything’s free but donations are encouraged to make a donation to the Red Cross in support of relief for victims of the Fort McMurray fire.
Patrick Caicco from The Grounds says that they’ve already raised $250 in donations from their in-house donation cup. More info here…
WE’RE NUMBER ONE
At their Committee of the Whole meeting this week, public school board trustees agreed to put a Stittsville high school at #1 on their capital budget priority list.
That top ranking is mostly symbolic, because the provincial Ministry of Education gets final say in what projects they choose to fund. They don’t necessarily follow the board’s rankings.
The Stittsville public high school has been on the board’s priority list for about a decade. Last year it was ranked #2, but lower-ranked projects received approval instead. The year before that it was ranked at #4. I’m not holding my breath this time.
Trustees will vote on whether or not to approve the list next Tuesday, May 24, and a number of parents are planning to attend the meeting to show their support. More info here…
REPORT SAYS CITY IS “SECRETLY” FAST TRACKING LIGHT RAIL TO KANATA
A couple weeks back we published a story about Kanata businesses asking the city to accelerate the timeline for extending light rail past Bayshore.
Ken Gray has a report in the Bulldog saying that west end politicians are actively working behind the scenes as well:
Kanata-Carleton MP Karen McCrimmon says west-end politicians are planning together to bring light rail to the western suburbs at least to Moodie Drive from Bayshore in 10 years or less. McCrimmon would like the environmental assessment (the intricate planning of the line) to begin right away. The federal government has infrastructure money for that at present. Current city plans call for light rail to arrive in Kanata by 2031.
Planning is unlikely to move forward until the next city budget cycle begins, she said. The estimated cost for the line from Moodie to Bayshore is about $300 million. Much more money will be required to get the line to Kanata.
An informal group that includes McCrimmon, Kanata South Councillor Allan Hubley, Kanata North Councillor Marianne Wilkinson, Mayor Jim Watson and some members of city staff are working on the project. McCrimmon believes the federal government will be on board and Ottawa West-Nepean MPP and Energy Minister Bob Chiarelli told McCrimmon that light rail is a priority for the Wynne government.
TREE PLANTING IN THE KEMP WOODLAND
Earlier this month Sacred Heart students planted 70 native conifers in the Kemp Woodland. The trees were planted in clearings left by dying Ash trees, and will support forest regeneration and add biodiversity to the natural area.
Sacred Heart is involved in a long-term stewardship partnership to help care for the forest.
POLICE STILL SEARCHING FOR HIT-AND-RUN MOTORCYCLIST
As of Friday, Ottawa Police say they still haven’t found the motorcycle driver involved in a collision at Abbott and Stittsville Main on the night of May 6. Witnesses say that after the motorcycle hit a car in the intersection, the driver grabbed the license plate and fled the scene on another bike.
THE GREAT FIRE OF 1870
John Curry has a good piece in this week’s Stittsville News about the Great Fire of 1870 that swept through our area, and parallels to the Fort McMurray disaster:
The devastation and mass evacuation involving Fort McMurray in Alberta has shown how unseasonably hot temperatures, dry conditions and high winds can provide the conditions for a raging, uncontrollable wildfire.
That a wildfire could force 90,000 to evacuate Alberta’s fifth largest city while destroying 2,400 buildings in the city is testament to the destructive power of such a natural happening. And this has happened despite today’s modern resources such as trained firefighters and firefighting equipment such as fire trucks and water-bombing helicopters.
This helps, perhaps, to put into perspective how the Carleton County Fire of August, 1870, could have devastated much of what was then Carleton County and even threatened Ottawa for a time, laying waste to everything in its path as it rapidly swept across the area.
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