Faircrest Heights Community Association

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Updates on local matters.

LOCAL EVENTS

Alta Vista Market is running Saturdays from 9 am to 1 pm at St Thomas the Apostle, 2345 Alta Vista Drive

To note - Rain Ready Ottawa, from the City of Ottawa’s Climate Change Resiliency Unit will be on hand to help you learn about how we can prepare better for extreme weather events.

The market will run every Saturday until October 7.

Innovations for Seniors, Windsor Park, Wednesday August 23 starting at 6:30 pm

Senior Watch Old Ottawa South (SWOOS) is inviting residents from Old Ottawa South and surrounding neighbourhoods to hear plans for the Senior’s Health Innovations Hub (SHIH) for central Ottawa. Experts will be on hand to answer questions related to aging in our communities.

Phoenix Big Band is pushing back the date of its 2nd annual charity event for the Heron Food Bank to Saturday September 23 2-5 pm, 411 Billings Avenue

Please put this enjoyable and worthwhile event taking place right in Faircrest Heights in your calendar.

Ward 18 Temporary Traffic Calming Meeting for Alta Vista and Faircrest Heights, October 5 from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm (virtual)

For more details go to https://martycarrottawa.ca/ward-18-temporary-traffic-calming-consultations/

PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Proposed Development at Ottawa General Hospital Riverside Drive Campus

A notice of approval for the site plan to create a seniors care community consisting of a Long Term Care Home (256 beds) and a 15 storey registered retirement home (270 beds) and shared amenity space has been approved. It is not known yet when construction will commence.

NEIGHBOURHOOD WELLNESS & SAFETY

A gentle reminder to lock and keep any valuables out of sight in your cars and to safely store your bikes.

Repairs to sidewalk at Smyth Road and Alta Vista Drive

As part of the City of Ottawa’s annual infrastructure maintenance cycle repairs will be made to certain earmarked sidewalks as preventative maintenance aimed at extending the City’s sidewalk network lifecycle. This work is expected to occur in the late August to October timeframe. The road will remain open to traffic with lane closures expected. Traffic control personnel will direct traffic through the site.

COUNCILLOR MARTY CARR

Councillor Carr can be reached at marty.carr@ottawa.ca. Sara Falkowsky at Sarah.falkowsky@ottawa.ca is her point of contact on community issues.

The Councillor’s weekly e-newsletter and Facebook Page are good sources of information. If you would like to be added to the newsletter mailing list, send an email to either Marty or Sarah.

Wishing all a lovely end of summer.

Judy Korecky,
President – Faircrest Heights Community Association


(Ottawa) – March is Fraud Prevention Month and the Ottawa Police Service (OPS) wants to equip residents with information on how to avoid some common scams.

 “We have been seeing a significant increase in grandparent schemes in the Ottawa area, where the person identifies themselves as a family member in crisis and asks for immediate financial help, typically in the form of cash for bail or lawyer fees,” said Fraud Unit Staff Sergeant Cameron Graham. “It’s important to educate yourself on some of these more common scams to avoid falling victim.”

 According to our partners at the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre (CAFC), it received reports of $530 million in victim losses last year. This was nearly a 40 percent increase from 2021, where 75 percent of those reports were tied to cybercrime. The CAFC estimates that only between 5 and 10 percent of victims report fraud-related incidents.

 Over the next month, the OPS will share some common scams and how to counter them on our social media channels (@OttawaPolice on Twitter, @ottawapolice on Instagram, and OttawaPoliceService on Facebook). Watch your social media feeds for helpful information.

 “It’s important that adult children look after parents who are not comfortable with how computers work,” said S/Sgt. Graham. “A lot of these scams target the elderly online.”

 Common frauds include: Investment scams, spear phishing, and phishing scams. You can read more about types of frauds and how to avoid them by visiting the CAFC website.

Cst Brad Burleau  #1835
Ottawa Police Service
Community Safety Services
613-236-1222  ext 8591
burleaub@ottawapolice.ca

 Make The Right Call:
Life-threatening emergency or crime in progress: 9-1-1
Telephone report: 613-236-1222  ext. 7300
Online Reporting: : http://bit.ly/1rHsIT1 [bit.ly]


FHCA UPDATE: Winter 2023

LOCAL CONSTRUCTION MATTERS

Hydro Ottawa Policy Replacement Project in Faircrest Heights (February 27-April 7 2023)

Hydro Ottawa will be replacing hydro poles on Heath Street, Balmoral Place, Norwood Avenue, Logan Avenue, Roger Road and Alta Vista Drive with the longer term goal to prevent larger and longer unplanned outages from occurring in the future. Customers will receive a written notice advising them of these updates and notice informing them of any interruption to their power supply. We can also expect increased construction vehicle presence. Specific questions can be sent to Peter Mierzwa, System Designer, at 613-223-7154 or via email at cr@hydroottawa.com.

Tree Trimming and Power Outage in Faircrest Heights (March 2 2023)

Hydro Ottawa and Asplundh will be completing tree trimming work on Smyth Road, Simpson Road, Highland Terrace, Roger Road, Highridge Avenue and South Haven Place on Thursday March 2, 2023 to prevent trees and branches from coming into contact with overhead power lines. Planned power outage will be between 8:00 am to 2:00 pm and is anticipated to impact some 50 customers. Specific questions can be sent to Greg Tipman, at 613-738-5499 ext. 7358 or via email at cr@hydroottawa.com.

VACANT UNIT TAX

Reminder that all owners of residential property in Ottawa must complete a declaration of occupancy for each of their properties every year. This declaration must be completed by March 16 2023 on My.Service.Ottawa.ca or at Ottawa.ca/VUT or the property will be deemed vacant and a tax of 1% of the assessed value of the property will be charged. If you have not yet received a letter contact the City by email at VUT_ILF@Ottawa.ca or call Revenue Services at 613-580-2444.

PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT

Proposed Development at CHEO Smyth Road Campus

The Ottawa General Hospital is planning a number of upgrades to the current campus on Smyth Road. Phase 1A comprises a 7 storey parking garage for 1050 spaces to be built over an existing outdoor parking lot at the Hospital Ring Road and the entrance to the General Hospital. This parking garage replaces loss of spaces and also provide additional spaces for CHEO’s future growth. A decorative architectural screen is being planned for the façade facing the Ring Road, to reduce the visual impact of the structure and to give it more architectural interest and curb appeal. Phase 1B comprises a proposed new 20, 000 square foot “1Door4Care” public-private establishment will be built over a separate existing parking lot at the Hospital Ring Road and the entrance to the Children’s Hospital. This two part project is separate and apart from a proposed Ronald McDonald House expansion to build a 3 storey addition to provide for an additional 22 guest suites.

Proposed Development at Ottawa General Hospital Riverside Drive Campus

An updated site plan and documents have been filed with the City to develop this property to create a seniors care community consisting of a Long Term Care Home (256 beds) and a 15 storey registered retirement home (270 beds) and shared amenity space in the second phase.

Re-Zoning Exercise

On Jan. 31, 2023, the City’s Planning and Housing Committee approved revised timelines for the comprehensive re-zoning process. The re-zoning process will be lengthy, with the first draft of revised by-laws to be published in the first quarter of 2024. The final product will not be completed until the fourth quarter of 2025. The first step will be the release of seven Zoning Discussion Papers for public comment in late 2023. The Discussion Papers focus on key policy directions in the already approved Official Plan that must be implemented in the Zoning By-law: Climate Change, Resiliency and Public Health; Equity, Diversity and Inclusion; Land Use; Neighbourhood Zoning; Neighbourhood Character; Trees and Rural Zoning Issues. These papers will underpin the policy framework around the new zoning. We will share a copy of the Papers once released.

Information Session on Provincial Bills 109 and 23 and impact on future development in Ottawa

On March 7th at 6:30 pm City of Ottawa Planning Department is hosting an online information session on the impacts of these provincial bills on the City’ new Official Plan and other planning matters. If interested, you may register for this event at https://engage.ottawa.ca/provincial-legislation-planning/news_feed/march-7th-public-information-session

NEIGHBOURHOOD SAFETY

There continue to be a number of car break ins in the ward, and while Faircrest Heights seems to see less than most parts of the ward, there was a recent attempted break in on Briar Avenue. Please remember to lock your cars and to not keep an valuables in sight. Canterbury Community Association is hosting a Town Hall on Safety matters on Tuesday February 28, 2023 from 7-9 pm (2815 Arch Street, Hall B) and the Ottawa Policy Service will be on hand to discuss crime and public safety in the ward in the event you would like to be further apprised of ward safety issues.

COUNCILLOR MARTY CARR

Councillor Carr is staffing up her office and can be reached at marty.carr@ottawa.ca. Sara Falkowsky at Sarah.falkowsky@ottawa.ca is her point of contact on community issues.
The Councillor’s weekly e-newsletter is a good source of information. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, send an email to either Marty or Sarah.Given the delayed release of the Zoning Policy Papers until late March we will have a virtual FHCA meeting in spring 2023.

Wishing all a good end to winter.
Judy Korecky
President – Faircrest Heights Community Association


New Councillor Marty Carr

Councillor Marty Carr is in the process of reaching out to key contacts within the Ward, at the City, and other groups to get up to speed on files. During a recent meeting with me as President of FHCA, we discussed the Riverside hospital development (height and massing, impact on parking and the need to maintain a bike path), the impacts of Bill 23 (More Houses Built Faster Act) and the approved Official Plan, the upcoming zoning exercise, among other issues. FHCA will continue to engage with the Councillor on an ongoing basis.

Councillor Carr is staffing up her office and can be reached at marty.carr@ottawa.ca. Sara Falkowsky at sarah.falkowsky@ottawa.ca is her point of contact on community issues.

The Councillor’s e-newsletter is being revamped and will be set up by early January. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, send an email to either Marty or Sarah.

You can meet Marty and neighbours this Saturday 10 am to 1 pm at the Jim Tubman Chevrolet Rink at Canterbury Park for a Holiday Skate in support of the Blair Court Community Food Bank (Stand Claus Visit, Skating, Camp Fire, Hot Chocolate, Gift Bags, Photos). Please bring a non-perishable donation.

Bill 23/ More Houses Faster Act

As you may be aware this Bill was rushed through provincial Parliament and approved on November 28 2022 despite a large number of concerns, with the exception of the development community, from all other key stakeholders, including municipal planning departments, municipalities, environmental groups, housing groups, heritage groups, residents, and most recently Parks Canada.

The City of Ottawa Treasurer has warned Council of the financial implications of this Act that will likely have to be born in large part by residents through higher taxes and diminished services.

FHCA is following this Bill/Act closely and made a joint submission with the Alta Vista Community Association to the Standing Committee studying the Bill (click here to read submission). FHCA and AVCA have written an article on the Bill that can be found in the latest issue of Vistas (Pages 1, 14 and 15). We will continue to closely follow the implementation of this bill that will among other things, speed up the City of Ottawa zoning review process as relevant bylaw provisions related to this Bill must be implemented within one year.

Vacant Unit Tax

Most of you should have received a letter on this new tax. All owners of residential property in Ottawa must complete a declaration of occupancy for each of their properties every year. This declaration must be completed between January 1 and March 16 2023 on My.Service.Ottawa.ca or at Ottawa.ca/VUT or the property will be deemed vacant and a tax of 1% of the assessed value of the property will be charged. If you have not yet received a letter contact the City by email at VUT_ILF@Ottawa.ca or call Revenue Services at 613-580-2444.

Neighbourhood Safety

There continue to be a number of car break ins in the ward. Please remember to lock your cars and to not keep any valuables in sight.

The safety upgrades at Billings Avenue and Lynda Lane are advancing and are scheduled to be completed by Christmas. There is new signage and a cross walk with lights for pedestrians and cyclists crossing Lynda Lane as well as a better bike connection between the bike path through the field and the bike path on the west side of Lynda Lane south of Billings Avenue.

Faircrest Heights Community Association

This has been a busy fall with the election events and various planning issues. As a recap FHCA was involved in three municipal events (Meet the Ward Candidates, Ward Candidate Debate (Debate Questions Committee) and the Mayoral Candidates Debate (Debate Questions Committee). On the planning front there was continued engagement on a number of issues including those referenced above as well as the Riverside Hospital Development, and submissions were made to the Committee of Adjustment regarding minor variances on the severance at Alta Vista/Crestview and on the re-development at 2055 Riverside Drive at Pleasant Park (to seek to address safety issues for residents driving and cycling down Pleasant Park).

Thanks to those residents who have stepped forward to pitch in with FHCA: Tom Saikaly, Ken Kary and Nina Dekker.

We had planned to have a FHCA virtual meeting after the new Council was in place, the approval of the new Official Plan (November 4th) and the release of the City of Ottawa Zoning Policy Papers (that were to closely follow Official Plan approval). However, as the release of these policy papers have now postponed to January to incorporate the new More Houses Built Faster Act we instead have a virtual FHCA meeting in early 2023.


COYOTE SIGHTING

A coyote was spotted this week on Highridge near Billing Park, so sharing a few facts to remember from the NCC:


PLANNING ISSUES

Proposed severance of a lot at the corner of the west side of Crestview and Alta Vista
 
An application is to be submitted in the coming days to the City for the proposed severance of 1992 Alta Vista Drive. Severances of corner lots on Alta Vista Drive are allowed if certain parameters are met. The proposed severance however seeks certain variances from the current rules including a considerable decrease in minimum lot width, in part to maintain the existing residence on Alta Vista Drive. A new house is proposed on the new severed lot that would be partially visible from Alta Vista Drive. The proposed house would be just under 11 meters in height (allowed by the bylaw) and have a single car garage and driveway. Close neighbours have received paper copies of the official Notifications (copies can be found here and here). This matter will be decided by Panel 2 the Committee of Adjustment (COFA) on October 5 2022.

Further details will be made public shortly on the City of Ottawa Committee of Adjustment website. If you have any commRients to share with the Committee of Adjustment(cofa@ottawa.ca) please cc our Councillor Marty Carr (marty.carr@ottawa.ca) and me (judy.korecky@hotmail.com) (so FHCA has a sense of residents’ views).
 
Riverside Hospital Development
 
Schlegel Villages has submitted an application to develop the north parking lot of the Riverside Hospital Campus. The current plan is to build three buildings (a retirement residence, a long care facility and a common area) one of which will be 8 storeys and the other 15 storeys. In addition to concerns about parking overflow into the community, loss of the biking trail through campus, some residents are expressing serious concerns with the 15 storey building that will result in loss of sun light and privacy for residents near the hospital, and could set a precedent for the neighbourhood. See the attached flyer for further details. If you have any comments to share with the City Planner Tracey Scaramozzino (Tracey.scaramozzino@ottawa.ca) please cc our Councillor Marty Carr (marty.carr@ottawa.ca)
and me (judy.korecky@hotmail.com) (so FHCA has a sense of residents’ views).


Faircrest Heights Executive Election
 
I am pleased to be your new Faircrest Heights Community Association President (by acclamation - as the only candidate who came forward). I look forward to engaging with you via email and on the streets of Faircrest Heights over the summer and learning about issues that matter to you and how best to represent the community. We will have a Community Association meeting in the fall (format and timing to be determined). In the meantime I will send updates and do feel free to reach out to me on community issues.

We are looking for at least one Vice President to step forward. Please consider doing so if you are interested!

Riverside Hospital Development Meeting
An upcoming event that may be of interest is a meeting next Monday evening June 13 on the proposed development in the parking lot of the Riverside Hospital hosted by our Councillor. Registration details are at the bottom of the email.

For awareness FCHA sent in a submission to the City on four points: expressing concerns about (1) the slashing of parking at the hospital in half and how this may lead to increasing parking on neighbouring streets, (2) height (one building is slated to be 8 storeys and the other 15 storeys), (3) asking for a generous buffer between the development and the community and (4) the need to maintain the ability to cycle safely through the hospital campus. RESIDENTS OF NORWOOD - I would suggest you follow this file closely as based on the shadow studies in the application it seems that some of your properties may to be in the afternoon shade of the proposed 15 storey building.

Judy Korecky, FHCA President


Planning Updates including new application adjacent to Faircrest Heights

As some of you are aware there are a number of large development applications and ongoing projects within a few minutes of Faircrest Heights.  The Trainyards high rises are beginning construction. A new residential tower is going up at Elmvale Acres Shopping Centre with more to follow (including an application to add a new tower on Othello) as well as several new residential high rises on the west side of St. Laurent (including the sites of the current gas station and St.Hubert as well as the Burger King). The Federal Study Centre on Heron is subject of an application for several new mid-rise buildings. Likewise there are plans for massive development at Confederation Heights (the lands to the west of Billings Bridge Plaza from the RA Centre to Heron Road). As well there is are applications to build two high rises (26 storey) on either side of the corner of Bank and Riverside as well as a high rise at 1400 Bank Street (Langdon Flowers across from Kilborn).

 It should therefor not come as a surprise that there is a new application that is now in the system that is adjacent to Faircrest Heights. A new development application was submitted late last week for two buildings in the north side parking lot at the Riverside Hospital. The proposal has been submitted on behalf of Schlegel Villages, who proposes the development of an 8 storey long-term care facility with 256 beds, a 15 storey retirement home with 270 suites and amenities as part of a village setting. The hospital and medical building will remain. The parking spots will go from 744 to 393. The development application is available through on the City of Ottawa’s Development Application . There are a number of attachments and so I would guide you to the Application Summary (last document). Comments can be sent directly via this application or via email to Tracey.Scaramozzino@ottawa.ca. If you do send an email please cc myself at judy.korecky@hotmail.com and if you would like our Councillor Marty Carr marty.carr@ottawa.ca.  This is just the beginning of this process that FHCA will follow closely and provide ongoing updates.

With respect to the Official Plan, the Ministry of Municipal Affairs and Housing did not approve Ottawa’s new Official Plan (along with other new plans). They may likely be tied to a recent provincial bill that amended the Ontario Planning Act that would go well beyond the new Official Plan. It is not yet clear how the next steps will unfold and how this will impact the upcoming City of Ottawa Zoning Review. We will continue to watch this closely. 

Alta Vista Farmers’ Market and Activities  

Sharing news of a great initiative from our sister Community Association (the Alta Vista Community Association (AVCA) who has organized an on-site Alta Vista Farmers’ Market that is set to open on Saturday, June 25th 9-1 and run on Saturday mornings at the Saint Thomas Church. There is also an online order option via www.altavistamarket.ca.

Next meeting

Stay tuned for the announcement of our new executive who will send out details of our next meeting and membership drive.   

 In the meantime do not hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions or comments with the above. 

Kindest regards,
Judy Korecky (President)


Challenge with creating '15 minute neighbourhoods' in built up areas .... see more


City of Ottawa Solid Waste Master Plan

https://engage.ottawa.ca/solid-waste-master-plan


One little house becomes four $1.2 million Units:

Egan: A little house, now four $1.2M units. What's cost to City View? | Ottawa Citizen


From Judy Korecky:

I would like to share with you some of the key highlights of the City of Ottawa Planning Department meetings on the Outer Urban Transect of June 23rd and the Inner Urban Transect of June 28th. As you may recall the majority of the Ward is now Outer Urban with Billings Bridge, Hurdman and Tremblay Stations and surrounding area being Inner Urban.
 
Meeting context:
Both meeting were attended by impacted Councillors, key staff from Planning Department, residents and special interest groups, with a total of around 100 people in attendance for the Outer Urban Meeting and 200 people in the Inner Urban Meeting.  The majority of the meeting reiterated the “What we Heard Report” as well as the “Ward Specific Reports” followed by a Q&A (links to these reports can be found in the email below). Thankfully participants were able to ask live questions (as opposed to previous meetings). 
 
Key takeaways impacting Faircrest Heights are: 
Confirmation that the vast majority of the ward will be outer urban (except around major transit hubs), that single family homes can be re-built, that there will be no density requirements, and that the timelines of Council consideration in mid-September have not changed
Active Transit –further to a large number of comments from the ward related to active transit, the ward will receive inner urban treatment in this respect and this will be embedded in our Secondary Plan. This will mean that pedestrians and cyclist will be given priority over motor vehicle access, no new curb cuts (so if a property is severed into two there can still only be one driveway (presumably shared) while this is positive in that it will protect greenery the corollary is that it may lead to more on street parking (although it was suggested that on street parking might be reduced). There was also some reference to inserting new paths into the existing block structure (how this would be achieved absent expropriation of private property is unclear). Sidewalks will be installed on existing streets as they are rehabilitated.
There is some chatter during the meetings (and in other discussions with the City) of “road diets”, for example consideration to narrowing Riverside around Bank Street to two lanes, and to narrowing Walkley to two lanes from Bank to Riverside
Speed limits may decrease on neighbourhood streets
Density the outer urban density targets [no longer requirements] are now to be 40 (not a minimum) to 60 (not a maximum) dwelling units per hectare (Faircrest Heights is currently around 10-20 units per hectare). This will be measured at the neighbourhood and possible street level and will not take into account density on hubs and corridors. There were a number of references that density is required to support retail, in particular decent sized  grocery stores (that many residents indicated they wanted in their neighbourhoods in the City of Ottawa’s 2020 15 minute neighbourhood survey).
Retail is being limited in our Secondary Plan to specific important intersections and this limiting of retail to key streets and intersections is mirrored in other wards
Tree Canopy sadly it was clear that the 40% applies across the City and not at the Ward level – how increased tree protections will be implemented remains to be seen, however the no new curb cut rule will protect some greenery, and may potentially protect some front yard trees
Height limits on corridors (closest to us Pleasant Park, Kilborn and South side of Smyth) will be low rise (so up to four storeys – although FHCA and AVCA had advocated for 3 storeys). Four stories tracks the treatment of corridors in other outer urban areas and corridors in certain inner urban neighbourhoods.
Zoning (which will occur in 2022 to 2024 after the Official Plan is approved) will flesh out many of the above matters. Officials stated that zoning will be at the street level and spoke to the need to provide more permissions across the City to create more housing options. You should be aware that this could possibly/likely translate to a shift from an R1 zoning (single family homes) to R2/R3 or R4 zoning depending on context (this could possibly include a single family home with a granny suite and a secondary dwelling unit/coach house in the back), to decreased lot size minimums and/or allow severances as of right in certain circumstances (613 flats that meet certain parameters). For broader context, there is a move in a number of different jurisdictions across North America to do away with R1 zoning, and to create more housing options in neighbourhoods. This shift to a more permissive planning framework has been implemented in different manners in different jurisdictions and has met with varying degrees of uptake. Of course, the devil will be in the details.
The City states that zoning will increase tree protections and there will be design guidelines to preserve the “character” and “streetscape of the neighbourhood”.
 
 
Question from FHCA: 
“We have noticed that infill housing is often twice as large and costs up to twice as much as existing housing stock (even if only occupying half the original lot) and that infill pricing will have knock on effects on the taxable rate of neighbouring houses. If the City is serious about creating more housing options that should be reasonably priced, can Planning Department point to any hooks in the draft Official Plan in this regard? FHCA also pointed out that some jurisdictions have addressed the concern of increasing housing prices by requiring that smaller lots have smaller housing envelopes.”  Planning Department was not able to respond with any examples of such hooks, however stated that indeed there are hooks in the Official Plan.
 
Next steps on the draft Official Plan

Official Plan

  • The “As We Heard It” Report was released this afternoon. There are a number of concerns with the first draft that have been addressed, notably:

• Alta Vista has shifted to Outer Urban!

 

• Minimum density requirements will only apply to Hubs and Mainstreets, leaving flexibility for Neighbourhoods and Minor Corridors to instead reach a target range.

 

• Single family homes can be rebuilt (not prohibited)

 

• Height limits will be revised on Mainstreets. Any applicable secondary plan that requires a lower height would also take precedence.   (The current draft of the applicable secondary plan would limit Smyth Road to low-rise (aka 4 storeys).

 

The full 28 page report can be found here: https://engage.ottawa.ca/the-new-official-plan/news_feed/the-new-official-plan-city-wide-interim-as-we-heard-it-report.  For those who would prefer an abridged version, attached find the 2 page key messages document that touches on the highlights of the report.

 

·  Draft Official Plan Timelines 

Here is what you can expect as the City moves forward on the New Official Plan. 

·  Ward Specific reports – released as they are completed in the coming weeks* AFTER THE RELEASE OF OUR WARD REPORT, WE WILL CALL A FHCA MEETING TO DISCUSS WHAT WE LIKE, DON’T LIKE AND NEXT STEPS

·  Public Transect Meeting on Outer Urban Area – June 23, at 7 pm. To register go to: https://www.eventbrite.ca/e/transect-outer-urbanapproche-du-transect-le-secteur-urbain-exterieur-tickets-158592427219

·  Full release of next iteration of the Draft OP – prior to mid-August (tentative) 

·  Public open house – No date set 

·  Joint Planning / ARAC committee – September 13, 14, 15 

·  Council – Fall 2021 

Smyth Road Cycling Improvements and Neighbourhood Bikeway Modifications Consultations

·  Online Engagement Opportunity from June 9 -23 (you can also phone in comments!)

Go to https://ottawa.ca/smythcyclingimprovements to see the design drawings. Of most import to FH is that the City is proposing unidirectional bike sharrows (street markings) and signage on Billings Road, a pedestrian crossover on Lynda Lane at Billings Road, and curb and sidewalk modifications on Rodney Crescent and Pleasant Park near the train tracks.

·  Online Meeting with City Project Team: Wednesday, June 16th at 6:30pm

Register for the consultation here: Meeting Registration - Zoom

 

 

Walkable Ottawa Alta Vista 15 Minute Neighbourhood Study

 

For those who participated in either of the Workshops of March 20 or March 27, the draft report has been circulated to participants for comments. Please contact me if you did not receive a copy of the draft. We have until Monday June14th to provide comments. I will share a version of the final report with this distribution once it is released.

 

New Official Plan - Interim As We Heard It Report


Click here for the FHCA submission on the draft of the Official Plan - March 12 2021


Follow-up to February 24 FHCA meeting on the draft Official Plan

1.       SHARING OF THE PRESENTATION

Some of you have asked if you could share the presentation with other AV neighbours.  Please do.  One thing that is important to note is that Alta Vista has been separated into Inner Urban (West of Lynda Lane, Grasshopper Hill and the Greenspace down to Heron), and Outer Urban (east of that line). 

 

Click here for the Presentation for the Zoom meeting

 

2.       WARD WIDE EVENT AND OPPORTUNITY FOR ENGAGEMENT WITH PLANNING DEPARTMENT

Attached find an email that contains the details about the March 2nd 2021 Jean Cloutier Ward Wide event on the draft Official Plan.  Apparently already over 200 people have signed up.

 

I have had confirmation that Alain Miguelez  the manager responsible for the draft OP will give a presentation and that a number of planners will be online to respond to questions.  ACTION ITEM: With that in mind, please let me know if there is still appetite to set up a meeting with Planning Department. If so, happy to do so. 

 

3.       CHAT AND ADDITIONAL ISSUES

I am attaching a copy of Wednesday evening’s chat. The comments will be fed into the FHCA presentation (including about the impacts of COVID, set backs, trees, including the comment of one resident supporting the density targets but that it should be in conjunction with increased services and transit). I have some responses/comments to questions posed:

 

Click here for chats from February 24 FHCA meeting on the draft Official Plan

 

Development near the rapid bus/rail lines at Smyth and Pleasant Park

The draft OP definition of rapid transit in the draft OP does not include bus rapid transit that is not fully grade separated.  Therefore,  it would appear/may be possible that the rapid transit station designation would not apply for the Smyth and Pleasant Park Stations. This needs to be confirmed.

The draft Secondary Plan states that regeneration on Corridors would remain low-rise (maximum 4 storeys).  The Secondary Plan trumps the Official Plan.

The Ottawa zoning bylaw is silent on development near rail lines.

The Ontario Planning Act has minimal reference and it appears that there is only interplay if the proposed development is within 300m of the rail line.

There is a push to have some standardized policies around building near rail lines: see https://www.proximityissues.ca/

 

Statistics

Thanks for additional data.  I will confirm re densities (my numbers came from an academic piece).

 

Online petition 

Historically the City views the petition as a single voice so experience has shown us that individual submissions carry much more wait.

 

Parking

The concerns about overspill from the hospital are noted.

Additional related items that I did not raise at the meeting that may be of interest:

Both Policy and Zoning have raised the notion of street parking permits to address cars that cannot park on properties.

No new curb cuts:  This was also not raised in the presentation however you should be aware that any severances or new builds can not create a new driveway.  (Draft OP 5.2.2.3)

 

Community Centres

This was noted as a recurring interest for residents – more community centers, smaller more local community centers. One useful suggestion was that there could be consideration for a Community Center on the DND lands. This is something to earmark at this point.

 

Maximum lot coverage

I have reviewed the current zoning bylaw – lot coverage is not addressed expressly written into the bylaw for the overwhelming majority of residential subzones. Alta Vista lots do not have lot coverage provisions.  Requesting maximum lot coverage provisions is another element for consideration in submissions to the City. 

 

Thanks for those who have already sent comments to the City and to Council members. I been CCed on some and they are very strong. Please keep them sending your comments up to the March 12th deadline and beyond.

 

Please send any direct emails to my Hotmail account Judy Korecky. I am only using this account now to ensure that the attachments reach all recipients.

 


Hydro Ottawa Tree Maintenance

Maintaining vegetation ensures the hydro corridor is safe for public use, keeps the lights on, and gives our crews access to the power lines for regular maintenance and emergency repairs.

Our work has now entered the execution phase. Our Forestry Technician is scheduled to return next week to begin to mark trees and vegetation for trimming or removal. Trees will be marked with blue to identify trimming, and orange to identify removal. 
 
Once the vegetation has been marked, our crews are anticipated to begin executing the work. To complete this work, our crews will use hand held equipment, such as pruners and chainsaws, and support vehicles, such as bucket trucks. Herbicides may be applied to certain cut stems to prevent re-growth. Hydro One will always seek property owner permission before applying herbicides.
 
Please note that originally Hydro One had identified the need to mechanically remove trees and other vegetation in the hydro corridor just south of Smyth Road, however, work in this section has been re-assessed. Our crew will manually remove and trim certain trees and other vegetation that will pose a risk to the electrical system.
 
If members of the Faircrest Heights Community Association have any questions, please do let me know.
 
Andreea Nicoara
Community Relations

Cell:         (416) 807-5318
Email:    
Andreea.Nicoara@HydroOne.com

 


When’s the last time you ordered take-out from a restaurant?

I haven’t personally used any of the sundry “services” which pick up and deliver your meal. Those of you who do often are charged a delivery fee but were you aware of the impact on the restaurants?

I wasn’t until last week when we decided to order some takeout, something we generally do once a week. It was from one of our favourite restaurants on Bank Street which provides not only great food but also great service.

Like most restaurants in Ottawa -- and in many other places -- it is limited to take-out. When I drove down to pick up our order, the place was understandably deserted. It fronts on the sidewalk and there is literally no room for a patio.

There was an Uber Eats driver ahead of me. The restaurant owner told me that in the 30 minutes or so which had elapsed since I called, he had had seven other orders, all to be picked up by Uber Eats.

When I said business seemed steady, he said he was considering shutting down, which took me aback. It seems that Uber Eats takes 30 per cent of the cost which, as anyone familiar with the hospitality trade, essentially leaves him profitless!

I knew there obviously had to be some additional cost associated with Uber Eats (and similar services) but feel that 30 per cent is, frankly, extortionate. 

So, the next time you opt for take-out and the restaurant, regardless of its ethnicity, is fairly close, a drive or bicycle trip could help to ensure that the place is still in business the next time you feel the urge.

 


INFORMATION FROM COUNCILLOR JEAN CLOUTIER

 As Ottawa Public Health and the City of Ottawa continue to move forward in our response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we are writing to provide greater clarity on a number of communications and ask for your support in sharing information with members of your community.

 It is important to recognize that the COVID-19 situation is evolving very quickly. Please refer to OttawaPublicHealth.ca/Coronavirus to stay up-to-date on the latest information. For information relevant to businesses and workplaces, please visit: https://www.ottawapublichealth.ca/workplacecovid19

Social Distancing

Ottawa Public Health is urging everyone to practice physical (social) distancing. More information on physical (social) distancing for you and your family can be found on our website.

The province of Ontario is ordering non-essential workplaces to close-down as of Tuesday March 24, 2020 at 11:59 p.m. Further details can be found on the OPH website for workplaces.

Our efforts are needed as a community. The actions you take will affect not only you but your loved ones and our community’s most vulnerable residents. While we appreciate that people are thinking of their loved ones, now is not the time to visit them in person. Luckily, we have technology on our side, which enables us to communicate in other creative ways like video chats and group phone calls.

Physical (social) distancing by all is IMPERATIVE to limit transmission in the community, to protect older adults, vulnerable populations and outbreaks in institutions. We must “flatten the curve” so we don’t see spikes in cases. This means that we want to slow down transmission of the virus and reduce the number of cases in the community that happen at the same time, so that our health system continues to work properly. Here are some ways that you and your family can practise physical (social) distancing:  

·         Take precautions to maintain distance in shared spaces in multi-unit dwellings;

·         Avoid crowded elevators (wait for an empty one if you can). 

·         Avoid using the mail room or laundry room at the same time as other residents (keep to a small number at a time to maintain distance).  

 Physical (social) distancing does not mean emotional distancing. Check in with others by phone or other technology. Check in with yourself. It’s ok not to be ok. Please know that help is available, and we encourage you to reach out to Distress Centre of Ottawa to connect with someone at 613-238-3311 if needed.

 Self-Isolation

Many people are returning home from March Break or winter travel and will need groceries and essential items. It is imperative that all returning travellers self-isolate for 14 days, so groceries and essential items should be picked up by a family member or friend, or through on-line ordering options. Visit our website for further guidance on self-isolation. We have been working with the Ottawa International Airport to ensure this is being communicated clearly to returning travellers.

You also need to self-isolate if you live with, provided care for, or spent extensive time with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, OR is suspected to have COVID-19, OR who has respiratory symptoms (fever, cough, or shortness of breath) that started within 14 days of travel outside of Canada.

 Human Needs Taskforce

Our community partners are working together through the City’s Human Needs Task Force for those requiring assistance.  The task force is receiving, assessing and triaging all social and human needs inquiries, while mobilizing and supporting community organizations to address urgent community needs. The Human Needs Task Force aligns internal city resources, external partners, existing funding and new funding to community need.

 Outreach to Isolated Seniors

The Good Companions’ Seniors Centre Without Walls has expanded its services with a focus on outreach to vulnerable and isolated seniors and other populations. Emotional and practical support is provided via telephone. In addition, they have trained 20 agencies (32 staff) to do similar outreach calls through various programs.

Rural Ottawa Support Services is working with Good Companions to provide similar telephone outreach and practical supports to isolated seniors through their A Friendly Voice program, which does wellness calls connecting seniors to local services and programs.

Ottawa Community Housing has facilitated wellness check phone calls to approximately 2,700 residents, focusing on people identified on the Fire Evacuation List.

 Food Security

Ottawa Food Bank is supporting the emergency food centres and are coordinating with other task force members to sort and deliver food where needed. Demand has increased by 30 per cent across community food banks. They are working with the Salvation Army to support distribution of food hampers offered by local restauranteurs. The City is providing facility space for safe storage of food hampers.

Meals on Wheels has been increasing offers of frozen food for seniors in the Ottawa area and connecting with Ottawa Food Bank to provide hamper supplies and deliveries. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, they are delivering 100 fresh and 700 frozen meals daily. These services have ensured a supply of full dinners for those individuals in need.

 Urgent Transportation

Working with other non-profit organizations, the Good Companions and Champlain Community Support Network are coordinating urgent transportation to medical appointments, assessment centres, and food centres/grocery stores for those with financial constraints, transportation difficulties, and/or health and mobility issues.

Services can be accessed by contacting Good Companions website or by telephone at 613-236-0428.

 Volunteer Coordination

The City and United Way of Eastern Ontario are developing a plan to support volunteer coordination during the COVID-19 pandemic. Volunteer Ottawa has established a pool of pre-screened volunteers and will continue to accept new applicants.

  Stay Updated

Information is changing rapidly and Ottawa Public Health is working around the clock to provide information to the public as soon as possible.

Please share this information and receive the latest updates by:

-          Visiting OttawaPublicHealth.ca/Coronavirus frequently

-          Follow us on Twitter: twitter.com/ottawahealth

-          Like us on Facebook: facebook.com/ottawahealth

 

Reduce the spread of germs including the flu and COVID-19

·          Wash your hands often with soap and water, or use hand sanitizer. 

·         Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth unless you have just cleaned your hands. 

·         Cover your cough and sneeze with a tissue or into your arm, not your hand.

·         Stay home if you are sick. 

 Thank you for your partnership.


Coyotes: here to stay? Bet on it.

By KEN POLE

One Faircrest Heights resident reported seeing a pack of five coyotes in her back yard last month and, more recently, another encountered a pack of four strolling down Briar Avenue while he was walking his dog. Then, this past Monday evening, I saw a lone coyote dart across Highridge Avenue at Crestview before disappearing between two houses abutting Billings Park.

This evidently is part of an increasing presence of Canis latrans in urban areas as municipalities push out their boundaries and it seems to be most prevalent in the south end of Ottawa, where coyotes have been spotted rooting through garbage. This could be due to a reduced inability to catch their usual prey, such as rabbits and mice, because of the snow and ice buildup in our parks and other greenspace.

Should you be concerned? Some wildlife experts say otherwise but it’s a good idea to take precautions with children and small pets. Is it coincidence that we seem to have an increased number of cats reported “missing” in Faircrest Heights in the past year or so? I don’t think so, even though cats generally aren’t normal prey for coyotes. But, again, there is the coyotes’ apparent difficulty in capturing their usual prey.

Coyotes will take feral cats or the occasional domestic one which has been left outdoors or insists on being out. And they will go after small dogs. So if you hear one barking in your neighbour’s back yard, it might be worthwhile letting them know about this.

Like other parts of our municipality, Faircrest Heights has a lot of greenspace which is an effective corridor for coyotes, which don’t need a cohesive area such as a single park. They thrive if there’s enough food and shelter and can have ranges of 40 square kilometres.

The Urban Coyote Initiative, which monitors the animals throughout North America, says that research with more than 1,400 scats indicated that “the most common food items were small rodents (42%), fruit (23%), deer (22%), and rabbit (18%).” Only about 2% of the scats had human garbage and 1.3% showed evidence of cats. “Apparently, the majority of coyotes in our study area do not, in fact, rely on pets or garbage for their diets,” the UCI researchers said.

However, they acknowledged that coyotes have become habituated and overly bold – such as the pack wandering down Briar recently. The homeowner who saw them said they were almost going door-to-door to check out whatever might smell good.

John Pisapio, formerly with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources & Forests (OMNRF) and now senior wildlife biologist with the Newfoundland & Labrador Department of Environment & Conservation, once told The Ottawa Sun that upswings in coyote populations are a natural phenomenon. "These animals are regarded as being highly intelligent and adaptable,” he said. “They are here to stay. They're part of the ecosystem, and they've been part of the urban landscape for a number of decades too."

The OMNRF cautions against feeding squirrels because as those rodents proliferate they attract larger predators. A male coyote can weigh up to 20 kilograms, a female up to 18kg.

So what to do if you encounter a solitary coyote or a pack? For one thing, don’t approach them. If there’s any indication of interest on their part, shout and make yourself as “large” as possible. Carry an umbrella which can be used to frighten the animals when you open it. Consider a ski pole as a deterrent. And walk away slowly if that’s a option. Never run because that, as with just about any canine, is an invitation to chase.

In cases where coyotes pose a clear threat to you or pets, homeowners can hire an approved agent (the OMNRF doesn’t do it) to destroy a coyote if it poses an obvious threat. You can check out that option at https://www.ontario.ca/page/harass-capture-or-kill-wild-animal-damaging-private-property.

That said, you are legally entitled to protect yourself, family, pets or property but there’s a catch: Ontario law states that this must be done “humanely”. The only real option there is a gun but the OMNRF points out that there are bylaws against discharging firearms within the City, so they recommend calling the police if there is an imminent danger.

 

 

 

 

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