Committee receives report on resident efforts to protect Ottawa’s waterways and wetlands

A graphic with Ottawa City Hall is in the background. A vertical grey stripe and a horizontal yellow stripe are in the foreground with " Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee update" in the centre.

On Oct. 5, the City’s Agriculture and Rural Affairs Committee received the 2022 annual report on Ottawa’s Rural Clean Water Program(link is external) showing that rural property owners completed 53 projects to protect Ottawa’s waterways, wetlands and groundwater last year.

The program helps farmers and other rural landowners with cost-sharing grants to undertake projects that improve surface water and groundwater quality. The City provided more than $146,000 in grants last year for water protection projects. In addition to the grant funding, landowners contributed nearly $245,000 to these works, investing a total of more than $391,000 in rural land stewardship. Another 15 projects, worth more than $88,000 in grants, are on track to be completed in 2023.

The City approved 13 projects related to erosion control in 2022, along with 10 related to watercourse buffers and windbreaks. The City also approved six projects to decommission unused wells and six projects to develop forest management plans in support of water protection efforts. A new project type for wetland restoration was introduced in 2022, and one such project went ahead in the Castor River watershed.

The Committee approved Official Plan and zoning amendments to permit a soil packaging plant with leaf and yard waste composting (link is external) on 9th Line Road, north of Victoria Street. The proposal is to convert existing buildings from a mushroom growing operation to a soil packaging plant, with potential for future leaf and yard waste composting. The amendments would limit industrial activity to soil packaging and composting, to help limit potential conflicts with a nearby residential area.

The Committee approved a zoning amendment to permit a restaurant with a drive-through on Manotick Main Street(link is external), south of the village core. The proposal is to replace the existing buildings with a five-bay carwash and a restaurant with a drive-through. The amended zoning would ensure a drive-through is required to always be part of the restaurant.

Recommendations from this meeting will rise to Council on Wednesday, October 11.

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