May 1, 2020 newsletter from Rawlson King, City Councillor for Rideau-Rockcliffe.
Earlier this year the City of Ottawa declared a Housing and Homelessness Emergency, a motion which I seconded and supported. Currently, we are asking the City to consider purchasing hotels to provide accommodations for people experiencing homelessness. This is critical during the COVID-19 pandemic as Ottawa's shelters are overcrowded. While shelters are doing everything they can to enforce social distancing, hygiene, and cleanliness it is more critical than ever that we do what we can to find housing for people who have no home to stay at today. Councillor McKenney launched a campaign called #Hotels2Homes, to ask the federal government to help the city acquire the funding required to purchase empty hotels and motels immediately. Visit housingemergencyottawa.ca to add your name to the list of supporters!
Noise exemption granted for local mosques during Ramadan
A new noise exemption is being granted today to allow mosques to broadcast a 5-minute call to prayer at sundown each day until May 23, in recognition of the holy month of Ramadan. This noise exemption has been permitted in recognition of Ramadan and in light of the Provincial Order prohibiting the gathering of more than five people.
The provincial government is amending an emergency order to help ensure food security for some individuals and families during the pandemic. I was pleased that this occurred after writing a letter with Councillor Menard to the Ontario Government asking for changes to the order. The amendment will permit the use of allotment gardens and community gardens across the province. These gardens are an essential source of fresh food for some individuals and families, including those who face food insecurity. Local medical officers of health will provide advice, recommendation and instructions that the gardens must meet in order to operate, such as physical distancing, and cleaning and disinfecting commonly used equipment and surfaces.
Solid Waste Master Plan
The City has completed the first phase of its Solid Waste Master Plan, a 30-year plan that will guide how it manages solid waste. Phase one provides an overview of the current state of the City’s waste management system, including collection, diversion and processing. While developing the master plan, staff are working on eight supplementary projects to improve waste diversion:
Projects to be completed this year:
- A pilot to divert waste from parks
- Consultation about diverting waste at special events
- Work to prepare for the forthcoming transition when the Province will make producers fully responsible for waste diversion programs
Projects to be completed in 2021:
- A strategy to increase waste diversion at multi-residential properties
- A new policy to determine if additional items, like compostable coffee pods and utensils, could be accepted in green bins
- A review of service levels for curbside waste collection
Projects to be completed in 2022:
- An assessment of whether the City can ban single-use and foamed plastics from its facilities
- Research on how we could process organics after the current contract ends
Residents and stakeholders will have opportunities to provide feedback during the next phases of the master plan, including:
- This summer on overall satisfaction with the City’s waste management, the kinds of waste management system they want in the future and the master plan’s vision, guiding principles, goals and objectives.
- This winter on proposed options for the master plan.
- Next fall on the draft master plan.
Montreal Road – Lane reductions will remain in place at the intersection of Montreal Road and Vanier Parkway until Friday, May 15 for watermain work, as part of the Montreal Road Revitalization project. Left turns from Vanier Parkway onto Montreal Road are prohibited.
O-Train Line 1 – The O-Train Line 1 will close temporarily and be replaced by R1 bus service on Saturday, May 2 and Sunday, May 3, and again from Saturday, May 9 until Wednesday, May 13 to complete maintenance activities and work relating to issues that have impacted service. More information is available on octranspo.com.
O-Train Line 2 – Starting on Sunday, May 3, O-Train Line 2, will close between Bayview and Greenboro stations for construction of the Stage 2 O-Train expansion. During the closure, bus service will replace the train service and will stop at all five O-Train Line 2 stations (Bayview, Carling, Carleton, Mooney’s Bay and Greenboro) as well as at South Keys, Walkley and Heron stations and at the intersection of Preston Street and Gladstone Avenue. Buses will operate at least every 15 minutes and more frequently as required to provide additional capacity and space for physical distancing among customers onboard. O-Train Line 2 will reopen when construction is complete. More information is available on octranspo.com.