News Bites

Besserer Park still under threat

As reported in the last issue of IMAGE, at least 10% of Besserer Park could be lost and about 20 mature trees cut if approval is given to TC United’s road-opening application. The application asks that Besserer Street be extended into Besserer Park to provide access to three parking spaces at the rear of the developer’s proposed 20-unit apartment building at the bottom of a steep slope at 244 Fountain Place. This application which conflicts with both the Uptown Rideau Street Secondary Plan and the Sandy Hill Secondary Plan is still ongoing.
Over 1,000 apartment units are under construction on Rideau Street nearby, so the City’s statement in its Parks and Recreation Master Plan, “One main requirement for this plan is to determine the need for parkland to meet population growth” should be taken seriously. It is even more important to preserve public parkland for future neighbours.

City Parks and Recreation Master Plan

The City is seeking feedback on the Draft Parks and Recreation Facilities Master Plan. Look up the web site: Engage Ottawa, Parks and Recreation Facilities Master Plan, to find a survey to register your opinion on the plan so far. Unfortunately for ease of use you do have to register to do the survey. Fortunately registration is easy, requiring only a user name and password. Your registration is good for other Engage Ottawa contributions too (so remember your password!). It is highly recommended that you check over the report before answering the survey questions.
Action Sandy Hill has submitted comments on the plan including: “We ask that the Committee direct Staff to re-examine their recommendations to better reflect the energy efficiency, capacity and service improvements needed for existing [downtown] older facilities. The Staff recommendations need to better reflect future densification and to ensure access to recreational and sport services of equal standard as those offered by new facilities, for the residents in these [older] areas.”

Robinson Village Tree Renewal Project

Council has received many calls from the community about the 25 trees recently removed around Robinson Village. Rest assured, all were approved by the City Forestry Manager and went through the correct procedures. The Forestry team is developing a fall replanting plan and this will be shared with the community when approved.

Traffic calming

An all-way stop at Sweetland and Templeton has been accepted and will be implemented in June. A speed limit reduction to 30 kph in the Sandy Hill neighbourhood south of Laurier has been agreed to by Council. More work needs doing before the Sandy Hill neighbourhood north of Laurier gets re-designated.

Sandy Hill Community Health Centre seeks board members

Clients of the SHCHC are invited to consider serving as volunteers on its Board of Directors. If you can commit to monthly meetings, advocacy and networking activities for a two-year term, please email Cristina Coiciu at to get more information.

Pandemic Perspective

Rebecca Gibbons offers an audio Pandemic Perspective that fits nicely into the suite of pandemic stories you found in the April-May edition of IMAGE. For her sound cloud clip wherein five visitors to Strathcona Park tell us how the park is helping them cope with the pandemic click here.

Bigger bins coming to Strathcona Park:

Are you tired of seeing garbage overflowing from the small bins in Strathcona Park? Some good news for you: bigger recycling and garbage receptacles are coming to Strathcona Park sometime in June as part of a City pilot project!

New regulations for short-term rentals:

Ottawa City Council passed the long-awaited regulations for a new bylaw that would establish a host permit system for local short-term rental hosts, and rules for short-term rental platforms, like Airbnb, and property managers. The City’s new short-term rental regulations will require hosts to provide guests with clear instructions (including: waste management, parking, how to minimize community impacts, etc.) and will also require contact information from hosts and property managers to be provided to the City in order to resolve any community issues in a timely manner. In addition to these measures, the bylaw’s regulations also restrict short-term rentals to principal residences. Four additional bylaw officers will be hired to enforce more proactively. A group of landlords has launched an appeal.
The Ottawa Fairbnb Update Report and more info on short-term rental regulations are available at: