City council has approved the Light Rail Transit (LRT) Confederation Line by a unanimous vote. The Rideau Transit Group (RTG), a consortium of world-leading engineering firms, won the fixed-price contract to design, build, maintain and finance the LRT line from Tunney’s Pasture to Blair, a distance of 12.5 kilometres with 13 stations. Construction is expected to start in late February. You can view the detailed designs of the Confederation Line by visiting confederationline.ca.
The funding for this $2.1 billion project comes from the Government of Canada ($600 million from the Building Canada Fund), the Province of Ontario ($600 million grant) and the City ($900 million - $192 million from Federal Gas Tax funds, $287 million from Provincial Gas Tax funds and the remainder from development charge revenues and transit reserves. It is not being funded by property taxes.
This line is the first stage of a system that will eventually serve all areas of the city – from Kanata to Barrhaven to Riverside South and to Orléans. The overall system is a part of the Master Transportation Plan. This plan shows future light rail routes, bus rapid transit routes and roads, along with cycling and pedestrian plans. Every five years this plan is reviewed and updated in conjunction with the Official Plan for land use designations and an infrastructure plan. The next review is in 2013. A major event is planned for late January to start the review process, which includes reviewing, and possibly changing, priorities for transportation infrastructure, based on need and financial resources. Public sessions will be held in the spring on the proposed priorities for routes and construction. Final approval of the revised plans will occur in December.
NEW YEAR’S EVE
Have fun on New Year’s Eve while staying safe. This year OC Transpo buses are free from 8 p.m. on Dec. 31 to 4 a.m. on Jan. 1, (1 a.m. for Para Transpo) thanks to a partnership between OC Transpo, the city’s Safer Roads Ottawa program, Canadian Automobile Association (CAA) North and East Ontario and the Ottawa Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).
In addition to the free bus service, Ottawa drivers should consider the use of designated drivers, taxi services or Operation Red Nose to ensure a safe passage home throughout the holidays. Our goal at the city of Ottawa is to have the safest roads in the world. No matter how you choose to travel on New Year’s Eve, please stay safe.
There have been a number of house fires recently from several causes, including chimney and kitchen fires and candles. Check to see that your stove is turned off, use candles away from flammable items such as curtains and extinguish them before leaving the room, keep your live Christmas trees watered and check your smoke detectors to ensure they are in working order.
FIFA AND SKATE CANADA
Ottawa has been chosen to host Skate Canada for their national championships in January, 2014 at Scotiabank Place. This will be an opportunity for us to see the skaters that will represent our country in the 2014 winter Olympics.
The city has also been selected as the only city in Ontario to be one of the venues for the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup. This will take place at Lansdowne Park in the stadium that is presently under reconstruction. Events such as these are important for Ottawa’s economy and give us a front seat to see national and international sports.
RACE DATA COLLECTION
Ottawa Police Service will be conducting a series of consultations in the next three months in support of the Traffic Stop Race Data Collection Project. An online forum will be held on Jan. 14 from 6 to 8 p.m. and a public consultation session on Jan. 31 from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the RA Centre, 2451 Riverside Dr. Community groups can arrange for the project team to meet with your group by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further information is available on ottawapolice.ca/race.