With the opening of Lansdowne Park now only weeks away, the Glebe residents will look to define acceptable parking areas in their neighbourhood.
The Glebe Community Association is concerned that cars driven by stadium patrons attending football games and other events will spill into the residential areas and parking for Glebe businesses will also be limited. To alleviate this concern, the association's transportation committee chairman Brian Mitchell has reached out for support from the Glebe business improvement area to define commercial parking in the Glebe.
The two groups plan to send a joint statement to city on the issue.
"The intention is to set the lines and respect the needs of the commercial area," Mitchell said. "And the areas close to homes should be up to residents to use."
The statement is currently being drafted, but Mitchell said another purpose is to establish that the association is against future reduction of parking due to new developments, and to set the boundaries for commercial and residential parking. Gilbert Russell, chairman of the BIA, said he understands Mitchell's desire to be proactive.
The boundaries are defined as the "wrap around" of the side streets directly beside the commercial side of Bank Street. This area would be metered, pay-and-display parking and depending on the street, the commercial portion would vary, but typically includes at least the first three houses closest to Bank Street.
Matthew Pearson Ottawa Citizen
“Glebe residents upset? Water still wet.”
“Glebe residents are just a bunch of spoild (sic) people who just like to complicate life.”
These are a few of the comments posted on Facebook in response to a story I filed Tuesday night after attending a public meeting at the Glebe Community Centre.
The purpose of the meeting was to hear from city officials and the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG) about the plan to get football fans to and from Ottawa Redblacks games once Lansdowne Park opens next month.
At the back of the room, large panels were set up on easels to impart information about everything from anticipated attendance on game nights to the route OSEG’s free park-and-shuttle service will take to bring ticket holders who park in four lots (Canada Post, Vincent Massey Park, the R.A. Centre and Carleton University) to the redeveloped TD Place stadium.
OSEG CEO Bernie Ashe, city officials and Capital Coun. David Chernushenko were all on-hand to answer specific questions and try to sell the plan. Even Minto executive chairman Roger Greenberg was there.
Afterward, 150 or so people took their seats and sat through about 45 minutes of presentations. And then the floor was turned over to the public.
Now, I’ve covered a lot of public meetings during my time as a reporter and can tell you that this is usually when public meetings lose the plot. People line up in single file with all their grievances and unload, their voices rising in anger as their confidence (or indignation?) is boosted by cheers from the audience.
The temperature in the room rises to a boil and soon nothing the people answering the questions can say will appease the angry masses.
Well, I sat in that grand hall on Third Avenue and can tell you it didn’t go down this way. Sure, some folks made snide comments about the Lansdowne redevelopment, but the vast majority was civilized and respectful. They got up, asked questions about things that matter to them and then returned to their seats.
City, OSEG outline plans to get fans to stadium on game day
By Michelle Nash, Ottawa Community News
Concerns over traffic generated by events at Lansdowne Park brought more than 100 area residents out to an open house at the Glebe Community Centre on June 17.
Among the topics discussed at the meeting was traffic management during Ottawa Redblacks games, which generated the bulk of concerns from residents. Brian Mitchell, chairman of the Glebe Community Association’s traffic committee, told the various stakeholders in attendance that the biggest concern from the group’s standpoint is whether or not people attending games will make use of the variety of transportation options available.
“I can’t help but be impressed with the amount of time and effort it takes to make sure game nights will be handled well,” Mitchell said. “(But) will it be tempting to drive through the neighbourhood first to see if there is a spot before driving to the park and ride?”
Organized by the association, the event provided the opportunity to look at the transportation plan and offered a panel discussion featuring the likes of Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group chief operating officer Bernie Ashe and Phil Landry, manager of traffic services, Scott Campbell from the city’s bylaw department and Fred Gaspere from the National Capital Commission.
Once the floor was opened up to questions, resident after resident questioned OSEG and city staff about whether ticket holders would be pushed to utilize the transit and shuttle options offered.
Landry, who worked with a small group of residents on the Lansdowne transportation monitoring operations committee, assured the crowd that planning for this event is no different than planning for other major events in the city and the goal is to have everything run smoothly.
“We’ve done this before and we will do it again,” Landry said.
Matthew Pearson, Ottawa Citizen
The decision to run shuttle buses down Lakeside Avenue emerged as a key concern Tuesday among some Glebe residents who attended a public meeting on the transportation plan for Lansdowne Park.
As part of its effort to encourage people not to drive to Ottawa Redblacks games and other major events at the new TD Place Stadium, the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group is offering a free park-and-shuttle service from four parking lots — Canada Post (Riverside and Heron), Vincent Massey Park, the R.A. Centre and Carleton University.
The 80 to 90 shuttle buses will converge on Bronson Avenue, travel north to Lakeside and then connect to the Queen Elizabeth Driveway.
Some Lakeside residents wonder why their street was chosen instead of larger arterial roads, Carling Avenue and Preston Street, which also loop around to Queen Elizabeth.
The concern with that route, according to the city traffic manager Phil Landry, is that it might take longer and that could turn some people off of the shuttle option.
“If they don’t use it, it becomes more problematic for everybody in the Glebe,” Landry said.
The city, OSEG and the NCC will monitor the route, evaluate how the first four games go and decide in August about what route will be used for the latter half of the season, he said.
Concerns were also raised about the number of shuttle and OC Transpo buses that will be needed to transport people home after the games.
Joanne Chianello, Ottawa Citizen
When the community gathers on Tuesday evening to hear the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group its long-awaited transportation plan to get fans to and from Lansdowne Park on RedBlack game days (and other major events with more than 15,000 people), it’s almost certain that the residents of Lakeview Avenue will be well-represented at the community meeting. (The Citizen will be well-represented, too, as City Hall reporter Matthew Pearson will be covering the event.)
And no wonder. The plan OSEG has cooked up — which is not a bad strategy at all, frankly — is to encourage as many people as possible to take either public transit or special private shuttles to the games. All transportation, including parking, is included in the ticket price (the city is not subsidizing any of these costs), so there’s a real incentive for folks to use these convenient options. There will still be those stubborn enough to insist on driving in hopes of finding nearby parking, but OSEG and the city have promised to tweak the parking rules to keep the nuisance to the surrounding area to a minimum. We’ll see. I wrote about it in my latest column, here.
But the plan is pretty much terrible for the folks who live on Lakeside Avenue.
Joanne Chianello, Ottawa Citizen
Redblacks organization to public: Please, for the love of God, do not drive your car to Lansdowne Park on game day.
And in case you didn’t hear him the first 12 times, the chief executive of Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group has this to say to Redblacks ticket holders: “Do not leave home in your car and drive to the venue,” pleaded Bernie Ashe. “There will be no parking at the venue.”
With almost exactly a month to go until to our new CFL team’s home opener on July 18, OSEG released its transportation strategy on how to move as many as 24,000 fans in and out of football games at the newly named TD Place.
And here’s the thing: it’s not a bad game plan.
Naturally, the strategy will need tweaks. It will have to be adjusted once we see how the plan actually works in real life. Buses might have to be rerouted. Perhaps additional street parking restrictions will have to be put in place. And bylaw officers will have to be super-strict about enforcing all parking rules to the letter (as they should be).
All in all, though, OSEG’s transportation blueprint is a good start.
As Ashe is at extreme pains to tell you, the key to transportation strategy is that the majority of people not drive: OSEG is looking for 60 per cent of spectators to either take a special shuttle or OC Transpo, with another 12 per cent of folks walking or cycling.
Ottawa RedBlacks season starts Friday, July 18
Work on Lansdowne Park continues to get the stadium ready for the Ottawa RedBlacks July 18 home opener. (CBC)
With the Ottawa RedBlacks home opener a month away, the team's owners have outlined their plan to get more than 20,000 fans to and from the new TD Place Stadium on game days.
Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group has encouraged football fans to make use of free public transit and park-and-ride shuttle services when planning their trips to the games at the stadium at Lansdowne Park. But a recent survey suggested only four in 10 fans planned to take advantage of the free services.
On Monday, OSEG announced plans for free park and shuttle services from multiple locations in Ottawa and Gatineau, free bus transit on all routes and secure on-site parking for bicycles.
"It's a plan that encourages visitors to leave their cars at home and have a stress-free, door-to-door experience," OSEG CEO Bernie Ashe was quoted saying in a media release.
Tickets to events at TD Place are also tickets to ride for free on OC Transpo or Société de transport de l'Outaouais (STO) to and from the venue.
Matthew Pearson, Ottawa Citizen
The Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group attempted Monday to answer the question that has been on everyone’s mind lately, especially if you live in the Glebe: How will all those eager football fans get to the game once the new stadium at Lansdowne Park reopens next month?
By bus, by bike or by foot — but hopefully not by car.
OSEG unveiled its comprehensive transportation plan to get people to to the redeveloped site, which will open in stages between July 18 — the night of the Ottawa Redblacks’ home opener — and next summer.
On game nights, OSEG says, it hopes 36 per cent of people will take advantage of its free park-and-shuttle service, and that another 20 per cent will use public transit. OC Transpo and Gatineau’s transit service will both be free for ticket holders, and the stadium will also offer free bike parking.
Trendy retailer has strict conditions about what ingredients can be used
U.S. grocery chain Whole Foods is calling on local farmers and artisans to help stock the shelves of its new market at the redeveloped Lansdowne Park this year.
As it has done in the U.S., the company issued a call for people in the area who sell non-genetically modified foods from the area around a store to pitch them on items such as salad dressing, fair trade coffee and produce.
Mandi Lunan, founder of Auntie Loo's Treats, has been selling vegan cupcakes, squares and cookies for 10 years in Ottawa and said she's interested.