Narrow Streets, Creative Minds

Reading Time: 4 minutes When I speak to audiences in Canada I often hear that our cities are not built for bicycles. When Mayor Mayor Mark Gerritsen of Kingston, ON, a city that aims to be the greenest city in Canada eventually, introduced me and mentioned  that “we have to remember that Kingston is an old city with narrow streets“, I had a chuckle. In Halifax I heard similar remarks. Read on. Also our own Maria McRae told me a few years ago that she thought Ottawa “just has no space for bike lanes“. “Do Canada’s cities not have some of the widest roads [Read more…]

No Image

Spring. Ottawa. Bike. – Celebrate Spring on March 24th

Reading Time: 4 minutes Even Sparks Street in Ottawa looks funky if you run a photo through a few filters. It’s all in the eyes of the beholder – Image: Urban Commuter At Citizens for Safe Cycling’s recent Annual General Meeting, Board Member Risa (she from the Ottawa winter bike ride who got her pic in Dandyhorse magazine’s web site, scroll down half way that page) asked everyone to jot down ideas for better cycling in Ottawa. She put all the ideas on a wall, ran it through Wordle and will now forever be known for Risa’s Wall of Wishes. There are so many wishes, that [Read more…]

When Ottawa Wakes up from Hibernation

Reading Time: 3 minutes Talking about extremes. The Ottawa winter has been odd, to say the least. The canal wasn’t open for skating for long; on the other hand, only a week and a half ago we were still skiing in the Gatineau. All of a sudden the weather turned around and Sunday, Ottawa saw 25.1 degrees (as in 77F) . The normals are +4 (40F) max and -7 (20F) minimum for March 18. We hopped on our bikes and cycled along the canal to the Byward Market, and back along the Ottawa River via Parkdale Ave to Nepean. I have never seen so [Read more…]

No Image

“The Iceberg” is Ready

Reading Time: 2 minutes It looks like an iceberg, the Royal Canadian Navy’s new monument at Richmond Landing, a peninsula like piece of land in the Ottawa River, between Victoria Island and the Library and Archives of Canada. It is to be unveiled this spring. It appears ready now, the grass is in, the flag pole (not in the picture) and the trees are planted. The design is from Team McWilliams/Bakker/Haden (Al McWilliams, Joost Bakker and Bruce Haden) from British Columbia. I wonder how long it will remain graffiti free. Not sure what to think of it yet. It doesn’t really wow me. From the Navy’s [Read more…]

What if the Swedes Would Own Chaudière Island?

Reading Time: 6 minutes As you already read in the previous post: Of Post-It Notes and Tapestries, many of the Ottawa residents saw the Chaudière Island as one of the key elements in meeting the ideas and expectations that Canadians have for developing the Nation’s Capital into a world class capital. I have biked around the place and it is really a gorgeous spot, waiting to be developed, now the pulp paper industry is retreating. What about Chaudière Island? For those who don’t live in Ottawa: Chaudière Island has a collection of buildings, some as old as 100 years and built with natural stone, [Read more…]