K9: Community Association updates for April 2024

Submitted by the K9 working group

Interested neighbourhood planning? Supporting the building of affordable housing in Kitchissippi: The newly established Bayview Yards Working Group is looking for volunteers. The BYWG (supported by local community associations) is intended to be a quick moving, proactive group of local community volunteers working to ensure the nine hectare, NCC and city-owned Bayview Yards land parcel is developed as a showcase 15-minute, Transit-Oriented Development neighbourhood with a prime focus on real, long-term affordable housing. This includes establishing supportive relationships with surrounding communities and ensuring both new and existing communities have appropriate public amenities. Contact co-chairs Rhys Phillips (phillipsrhys@hotmail.com) or Roy Atkinson (roycatkinson@gmail.com).

How to Research Your Home’s History – Tuesday April 23 at 7:00 p.m.: Have you ever wondered when your house was built or who lived in it over the years? Perhaps you are interested in its design or how your neighbourhood was developed. The Civic Hospital Neighbourhood Association (CHNA)  is offering an interactive webinar where you can learn about the main sources of information you need to write a house history, where to find this information, and what different types of records and research sources can tell you. Attendance for this online event is limited and priority will be given to Civic Hospital area residents. Contact history@chnaottawa.ca to reserve your spot and receive the webinar link. 

A Biodiversity Hotspot in Champlain Park: When spring finally arrives, you can visit an area of high biological diversity in Champlain Park, created by the local Environment Committee. Over 100 native tree, shrub, and herb species are planted along Pontiac Ave. Located at the Carleton Avenue gateway to the Ottawa River Pathway, the restored former roadside includes a Miyawaki mini-forest plantation of trees native to Ottawa, a large pollinator garden, a Carolinian forest terrace showcasing species from a more southerly biome, an ethnobotanical food and medicine terrace, and a rain garden with native herb species.

Six kinds of flowers seen in a photo.
Flowers in Champlain Park. Provided photo.

Building upon a long history of neighbourhood tree care, the restoration began in 2019 when the Champlain Park Community Association partnered with City Councillor Jeff Leiper to de-pave a block of Pontiac Avenue. This project connected the local park to the NCC woods. To prepare the space for planting, community volunteers Kris Phillips, Daniel Buckles, Catherine Shearer, John Arnason, Joscelyn Coolican, and others  removed invasive buckthorn, broken fences, construction waste and dug out gravel. They then incorporated fresh soil and mulch to build level terraces. These areas have been gradually replanted with native plants, started indoors under lights and in backyards by community volunteers or purchased from Ontario plant nurseries. Donations from individuals, the Champlain Park Community Association, and the City of Ottawa, added up to about $3,000 of financial support to date.

During the spring, summer and early fall, these restored areas are alive with colourful flowers, birds, and insects. Grade school classes and university groups periodically visit, as do groups interested in pollinators, trees, and bird life. City Councillors, Federal MPs, and Provincial MPPs have visited as well. The gardens are dormant until late April but come to life in late spring and summer. For more information contact: John.Arnason@uOttawa.ca

Westboro Community Association news: Councillor Leiper held the first consultation on the redevelopment of Lion’s Park. Morley Hoppner Construction will be building two Hobin Architecture designed, bird-friendly, 40-storey buildings at the site of the Granite Curling Club. While most residents are leery of sky-scrapers, the team clearly understand the value of Lion’s Park to the community and it is being redesigned as a destination spot for Westboro residents. One of the more innovative attractions is the proposed refrigerated ice rink that transforms into a concert venue, and more, during the summer. Of the over 40 residents who attended the consultation, most left with hopeful smiles on their faces. 

City of Ottawa drawings showing how the space can look in the winter. It includes an ice rink and two large high rises in the distance.
Proposed drawings for the redevelopment of Lion’s Park. City of Ottawa handout photo.

Island Park Community Association news: A first in our 100-year history, IPCA is offering a guided walking tour on August 11th 2024 as part of the Heritage Ottawa walking tours. The tour will cover most of Island Park Drive, touching upon interesting information about its history and residents.

As part of our Meet Your Neighbour series, we are celebrating the life of Connie Gail (Feller) Salomon who lived at 480 Island Park Drive. Known for her natural beauty and talent for entertaining people, she was crowned Miss Canada for six weeks in 1962. Connie-Gail’s mother, Betty Feller, was one of 5 daughters of Malka and Wolf Goldman who fled the pogroms and escaped Krasnostav, Ukraine (then USSR) onwards to Warsaw Poland with the help of Ukrainians. The girls traveled hundreds of miles separately via an underground wagon network, hidden under hay in wagons, sleeping in the wagon or in pig pens to avoid the risk of soldiers seeing them. When selling their home, Betty intentionally selected the Ukrainian Embassy as the new stewards for 480 Island Park Drive, in gratitude for the support the Ukrainian people showed towards the Goldman family escaping Russia during World War ll.

Find out more at www.islandparkcommunityassociation.ca.

An old black and white photo of Connie.
Connie Gail (Feller) Salomon lived at 480 Island Park Drive. Provided photo.

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