Tillbury Park – lifecycle project for playground and gazebo

19 04 2019

The City is moving forward with the lifecycle renewal of the playground and gazebo at Tillbury Park. It is anticipated that the replacement will be completed in the Fall with the playground area re-opened in late Fall (these timelines are weather-dependent). A more specific timeline will be available over the next few months. The work area will be fenced off (including one of the pathway entrances) but the intention is to minimize the impact on park access during the replacement.

Right now staff are looking for the community’s input on the two design options for the playground equipment. Attached you’ll see two options, Concept A and Concept B. They are attached below in both .Pdf and .Jpg formats. We encourage your feedback on either option.

Please send your comments both to our office via Jeff.Leiper@Ottawa.ca (and/or Fiona.Mitchell@Ottawa.ca) and to the park planner, Renée Proteau at Renee.Proteau@Ottawa.ca or by calling 613-580-2424 ex. 26967. The planner is taking feedback until May 3.


5 04 2019

Domicile Roosevelt Developmentwestbororesidentsgroup@gmail.com


Unitarian development plans

3 04 2019

The Unitarian congregation on Cleary has embarked on a planning exercise to look at how their site might be developed in future. They’re retained a planning consultant and on Sunday, May 5 from 12:30 pm – 3:30 pm they’ll be presenting the results of their visioning exercise. The public is invited, and I’ll have more details as the date approaches.

From Jeff Leiper’s newsletter March 16, 2019

Annual McKellar Park EGG HUNT is Back!

27 03 2019

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Yes, that’s right spring is here and that means the annual egg hunt is just around the corner.

Thank you to our wonderful McKellar Park neighbours who are once again organizing this annual tradition. Join your neighbours and help spread the word by sharing this event and inviting your friends.

The hunt is on — rain, shine, snow, or mud — on Saturday, April 20th beginning for the kids at 10:30am.

Those participating are encouraged to bring along an item to share for the cookie potluck, which will take place following the egg hunt near the Field House.

Here is how it works:

Parents provide 10 plastic eggs filled with a peanut-free treat per participating child. One adult arrives in the park early (9:45am) to hide eggs.

When the hunt begins, all the kids shoot off to find any 10 eggs. Then the older kids help the young ones to find their 10.

Hope to see you on April, 20th at McKellar Park !

To share with your Facebook friends, visit the event listing and let them know you’ll attend.


11 03 2019



March, 2019

Welcome to our new newsletter!

Since the last Annual General Meeting in the fall, your MPCA Executive has been discussing where we go from here. McKellar Park, Westboro, and Kitchissippi Ward in general, are starting into a period of significant change. In a few years, our communities will be different than they are now. Some of that change will be for the good, and some of it will not. Light rail transit, development pressures, more intensification, infill pressures, environmental issues, stresses on our parks and greenspace – all of these things will transform us.
We feel it is important that people in our community have a chance to influence those changes. It’s our community. We live in it. Our kids go to school in it. This new MPCA newsletter is one way of helping with this process.
We intend to put this newsletter out regularly, or whenever major issues require it, but it will only be effective if residents like you get involved. So please come out to meetings. Sign up for regular communications using the links below. Pass this on to your friends and neighbours and urge them to connect with us. Let us and your Councillor, Jeff Leiper, know how you feel about the issues that you care about. Tell us about improvements, additions, and changes that you would like to see.

Your MPCA Executive

The MPCA is working for you:

  • Keeping you informed and seeking your input and involvement.
  • Monitoring and responding to light rail transit, traffic, planning, zoning and development issues.
  • Promoting community interests with our City Councillor, Jeff Leiper, and at Ward Council.
  • Collaborating with other community associations and participating in the Federation of Citizens’ Association of Ottawa.
  • Organizing community events and the fall Annual General Meeting – all are welcome!


Keep in touch with us!



2019 developments

Did you know?

Stage 2 of Light Rail Transit (LRT) construction from Tunney’s Pasture west to Lincoln Fields and beyond is planned to start. It will run underground just south of the Sir John A. Macdonald parkway from Fraser Ave. west, under Richmond Rd. at Cleary Ave. to the Byron Linear Park, and continue underground to New Orchard Avenue. Cleary Station will be built within the Byron Linear Park between Cleary Ave. and Sherbourne Road. Rochester Field (next to the Keg Manor) will be used as a construction staging area.

Water mains will be replaced along the north side of Richmond Rd. between Cleary and Fraser. Along with this project, a raised westbound cycle track and widened sidewalks will be implemented. Richmond Rd. will be reduced to one lane each way west of Fraser.

As part of the Sherbourne Road resurfacing, bicycle lanes will be painted. On-street parking will be restricted to one side of Sherbourne, between Byron to Dovercourt on the west side; and between Saville to Bromley on the east side.

MPCA is asking the City to commit to the lifecycle renewal of Tillbury Park. It was last upgraded in the 90’s and has been on the renewal list since 2014. We are working with Jeff Leiper to have a City planner assigned to the project, which at this time will be play structure replacement only. We are pushing to have the retaining wall, gazebo and pathway resurfacing included as well, but it is unknown if the City will agree. The basketball court is not due for repairs until 2024. To keep up to date, join the Tillbury Park Renewal group on Facebook.

We are planning an Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 20 in McKellar Park.

The Fall Festival is back this autumn. Please plan to join us at McKellar Park on Sunday, September 22 from 10 am to 2 pm for a fun-filled day of activities, music, food, and great company. This local event is about bringing together hundreds of community members from near and far to celebrate our wonderful neighbourhood. Planning has already begun and we’re recruiting volunteers. If you have ideas to suggest to the planning committee, time to help promote the event throughout the summer, or are interested in lending a hand at the event, please contact Emma Mallach by email at mpca.blog@gmail.com


Would you like to…?

  • Join the Executive committee to lead an issue, or volunteer to help?
    Email mpca.blog@gmail.com
  • Give us your input?
    Attend an Executive committee meeting (see Coming Events at mckellarpark.ca)
  • Help out with the Fall Festival?
    Email mpca.blog@gmail.com
  • Help organize a Winter Carnival for next year?
    Email mpca.blog@gmail.com
  • Deliver our newsletters to one or more blocks in the neighbourhood? Email cdecuypere @ sympatico.ca


Ottawa City Council approves Stage 2 LRT Project

10 03 2019

From a recent email to the stage2@ottawa.ca mailing list:


Stage 2 LRT, the largest capital project in the City of Ottawa’s history, was approved by City Council on March 6, 2019.

Stage 2 is made up of two projects. It will extend the existing Trillium Line south from Greenboro Station to Riverside South, with a link to the Ottawa Macdonald-Cartier International Airport. It will also extend the Confederation Line farther east to Trim Road and west to both Moodie Drive and Baseline Station.

Council endorsed the selection of East-West Connectors to design, build and finance the Confederation Line extension, which would add 12.5 kilometres of rail and five stations in the east and 15 kilometres of rail and 11 stations in the west.

Council also endorsed the selection of TransitNEXT to design, build, finance and maintain the Trillium Line extension, which would add 16 kilometres of rail and eight stations in the south.

Construction will begin this year to extend the O-Train farther south, east and west, with construction completion anticipated in 2022, 2024 and 2025 respectively.

Stage 2 will forever change how we get around Canada’s capital.

When Stage 2 is complete, 77 percent of Ottawa residents will be within five kilometres of light rail. This means shorter commutes, cleaner air, and a stronger economy.

Read More

What’s next for Stage 2?

Additional information regarding the Stage 2 LRT Project will be made available prior to construction beginning in 2019.

Project updates will be posted on stage2lrt.ca and communicated via the Stage 2 LRT Newsletter.


For more information on the Stage 2 LRT project, please visit stage2lrt.ca; you will find the Stage 2 Contract Award report and presentation, helpful factsheets, frequently asked questions and maps.

Should you have any questions regarding the project, please contact stage2@ottawa.ca.

Cleary station move

10 03 2019


The following is a recent post from Councillor Jeff Leiper’s kitchissippiward.ca site:

As many residents are now aware through the media, the LRT phase 2 station that was to be located at the strip mall at 747 Richmond Road is now going to be located instead in Byron Linear Park between Sherbourne and Cleary Avenue.

First, I’d like to extend an apology for not writing this post sooner. I have been out of the office for medical reasons and the budget and LRT votes have been a whirlwind since my return Monday. Ordinarily, I would have put this online and in my newsletter in more timely fashion. Earlier this week Councillor Kavanagh and I held a public meeting to look at the changes. For those not able to attend, though, I wanted to provide this overview.

Most basically, the station will be moved into Byron Park. As shown in the inset photo (click it to enlarge), it will be configured as a 10mx100m open cut with a “headhouse” at one end containing the fare gates, stairs and elevators, etc. The train platform itself will be around 6-7m below grade.

The new configuration has several advantages in my mind versus the previously proposed location at 747 Richmond.

  • It moves the station away from a major combined sanitary/storm sewer that serves the west end of Ottawa. This will minimize the risk of disrupting that pipe during construction. Any serious disruption to that infrastructure would have severe impacts for the west end of Ottawa.
  • As an open air station, it won’t require a fan plant. The previous iteration at 747 was entirely underground (the NCC would allow only a tunnel) and would have required a large fan plant in the NCC greenspace.
  • The new location provides a gentler transition from the SJAM corridor to the Richmond-Byron corridor with a less severe curve.
  • Importantly, in my mind, it brings the station closer to the majority of people who will be using it. Reaching it won’t require crossing Richmond for the many riders south of the station, and I believe it will be safer.
  • The new location results in an estimated cost saving of $10 million. Putting on my hat as a councillor with a duty consider the welfare of the whole City, I can’t ignore the benefit of that in terms of reducing the cost of LRT for future generations.

There are, however, drawbacks. The key one is a loss of greenspace. I agree that this is significant. It’s mitigated somewhat by the extensive landscaping and programming space improvements in Byron Linear Park that are forthcoming as part of the LRT project. But, for those who would prefer to keep this as open, grassed space, that’s a legitimately asserted drawback. I believe that the park improvements are going to make the whole park better, and that in the balance of public interests here, the benefits outlined above outweigh the drawback. I absolutely understand that many will disagree.

There are also multiple concerns raised around traffic impacts. I wish we had had a more comprehensive consultation opportunity because having given these lots of thought, I don’t consider that the move will result in significantly changed traffic patterns compared to the 747 location. The pick-up and drop off for 747 was going to be on Byron around 90m east of the new location. We have extensively calmed Byron Avenue, and Redwood will continue to be closed off as originally proposed. There may, of course, be the need in future to adjust and react to inappropriate driver behaviours, but I don’t believe that we will be faced with significantly different scenarios between the 747 or new locations.

I have also heard concerns over noise. That’s legitimate, though I would encourage everyone to go see the train testing in the eastern part of our ward. Noise was a major concern of mine in Stage 1, since put entirely to rest since I’ve seen the trains in action. Based on what I’ve seen and heard, combined with the fact that the train platforms will be 6-7 metres below the surface, I don’t believe residents will ever be disturbed by their operation.

On social media, I’ve seen questions posed about safety. Again, I absolutely understand that having a 10m open trench in the park will raise those questions. I’m assured that it will be properly fenced. Throughout most of its length, the LRT is open air (for example along the length of Scott Street next to the MUP) and I’m confident that it will be safe.

We also need to address the question around expropriating 747 Richmond: whether the station is at 747 or this new location, that property must still be acquired in order to build the LRT. It will be completely dug up to build the rail tunnel underneath, and the change in station location doesn’t change that.

One change, though, is that the 747 property has been on the City’s radar (and mine) as an opportunity to build affordable housing near transit. With the previous location plan, building on top of the station at 747 would have required around $5 million in work to ensure the structure could handle a mixed-use development on top. Staff assert, and I believe, that that investment would never have been recouped by the City. It would have been a lost sunk cost.

A word on that future development, and zoning in general. First, I need to emphasize that there is no concrete plan in place to build anything at the 747 site. The availability of that site for some kind of affordable housing, likely in a mixed-use, mixed-income building will be part of a more comprehensive plan that will come later this year to put in place a policy of building affordable housing near transit. There will be multiple steps and consultations when an actual plan is put in place to build there. And, I’d like to reassure residents that staff have been clear with me for several years that they agree the height limits on that site imposed by the OMB will be respected.

A clear concern I’ve heard expressed, as well, is that moving the station closer to residences will make it more likely that the south side of Byron could see denser development than we have anticipated in the new Cleary-New Orchard secondary plan. Unfortunately, I can’t provide any guarantees on that front. I believe the new plan will be respected for at least the next decade or longer. Moving the station this relatively short distance doesn’t to my mind reduce the defensibility and underpinnings of that plan, which contemplated transit in very close proximity to the existing residential areas. Long term? It is always open for a developer to come forward with a proposal, and some future councillor and Council may be asked to deviate from the plan. This shift, however, doesn’t make it any more likely that some future zoning change will be approved. The centre of the magic circle simply isn’t shifting far enough.

On balance, when I consider the pros and cons, I support this shift as being in the public interest.

So how did we get to this point where so little notice was given of the change? What happened to consultation?

For several years, I’ve been convening a working group of the City and ward residents who live nearby, including the McKellar Park community association, in what has been an honest, rich discussion about the LRT2 alignment. At times, we’ve met monthly. This supplemented the larger public consultations in a meeting format that encouraged dialog. Last summer, while the bidders were preparing their bids (the “in-market” period), the bidders told the City that they considered a move from the proposed 747 site would have multiple benefits, and we discussed that at our working group. In October, just prior to the municipal election, the City presented the possibility of this change to a general meeting of the McKellar Park community association.

The commitment we had was of further discussion if the change was, in fact, allowed by the City to move ahead as part of the larger Stage 2 contract. I was expecting a lot more discussion before the vote. That didn’t happen. As I’ll outline in a later post outlining the Stage 2 vote, the community had roughly two weeks to be made aware of the change, digest the information, and weigh in. That’s insufficient time. It’s not just Cleary but the broader Stage 2 approval for which there has been – after several years of very rich consultation – insufficient discussion with community about this significant change.

The decision has been made, and I’m comfortable that it was the right one. I’m not comfortable that the community has even begun to digest it. While the decision now seems irrevocable, my commitment is still to work closely with the community on the impacts. I want to better understand the expected traffic impacts from the change so we can be proactive about addressing those. And, I’ll work with Councillor Kavanagh and staff to do the same work with the community that I’ve done around Stage 1: ensuring that the community understands the expected construction impacts, and has a voice in trying to mitigate those with regular meetings. With time, now, I hope to get many of the specific details to residents as I get those from City staff.

I invite and look forward to your questions and feedback.