This week, City Council approved $1.8 million in additional spending to strengthen care of residents at the City of Ottawa’s four long-term care homes.
Council approved hiring 35 additional support staff as soon as possible with an immediate $800,000 in funding. Council also approved $1 million in capital funding to upgrade equipment such as beds and lifts, and to implement a new electronic resident-care information system.
Council also approved the use of $2.25 million in provincial funding for the City’s 10-Year Housing and Homelessness Plan. Staff will outline new initiatives that could be undertaken to advance the plan at an upcoming Committee meeting.
Council approved the functional design of the Kanata Light Rail Transit service, which would have 11 kilometres of light rail and eight stations. The system would run from Moodie Station along the north side of Highway 417 before turning north to integrate with the Beaverbrook community. It would then turn south, running parallel to Huntmar Drive before crossing the Queensway and terminating at Hazeldean Road.
This is great news for the Stittsville/Kanata communities as I have heard from many residents who supported this route option throughout the Environmental Assessment and public consultation process. It was the best route for bringing LRT right into the heart of Stittsville beyond the Canadian Tire Centre and onto Hazeldean Road.
A new Site Alteration By-law is replacing the existing Drainage By-law and eight Topsoil Preservation By-laws carried over from former municipalities. The new by-law aims to reduce the risk of negative impacts by establishing basic rules for site alteration activities. This includes the removal of topsoil from land, the placement or dumping of fill on land, the alteration of the grade of land, or excavation by any means, including the clearing or stripping of vegetation from the land, the compaction of soil or paving.
To further encourage cycling in Ottawa, Council passed a motion to waive the Encroachment By-law to allow a pilot program for Cyclehop, a bike-sharing program. Bike-sharing stations can be located on the City’s rights of way and property sites, and encroachment fees will be reduced to $250 per year per station and $1 per bike per month.