Stittsville Resident Helps Save Family

I would like to commend a Stittsville resident, whose name shall remain anonymous at this time, whose fast actions saved the lives of her neighbours this past Thursday morning. At 5:30 a.m. the resident smelled smoke coming from a home on Smoketree Crescent. Realizing there was a fire occurring in the home’s garage, the resident immediately called 911 then ran to the home’s front door and rang the doorbell repeatedly.  She shouted to alert the occupants.  Fortunately the resident was able to wake everyone inside and evacuate them to safety. Fire teams had the blaze under control within 20 minutes.

This is a wonderful example of the great community we live in – neighbours watching out for neighbours. I along with the family are truly grateful for the quick actions of both the resident and our Emergency Services.

Capital Pride Week

Capital Pride Week takes place next week, August 19th to 26th, and various City of Ottawa departments will participate in this year’s festivities.

A flag raising ceremony will take place on Monday, August 20th at noon, at City Hall, Marion Dewar Plaza among other locations around the City.

Ottawa Police Services and the Emergency and Protective Services Department will host a free barbeque from 11:30 am until 2 pm at Marion Dewar Plaza, following the flag-raising ceremony. Everyone welcome! Donations to community charitable organizations will be accepted.

Innovation Pod for musicians and artists to land at Lansdowne Park

The City of Ottawa, in partnership with Bayview Yards, and prototypeD TEAM Inc, are making beautiful music together at Lansdowne Park with the MadeMill Innovation Pod – available for Ottawa musicians and other artists.

The Innovation Pod is a multi-use mobile technology studio designed for entrepreneurs, with support from FedDev Ontario(link is external). It was developed at Bayview Yards by protoypeD TEAM and provides a creative space that can be used in a multitude of ways.

The space can be used for workshops, podcasts, media space, virtual reality demos, music performance, recording studio time and other events. The pod is fully wired and self sufficient, with solar panels providing energy to run all technology. The pod features a 3-D printer and a special recording studio, complete with acoustic tiling, for podcasts or intimate performances.

The Innovation Pod’s residency at Lansdowne advances the new Ottawa Music Strategy goal of opening up more City-owned space to musicians and the music industry.

The Ottawa Music Industry Coalition (OMIC) and Apt613 are providing programming for the space from September to November, making these capabilities available to local musicians and artists in support of Ottawa’s Music Strategy and broader economic development. Programming for August has been supplied by prototypeD.

Visit Ottawa.ca to find out about upcoming events at the pod.

Fall and Winter Online Registration Update

Online registration for Fall and Winter City programs began this past Monday and Wednesday with the process opening up to residents at 9:00 p.m. on both evenings. My office received some comments from residents that it was difficult to get through to the server and complete the registration as well as asking why the process was so late in the evening.

In the past, the City has opened up registration at midnight on the day of registration. This meant that if someone wanted to secure a specific program at a favorite location, they would have to stay up until midnight to try and secure the spot.  Complaints about how late people had to stay up led to Council asking staff to look at opening the on-line registration earlier.  Initially this time was moved back to 10:00pm and then two years ago to 9:00 pm.

At the opening of registrations this week at 9:00 pm, approximately 5,000 clients were trying to access the system at the same time.   City servers currently have a capacity of 450 concurrent users, with each user spending five to 10 minutes completing a transaction before they sign off and free a spot.   With this volume, servers are at capacity until about 11:00pm.  After this, the peak period passed and there was improved availability almost immediately.  By 11:15pm on Monday, concurrent users dropped from 450 at 11:00 pm to 210.  By 11:00p.m. 7,395 clients had registered into programs.

Almost every municipality faces this peak volume challenge.  The City’s system is designed to handle everyday capacity for registrations, but cannot handle the peak volume of opening night registrations.  In the past, the City has investigated adding server capacity to better meet this challenge, but the cost was over $1 million.   It is not reasonable to expend this amount of funds to install capacity that would be put to use for two hours for a maximum of four days per year (Aquatic and Land registration nights for Fall/Winter in August and Aquatic and Land registration nights for Spring/Summer in March).

The City is currently working on how to improve the registration service and hopes to have something in place within a year.

The Recreation eGuide and Mon Cyberguide francophone des loisirs for fall and winter programs are now available online at ottawa.ca.

Residents who do not have access to the Internet can visit City facilities or libraries with public Internet access. They can also visit any Client Service Centre or City facility where customer service staff can help with registration. Most community centres provide printed brochures for their local activities.

Scam targeting small businesses

Hydro Ottawa received multiple reports today of suspicious callers posing to be utility representatives. These suspicious callers, posing as Hydro Ottawa, threaten businesses with power disconnection unless they pay for meter upgrades by credit card. Some businesses were also advised to close for extended periods, and vacate the premises while a worker changes their meter. These calls are not from Hydro Ottawa, and are fraudulent. Ottawa Police Service have been advised.

Hydro Ottawa encourages customers to be cautious. Should they receive a suspicious call, they should ask for the caller’s identification and call us at 613-738-6400 to verify the legitimacy. If businesses have been victims of this scam, they are advised to contact the Canadian Anti-Fraud Centre at 1-888-495-8501, and the Ottawa Police Service at 613-236-1222 ext. 5433.

Caring and Sharing Exchange

It is already that time of the summer when we start to think about kids heading back to school. The Caring and Sharing Exchange is a local charity that provides assistance to Ottawa families and individuals in need, during the Christmas season and the back-to-school season.

The program provides children from families in need with a backpack filled with all the grade-appropriate supplies they need for a successful school year. The goal is to ensure every child in Ottawa starts the school year on equal footing with their peers, ready to learn. This year, there has been an overwhelming 38% increase in need and they currently have 822 children on their waiting list.

In our effort to serve every child on the list this year, it would appreciate if you would help them raise awareness to ensure no child is left behind.  To learn how you can donate to the Caring is Sharing Exchange I invite you to visit the following link.

Last chance to exchange expired OC Transpo bus tickets

OC Transpo paper bus tickets will no longer have value or be exchangeable toward new fare products after Friday, August 31st.
Customers who still have expired bus tickets are encouraged to visit one of the four OC Transpo Customer Service Centres to trade them in at face value toward e-purse or a monthly pass on their Presto card.
Tickets have not been sold since November 30, 2017.

Customers can pay for their bus or train ride using Presto or cash. There are more than 70 locations where customers can load their Presto card. Cards can also be loaded at prestocard.ca.

When O-Train Line 1, the Confederation Line, opens, all light-rail stations will have ticket machines for customer convenience.

For more information on fares, route schedules and travel planning assistance, visit octranspo.com or call 613-741-4390.

GLAD Cleaning the Capital campaign

The City of Ottawa and GLAD are pleased to announce that early bird registration is open for the GLAD Cleaning the Capital campaign, which will take place from September 15th to October 15th. Registration is quick and easy. The interactive map will show you which locations have already been claimed, and the online registration form will allow you to choose your own project site and indicate the cleanup supplies that you need.

Volunteers who register their cleanup project before September 14th have a chance to win one of many early bird prizes donated by our generous sponsors. Volunteers who submit a final cleanup report by October 31st will be eligible for more prizes.

Last year alone, 75,547 volunteers collected 60,437 kg of litter during 1,259 cleanup events.

 This is a great opportunity for families and friends to work together on community cleanup projects that help make Ottawa clean, green and free of litter and graffiti. GLAD Cleaning the Capital is also an excellent way for high school students to earn their community volunteer hours.

Hazardous Waste Depot Schedule 2018

A Household hazardous waste Depot is being held on Sunday August 19th from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at 411 Legget Drive, in the Kanata Research Park. Residential electronic waste material is accepted at this site.

What is household hazardous waste?

If it’s corrosive, flammable or poisonous it’s hazardous waste. These types of products contaminate water and landfills and should never be poured down the drain or put out with your regular garbage.

Liquid or hazardous waste from industrial, commercial and institutional sources is not accepted.  The one-day Household Hazardous Waste Depots are for residential household waste only.

For more information on what you can drop off please visit Ottawa.ca

Warmstone Dentistry Pay it Forward

I am pleased to share with you the following information from the Warmstone Dentistry Clinic at 1300 Main St. suite 204;

“It is with a warm heart and excitement that we are pleased to announce our annual Free Day of Dentistry “From our Hearts to Your Smile” will be held on Saturday September 15th 2018. Registration starts at 7am and it is first come first serve. The clinic will be performing free dentistry from 8am-2pm on this day to anyone who can not afford dentistry. The services will include fillings, extractions, exams and hygiene.

This is an important event that Dr. Yazdani and his team have been doing for years throughout the many clinics in Ottawa he’s been a part of. Warmstone Family Dentistry would like to reach out to the community and ensure everyone knows our doors are open to anybody in need of care on September 15th.

We look forward to accommodating as many patients as possible on a first come, first served basis. Therefore it is a good idea to arrive early for 7am registration.
Patients may choose ONE of the following services:

  • Tooth Extraction
  • Tooth filling
  • Teeth cleaning
  • Denture Repair

    NOTE: Patients MUST be 18+ or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian

We look forward to this event all year so please spread the word to ensure that we help as many people as possible. Anyone who would like to volunteer their dental skills for the day please inquire directly with Warmstone, there is never too many hands when it comes to helping those in need!”

For more information, please contact their office (613) 763-2657