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May 30, 2012

They're finally adding a sidewalk (sort of) to Huntmar Road

UPDATE JUNE 2: The presentations are now available for download from Shad Qadri's web site.

I was at the "STITTSVILLE OF TOMORROW" presentation at Sacred Heart High School last night, hosted by Stittsville city councillor Shad Qadri.  Sadly, there was no discussion about monorails or anti-gravity Tim Hortons, but there were a few bits of useful information.

I blogged last spring about the dangerous stretch of Huntmar Road between Maple Grove Road and Palladium Drive (near Scotiabank Place).  In July, they're going to re-pave the road and add a separated paved shoulder. Not quite a sidewalk, but a step up from what's there now.  Here's a picture of what they're proposing, including a cement separator and vertical bars to keep cars away from walkers.  Sidewalks and streetlights will be coming eventually, but not for a few years.

(Poor quality image because it's a photo of a display board.)
On the other side of Stittsville, the stretch of road on Stittsville Main between Fernbank and Brigade will finally be getting a sidewalk, sometime later this summer or early Spring.  And there's a roundabout being built to align the intersection at Shea and Fernbank.

Most of the meeting focused on big-picture urban planning strategy in Stittsville.  In just over 25 years, Stittsville's population has grown from about 500 people to 26,730 residents (as per the 2011 Census).  And by 2021, the population is projected to hit more than 47,000.  Like a massive game of SimCity, there are huge parcels of "greenfields" that have been carved up by Ottawa's urban planners, who've set a side space for homes, businesses, schools, parks, water treatment plants, transit lines, major roads and more.

Look at all that purple land waiting to be developed. Just like SimCity.
All of the boards and presentations will be up on Qadri's web site on Monday, but here are some of my rough notes from the meeting:
  • Lee Ann Snedden, Manager of Neighbourhood Sustainability, introduced the evening's speakers.  They included City Councillors Shad Qadri and Peter Hume (chair of the Planning Committee), and Michael Boughton and Charles Lanktree from the planning department.  John Moser watched from the sidelines - he's the general manager of planning and growth for Ottawa.
  • Fernbank.  The new Walmart at the corner of Fernbank and Terry Fox, and the model homes further north on Terry Fox, are the first developments in Fernbank, the biggest piece of development land in Stittsville.    More on the Fernbank plans here. (Of note - there's land for 3 secondary schools and 8 elementary schools included in the community layout.)
  • Kanata West. Another big block of land where development's already happening, it straddles the Queensway west of Terry Fox, roughly between Hazeldean Road and Richardson Side Road.  This is could be a very interesting urban area, with plans for a mix of commercial and residential buildings.  The new Tanger outlets development is coming soon north of the Queensway, and so is a huge block of housing across from Bell Sensplex / behind the Lowes.  And it's already home to Scotiabank Place, Bell Sensplex, and the police station.  Do a search for "Kanata West" on the City's web site and you'll get some idea of the development coming soon.  (Keeping score on schools - I counted land for one high school and four elementary schools in a planning map shown for this area.)
  • On Hazeldean Road, planners want to create an "arterial main street" that's pedestrian-oriented and more transit-friendly.  Here's an example - note the taller buildings, higher density, buildings (instead of parking lots) close to the road.

  • Photo of a slide from a presentation by Michael Boughton,
    City of Ottawa Program Manager, Development Review Process, Suburban West.
  • On Stittsville Main, planners asked for feedback about starting work on a Community Design Plan.  The City's done a few community design plans for traditional main streets in older parts of the city, and suggested that Stittsville Main could benefit from the same planning process to guide development along the street. City planner Charles Lanktree showed an example of a design plan showing the before-and-after vision for St. Joseph Boulevard in Orleans.  Is this kind of streetscape something that would work in Stittsville?
Before-and-after shot from St. Joseph Boulevard Corridor Study (PDF).
  • Roads. With all these new people and businesses in our community, they have to get around.  This map shows some of the new roads planned over the next decade.  Of note - Stittsville Main will eventually connect to Palladium Drive via Jackson Trails.  There's a new east-west road running south of Palladium Drive, and additional roads and transit cutting north and south parralel to Terry Fox.  This map shows a few of those future roads - it's not as up-to-date as the one that they showed at the meeting but it gives a rough idea of where roads are being built.  (I've asked the councillor for the newer version & will post here when I get it.)
Red = Existing Arterials / Broken Red = Proposed
Yellow = Existing Major Corridors / Broken Yellow = Proposed
Green = Existing Collectors / Broken Green = Green
Were you at the meeting last night?  What did you see that interests or concerns you?

If you're interested in planning and development in Stittsville, Shad Qadri's web site is a good place to start.  Also follow @stittsville_ont for neighourhood tweets.

See also: Ottawa City Hall Guide If you liked this post, please consider subscribing to our blog via email, Twitter, Facebook or RSS. Thank you.

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