The City of Ottawa has laid out dozens, if not hundreds, of potential cycling and pedestrian projects it could undertake in years to come, and wants the public to weigh in on the most important missing links.
The city recently released the first half of what will become Ottawa's next master plan for transportation, which will ultimately be approved by a new city council in the next term.
Staff laid out 70 goals for the transportation network, such as assessing the risk of increased flooding from climate change, expanding the winter cycling network, and updating truck route planning because of concerns over interprovincial traffic downtown or near new warehouses.
Staff members also created maps with candidate projects for cycling and walking.
As part of the online consultation, residents can see suggestions very specific to their neighbourhoods, and choose whether such a project is important to them.
For instance, is it important for Brian Coburn Boulevard in Orléans to have a multi-use pathway, or for Clyde Avenue to have segregated bike lanes? Perhaps a sidewalk is needed on Moodie Drive near Crystal Bay Centre for Special Education.
The city is looking for feedback until Feb. 7, 2022 so draft policies can go to committee and council next spring for approval.
List of priciest projects to come in 2024
The transportation master plan is an important document that guides many city decisions — past versions set out priorities that led to construction of the first and second stages of the light rail system.
An update has been a long time coming. The current master plan being followed dates back to 2013.
City staff had to delay gathering critical data when the pandemic hit because it transformed residents' day-to-day travel patterns.
The survey will help staff come up with a new list of road, transit, cycling and pedestrian projects the city should prioritize. Staff will also set out the cost of the work, what the city can afford, as well as suggested timelines.
The second important infrastructure plan for the transportation network is due in 2024, to be dealt with by a new city council.
Councillors tend to take great interest in what makes that short list. Residents have been frustrated when projects such as realigning Greenbank Road in Barrhaven or taking bus rapid transit to south Orléans, for instance, are only on the books for the far future.