On April 11, the NCC Board of Directors met to discuss recent and upcoming projects. Here are some of the highlights presented in my Report on Activities.
- This year marks the 120th anniversary of planning in the Capital through the NCC and its predecessor organizations.
- In March the NCC launched a special web page to showcase stories about Capital features and attractions, as well as historical photographs, interactive maps, and blog posts.
Portage Bridge Rehabilitation
- This spring the NCC will install the barrier along the Portage Bridge separating the cycling lanes from motorized traffic.
- The construction began on March 30 and is expected to last until the end of June.
- The northbound lanes will be reduced to one lane during off-peak hours and two lanes during peak hours, during the construction work.
Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway LeBreton Bridge
- This bridge, part of the Sir John A. Macdonald Parkway between the Canadian War Museum and the Prince of Wales Bridge, is to be demolished and replaced.
- To minimize traffic disruption the NCC will build a temporary 4-lane detour road around the worksite. Construction of this detour will begin on May 15.
- The detour will have the same vehicular capacity as the current route.
- The speed limit on the detour route will be 40 kilometres per hour, compared to 60 for the rest of the Parkway.
- Once the detour is complete, the existing bridge will be demolished.
- Construction of the new bridge is scheduled to begin in July, and to be completed in summer of 2020.
Hog’s Back Swing Bridge
- The Hog’s Back Swing Bridge rehabilitation will begin late this summer and continue for about 10 months, with the work being completed in advance of the 2020 Canal navigation season.
- The bridge will undergo major rehabilitation, including:
- Replacement of the electrical systems;
- Upgrades to the mechanical systems that operate the bridge;
- And a series of other improvements.
- As a result of this extensive work, along with the reconstruction of the dam bridge being carried out by Parks Canada, Hog’s Back Road will be closed to traffic from late summer until May of 2020.
Rideau Canal Skateway
- This past season for the Rideau Canal Skateway was a remarkable, record-setting success, with almost 1.5 million visitors.
- The 49th season of skating on the Canal began on December 30 and wrapped up on March 10, during which the green flags were up for 59 days, well over the 5-year average of 39.
- This summer will see the launch of Phase 1 of the Champlain node of the South Shore Riverfront Park.
- This phase will consist of moving the existing parking area away from the shoreline.
- This summer the NCC will also begin work to make Richmond Landing universally accessible via a pathway from the Portage Bridge to the shoreline.
Gatineau Park Master Plan
- The NCC continues the work of renewing the Gatineau Park Master Plan.
- A series of public consultations on the land use concept and designations presented to this Board in January took place in February and early March.
- These consultations consisted of:
- a meeting with the Public Advisory Committee
- Public workshops held in Pontiac, Gatineau, La Pêche, and Chelsea;
- And an online survey.
- More than 1,000 people participated.
- The next phase of consultations will take place in mid-May.
- The NCC organized a Winter Carnival in February in Gatineau Park to help newcomers to Canada celebrate their first Canadian winter.
- About 100 new Canadians and many more members of the public took part in the festivities at the Visitor Centre, which included ball hockey, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, sledding, and making — and eating — maple taffy.
- They also enjoyed an Anishinabe cultural presentation.
- The 41st edition of the Gatineau Loppet took place from February 15th to 17th.
- More than 2,000 people participated, coming from every province and territory, as well as almost 20 other countries.