For over 50 years, the NCC has been opening its scenic parkways for people to walk, cycle or roll on, an initiative that has been replicated in countless cities around the globe. In 2023, nearly 50 km of parkways on both sides of the river were transformed into a safe and environmentally friendly way to experience the beauty of the region.

The 2023 parkways program ran from May to early October. It took place on a varying schedule on the following parkways:

  • Queen Elizabeth Driveway 
  • Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway 
  • Kichi Zībī Mīkan 
  • Gatineau Park parkways 

2023 season highlights

Public feedback

69% of all survey respondents and 85% of program participants support program continuation.

Data collected through the NCC’s active use online survey indicates high levels of satisfaction and public support for the continuation of the parkways program. Over 69% of all respondents to the survey support or strongly support the continuation of the program. For program participants, this support jumps to 85%.

When asked about changes that would most improve their experience, program users said:

  • Extended hours (52%)
  • Extended length of parkways reserved for active use (56%)

Overall visits

The 2023 season of the Parkways Program received over 430K visits. Of these, there were over 186K on Gatineau Park parkways, over 133K on Queen Elizabeth Driveway, over 56K on Kichi Zībī Mīkan and over 55K on Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway.
Electronic counters installed at various locations also captured more than 430,000 visits.

Visits to Gatineau Park parkways

Over 186,000 visits between May 6 and September 22 

  • Average daily visits: 1,096 
  • Most popular activity: Biking (59%) 
  • Busiest month: July (over 38,000 visits) 
  • Satisfaction rate: 96% of users are very / generally satisfied
  • 20% of survey respondents took advantage of the free shuttle service in 2023 

Visits to Queen Elizabeth Driveway

Over 133,000 total visits between May 13 and October 9 

  • Average daily visits: 1,502 
  • Most popular activity: Biking (46%)
  • Busiest month: August (over 46,000 visits) 
  • Satisfaction rate: 88% of users are very / generally satisfied

Visits to Kichi Zībī Mīkan

Over 56,000 visits from May 13 to October 9 

  • Average daily visits: 1,152 
  • Most popular activity: Biking (62%) 
  • Busiest month: September (over 20,000 visits) 
  • Satisfaction rate: 92% of users are very / generally satisfied 

Visits to Sir George-Étienne Cartier Parkway

Over 55,000 total visits between May 13 and October 9 

  • Average daily visits: 1,173 
  • Most popular activity: Biking (67%) 
  • Busiest month: July (over 13,000 visits) 
  • Satisfaction rate: 97% of users are very / generally satisfied 


There were over 10,600 survey respondents, of which 78% were participants in the parkways program and 22% were not.

The NCC collected public feedback through an online survey, which ran from July 13 to October 20, 2023. The survey received a total of 10,686 responses, with 78% of responses from program users and 22% from non-users. Program users included cyclists, pedestrians, in-line skaters, skateboarders and wheelchair users. 

In addition to the survey, the NCC collected information throughout the season, as follows.

  • Onsite monitors on parkways in Ottawa (monitored daily from May 13 to October 9)
  • Electronic counters on all parkways
  • Engagement with stakeholders, including Dows Lake Residents Association, Glebe BIA, Glebe Community Association, Parkways for People, and Old Ottawa South Community Association.
  • Phone calls, emails and voicemails received by the NCC Contact Centre (over 500 queries were analyzed)

What’s next?

Continued monitoring is important to gain insights on usage and identify ways to improve the program in the future. The NCC will use this information and continue to work with stakeholders to plan for the 2024 iteration of its parkway program.


A comprehensive summary of the online survey findings will be available by summer 2024.

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