LED lights are saving the City energy and money

The City of Ottawa is in the process of converting 58,000 streetlights to Light Emitting Diode (LED) technology, an initiative that, upon completion, will save the City an estimated $6 million annually.

The work is being done in partnership with Energy Ottawa, a subsidiary of Hydro Ottawa. Under the agreement, Energy Ottawa will install and maintain the new light infrastructure over a six-year period.

“I’m pleased to see the City of Ottawa and Energy Ottawa working together to spend money, energy and resources more efficiently,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “Even at this early stage of the conversion, we are already experiencing savings.”

Street lighting accounts for 17 per cent of the electricity used by the City. The conversion is expected to reduce energy consumption by 50 per cent per fixture. Since converting 750 lights on Carling Avenue in 2015, the City is already saving more than $72,000 annually.

“The City of Ottawa is committed to energy management as a key component of its operations,” said Councillor Keith Egli, Chair of the City’s Transportation Committee. “Extensive improvements in efficiency, output, and costs of LED over the last few years have made this technology the best choice for Ottawa residents, both in our neighbourhoods and in our wallets.”

In addition to energy reduction, the LED infrastructure provides the following benefits:

  • reduced maintenance costs
  • automatic notifications when lights fail
  • greater light control
  • greater light quality
  • reduced light pollution

“Streetlights beautify our neighbourhoods and make our city a safer place to live,” said Bryce Conrad, President and CEO of Hydro Ottawa. “This was true in 1885, when Ottawa became the first city in the world to light all of its streets with electricity, and it’s true today as we update streetlights to energy-efficient LED technology that will decrease light pollution, improve light ambiance and save Ottawa residents millions of dollars in electricity every year.”

Mayor Watson announces Cher and many more high-profile world leaders & celebrities attending 2016 One Young World Summit

Opening Ceremony to take place on Parliament Hill

Ottawa, ON – Today, Mayor Jim Watson announced the high-profile names of world leaders from politics, entertainment, business and the community who will be attending the 2016 One Young World Summit taking place in Ottawa from September 28 to October 1, 2016. The Summit, which is considered the world’s premier global youth forum, will welcome 1,300 exceptional young leaders aged 18-30 from around the globe.  Attendees will be treated to a dynamic and colourful opening ceremony, which will take place on the lawn of Parliament Hill.

“One Young World 2016 marks the first time the forum will take place in Canada and we are very excited to welcome the world to our city,” said Mayor Watson. “There are still opportunities for organizations to engage with this Summit to ensure Ottawa’s top young leaders are represented. Companies and organizations can still get involved through sponsorship and visibility opportunities as well as hosting breakout sessions and even home dinners for delegates.”

The line-up of distinguished One Young World Counsellors that will be speaking at the Summit and mentoring delegates includes:

  • Kofi Annan, former UN Secretary General
  • Cher, Activist and Musician
  • Professor Muhammad Yunus, Nobel Peace Prize Laureate
  • Sir Bob Geldof, Activist and Musician
  • Mary Robinson, UN Special Envoy for Climate
  • Senator Murray Sinclair, Senator and former chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission
  • Jon Landau, Oscar winning producer of Titanic and Avatar
  • Minister Marc Garneau, First Canadian in Space and Minister of Transport
  • Harley Finkelstein, COO Shopify
  • Full counsellor list available at ottawatourism.ca/OYWmedia

“Hosting One Young World is a real feather in Ottawa’s cap,” said Michael Crockatt, President and CEO of Ottawa Tourism. “Showcasing our innovative and exciting city to such a diverse group of current and future leaders is an honour, and to be able to incorporate Parliament Hill, one of the most recognizable symbols of Canada, is particularly special.”

The One Young World Summit Opening Ceremony on the lawn of Parliament Hill on September 28, 2016 will showcase Canada’s diverse culture, a 196-nation flag ceremony as well as One Young World Counselors, community leaders and senior government leaders.

One Young World’s Canada Director, Antoine Pouliot remarked “One Young World is excited to be coming to Canada for the first time this fall, with our best-ever lineup of high-profile Counsellors and what promises to be a world-class opening at one of Canada’s most cherished landmarks. Young leaders are the centre of so many of the changes making our city into the vibrant, innovative and diverse capital that it is.”

Over 100 blue-chip companies have made One Young World an integral part of their development of global talent and corporate social responsibility initiatives, with companies increasing the size of their delegations each year.  With AB Inbev and Barclays as strategic partners, One Young World 2016 will also feature an A-Z of companies including Coca-Cola, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, Facebook, Google, Janssen, KPMG, L’Oreal, Siemans, Telefonica, Unilever, Volkswagen and Westpac.

Ottawa Tourism thanks the members of its One Young World Advisory Board, Local Organizing Committee and especially those companies and organizations which are hosting breakout sessions and/or which have committed to sponsoring the Summit, including Destination Canada; its Canadian Advisory Partner, KPMG; EY; and Microsoft Canada.

“Destination Canada is also pleased to support One Young World 2016 in Ottawa,” says David Goldstein, President & CEO of Destination Canada. “We know that these young leaders from around the world are drawn to Canada’s vibrant cities, cultural attractions and welcoming people. We encourage delegates to take some time to explore what Canada has to offer.”

Ottawa was chosen to host One Young World because it is a leading global capital that knows the value of young leaders. A challenge has been extended to the Ottawa community to ensure that 30 of its top young leaders will represent Canada's capital at the Summit. Local businesses and organizations are encouraged to attend, or to support the attendance of local delegates. To learn more, e-mail OYWdelegates@ottawatourism.ca to ensure Ottawa’s top young stars will represent at the 2016 One Young World Summit.

About One Young World

Founded by David Jones, founder of You & Mr. Jones, and Kate Robertson former Global President, Havas Worldwide, the annual One Young World Summit is a unique event that offers international decision makers powerful insight into where our world may be heading.

Since its inception, One Young World has hosted over 7,000 delegates between the ages of 18-30. No youth-dominated event other than the Olympic games represents as many countries as One Young World does. The reach of the event is exemplified as 8.9 million people have already been positively affected by delegate-led initiatives.

More specifically, One Young World ambassadors are directly responsible for:

  • Immunising 1-in-3 children worldwide
  • Providing 94 million meals in 63 countries
  • Catalysing the first LGBT+ movement in Iraq
  • Founding the first rape crisis centre in Somalia
  • Supporting 10,000 health workers in 23 countries
  • Delivering free healthcare to 5,000 people in Oman
  • Educating over 80,000 people during the Ebola outbreak in Sierra Leone

The key areas of focus at the 2016 Summit in Ottawa will include:

  • Education
  • Global Business
  • Health
  • Human Rights
  • Peace and Security
  • Environment
  • Indigenous Reconciliation

To date, Summits have taken place in London (2010), Zurich (2011), Pittsburgh (2012), Johannesburg (2013), Dublin (2014) and Bangkok (2015).

For more information about the Summit, please visit: www.oneyoungworld.com or follow @OneYoungWorld or @OYWOttawa

For more information on City programs and services, visit ottawa.ca or call 3-1-1 (TTY: 613-580-9656).  You can also connect with us through Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

Mayor Jim Watson's statement on the passing of the Hon. Mauril Bélanger, M.P. for Ottawa-Vanier

I was deeply saddened to hear of Mauril Bélanger’s passing. I have had the privilege of meeting Mauril on many occasions, both as a Member of Parliament representing Ottawa-Vanier, and when he was Chief of Staff to the Chair of the Regional Council of Ottawa-Carleton when I served on the Regional Council. I will remember Mauril as a kind, dedicated and passionate man who sought and achieved positive change through his relentless passion for human rights, his strong advocacy for Ontario's Francophone community, and in the past year, his work with the ALS Society of Canada. I send my condolences to Catherine, his spouse, and to his family, his friends and to all those whose lives he has touched.

Ottawa International Airport becomes Official Supporter of Ottawa 2017 celebrations

Major gateway to the city will be decked out in festive pageantry

Ottawa – The Ottawa 2017 Bureau and Mayor Jim Watson, in collaboration with lead partner CIBC, are proud to welcome the Ottawa International Airport as an Official Supporter of Canada’s 150th anniversary celebrations in the nation’s capital. The world class facility announced today a contribution of $1 million in support of Ottawa 2017.

As part of the partnership, the Ottawa International Airport will install Ottawa 2017 pageantry items throughout the building as well as roadway banners outside, a small sampling of which were on display at today’s announcement.

“As Canada’s capital, our airport acts as a prime gateway for visitors from the rest of the country and around the world, making it an essential location to give a good first impression and set the tone for the celebrations,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “This is where we first unveiled our logo a little over three years ago, so it’s fitting that we return to the Ottawa International Airport to announce this major step forward with our city-wide Ottawa 2017 pageantry program.”

“More than 4.6 million passengers pass through the Ottawa International Airport on yearly basis, and we expect that number to grow with Canada’s 150th birthday just around the corner,” said Mark Laroche, President and CEO of the Ottawa International Airport Authority. “Ottawa 2017 celebrations are sure to draw more tourists to our city. As a proud member of the community, we’re rolling out a warm welcome at our airport to ensure that from the moment visitors touch down, they’ll sense the excitement and feel part of something special.”

“We’re proud of the high calibre of businesses that have joined the Ottawa 2017 group of partners and we welcome the Ottawa International Airport to the family,” said Monique Giroux, Vice-President, Sponsorship Marketing & Strategic Partnerships, CIBC. “Transportation hubs like this bring Canadians together, which will be even more pronounced next year when we’re celebrating our country’s sesquicentennial.”

Guy Laflamme, Executive Director of the Ottawa 2017 Bureau noted that, “in addition to the ubiquitous Ottawa 2017 pageantry, there will be the opportunity to feature some of the major Signature Events at the airport as well, giving travellers a flavour of the events taking place when they arrive,” he said. “We thank Mark Laroche and the team at the Ottawa International Airport – a success story in its own right – for their role in contributing to the festive spirit of the celebrations.”

Canada’s 150th celebrations will offer Canadians and visitors from around the world an exceptional and memorable year of exciting experiences while bringing a record number of visitors to Ottawa in 2017 to celebrate this important milestone for our country.

Ottawa 2017 thanks our lead partner CIBC, premier partner Bell, and the Government of Canada for their contributions in helping to deliver twelve full months of bold events, immersive experiences and all-out celebrations.

Photos for media use, courtesy Ottawa 2017: http://ow.ly/WntCV

Stay informed on plans for Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations in the capital. Visit ottawa2017.ca, follow us on Twitter @2017ottawa (#Ottawa2017) and on Facebook.

Tickets go on sale tomorrow for the Interprovincial Picnic on the Bridge

ACE Bakery the Official Bread of Ottawa 2017

Ottawa – Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson, Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin of Gatineau, the Ottawa 2017 Bureau, in collaboration with lead partner CIBC and Gatineau 2017, are happy to announce that tickets to the Interprovincial Picnic on the Bridge will go on sale at 10 a.m. tomorrow. Ottawa 2017 is also pleased to welcome ACE Bakery® as an Official Supplier and the Official Bread for the celebrations of Canada’s 150th anniversary in the nation’s capital.

A Canadian first, the Interprovincial Picnic on the Bridge will take place on the Alexandra Bridge on July 2, 2017. The iconic steel truss structure that spans the Ottawa River between Ontario and Quebec will be transformed into a lush grassy haven for the event which will feature entertainment, samplings – including fresh baked breads from ACE Bakery – surprise giveaways and one of the most breathtaking views in the country.

Tickets for a picnic area on the bridge are $40 (plus tax and service charges) and can accommodate a maximum of four people. Seatings will take place at 11 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 4 p.m. and 6:30 pm and will run for 1.5 hours each. Specific spots on the bridge can be selected online. Capacity for each seating is 650 people. Participants are invited to pack their favourite picnic items to dine on, or purchase pre-made baskets from a number of local food vendors who will be on-site July 2, 2017.

To purchase tickets, visit Ottawa2017.ca.

“Canada’s Capital Region is set to offer an array of activities to mark the 150th anniversary of Confederation in 2017. The Government of Canada has provided a total of $5 million to support many of these activities in Ottawa, including the picnic on the Alexandra Bridge—which promises to be a memorable celebration,” said the Honourable Mélanie Joly, Minister of Canadian Heritage. “The year 2017 is going to be an extraordinary one, and I encourage you to join the party!”

“We’re delighted to offer Canadians the opportunity to gather together in celebration of Canada’s sesquicentennial at the ideal location to honour our country’s founding nations: a bridge that connects our French and English roots, over a waterway that is so significant to Aboriginal culture,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “The savoury partnership between ACE Bakery, a Canadian success story, and Ottawa 2017 will enable us to showcase fresh Canadian products to residents and visitors, enhancing their experience and boosting the positive impact that the celebrations have on our local economy.”

“The Interprovincial Picnic on the Bridge, a joint initiative between the Ville de Gatineau and City of Ottawa, will showcase our two cities and celebrate both our unity and our diversity,” said Mayor Pedneaud-Jobin. “What will make it even more special is that the MosaïCanada 150 exhibition will be newly opened and picnickers can plan to make this free Gatineau 2017 event part of their outing.”

“As a proud Canadian company and one of North America’s leading artisan bakeries, we are honoured that ACE Bakery will be the Official Bread for the Ottawa 2017 celebrations,” said Sophia Rouleau, Marketing and Communications Manager, ACE Bakery. “We truly believe bread is a joy to make and a joy to share with others, so this is a great opportunity to invite everyone to discover great bread while celebrating Canada’s 150th birthday!”

In addition to supplying bread for Picnic on the Bridge participants to share with their family and friends, ACE Bakery products will also be served at other yet-to-be-announced Ottawa 2017 culinary events.

“Canada’s 150th anniversary is the perfect chance to work with and highlight Canadian businesses who contribute so much to our community,” said Monique Giroux, Vice-President, Sponsorship Marketing & Strategic Partnerships, CIBC. “From one home-grown company to another, we welcome ACE Bakery to the Ottawa 2017 partnership group and look forward to creating memorable – and tasty – experiences with them for all Canadians to enjoy.”

“We are excited to open ticket sales for the Picnic on the Bridge, and it will be an even more delicious experience thanks to our partners at ACE Bakery,” said Guy Laflamme, Executive Director of the Ottawa 2017 Bureau. “The sight of thousands of picnic-goers breaking bread together on the Alexandra Bridge as we celebrate our country’s 150th anniversary will create magnificent visuals that will be shared around the globe on social media and generate international media coverage.”

“We are proud to participate in this joint activity with the Ottawa 2017 Bureau and, in collaboration with Outaouais Tourism, we will develop a program of family activities for July 2 to welcome residents and visitors," added Nathalie Brunette, Project Manager of the Gatineau 2017 Committee.

Canada’s 150th celebrations will offer Canadians and visitors from around the world an exceptional and memorable year of high-caliber experiences while bringing a record number of visitors to Ottawa in 2017 to celebrate this important milestone for our country.

Ottawa 2017 thanks our lead partner CIBC, premier partner Bell, and the Government of Canada for their contributions in helping to deliver twelve full months of bold events, immersive experiences and all-out celebrations.

Photos for media use, courtesy Ottawa 2017: http://ow.ly/WntCV

Stay informed on plans for Canada’s 150th birthday celebrations in the capital. Visit ottawa2017.ca, follow us on Twitter @2017ottawa (#Ottawa2017) and on Facebook.

Ottawa cyclists pedal through two million trips on Laurier lanes

The Laurier Avenue cycling lanes, built to establish a safe bicycle corridor through Ottawa’s downtown, have reached a milestone with two million bike trips since its opening in 2011.

“The Laurier cycling lanes are a proven success, attracting more and more residents who are appreciative of this route through our busy downtown. We frequently see more than 3,000 trips a day along Laurier and there are times when there are nearly as many bikes as there are cars,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “Our residents deserve credit for taking advantage of this important piece of our transportation system, using it as a way to improve personal health and reduce the number of automobiles on the road.”

“The Laurier lanes are now a core part of our Cross-Town Bikeway network, which is being built in the eight central wards to provide safer, continuous cycling facilities,” said Councillor Keith Egli, Chair of the City’s Transportation Committee. “The network was just 25-per-cent complete when the Laurier bike lanes were opened in 2011 as a pilot project. Our plan is for that network to be 71-per-cent complete by the end of this Term of Council, in 2018, which shows the City of Ottawa is serious about making cycling a real transportation alternative for our residents.”

The initial 1.3-kilometre segment of the Laurier cycling lanes has since been extended both eastward and westward and is part of a 12-kilometre-long bikeway connecting Vanier to Westboro. This east-west route is Bicycle Route #2 within the City’s Cross-Town Bikeway network.

On Laurier Avenue West, more than 4,000 bike trips were recorded through the day on Wednesday, June 29. On that day, the bike traffic reached 80 per cent of peak vehicle traffic during the morning rush hour.

The City made major investments in cycling infrastructure totalling $28 million between 2011 and 2014. Plans for further implementing the City’s Cycling Plan between now and 2031 include projects totalling more than $100 million.

Ottawa 2017 applauds Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group for Grey Cup touchdown

CFL championship to take place in the nation’s capital for Canada’s 150th anniversary

Ottawa – The Ottawa 2017 Bureau and Mayor Jim Watson are thrilled that the 2017 Grey Cup game and Festival will be hosted in Ottawa and congratulate the Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG) for their leadership role in securing this prestigious sporting event and national celebration.

“I’m very happy and proud that we’ve collectively succeeded in having Ottawa selected to host the Grey Cup and Festival during Canada’s sesquicentennial and anticipate that this will be one of the highlights of our year-long celebrations,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “Having this Canadian tradition return to Ottawa has been part of our vision for 2017 from the start and supports the City’s tourism development strategy of attracting major sporting events that will create jobs in the tourism industry throughout the year.”

“We are honoured and excited to have the opportunity to host a week of festivities to help cap-off a spectacular, year-long celebration produced by Ottawa 2017,” said Bernie Ashe, CEO of OSEG. “The Grey Cup is the highest rated uniquely Canadian sporting event, by far. It will entertain Canadians from coast to coast to coast and generate $100 million in local economic activity. It would not have been possible without the support of Mayor Watson, City Council and the group of fans that have gained a reputation as the best in the CFL: RNation.”

Ottawa 2017 and Ottawa Tourism will support OSEG by offsetting a portion of the municipal services required to host the game and week of activities leading up to it. In addition, Ottawa 2017 will help create a festive spirit across the city by assisting with pageantry and finding innovative ways to ensure that residents from across the city are engaged in the event coming to Ottawa.

“We commend the team at OSEG for their hard work in clinching the Grey Cup for next year, which will greatly add to the excitement of the celebrations planned in Ottawa for Canada’s 150th birthday,” said Guy Laflamme, Executive Director of the Ottawa 2017 Bureau. “This presents another excellent opportunity to showcase our nation’s capital, Canadian culture and Canadian sporting excellence through broadcast and social media platforms to millions of people across the country and around the world.”

Canada’s 150th anniversary celebrations will offer Canadians and visitors an exceptional and memorable year of high-caliber experiences while bringing a record number of visitors to Ottawa in 2017 to celebrate this important milestone for our country.

Ottawa 2017 thanks its lead partner CIBC, premier partner Bell, and the Government of Canada for their contributions in helping to deliver twelve full months of bold events, immersive experiences and all-out celebrations.

Mayor Watson's statement on the passing of Mr. Abdirahman Abdi

Released on Tuesday, July 26


I was saddened to hear of Mr. Abdirahman Abdi’s passing on July 25, and would like to express my sincere condolences to his family, friends and neighbours. It is always concerning when a life is lost in our City, and my thoughts are with Mr. Abdi’s family and friends during this difficult time.

I am confident that Ontario’s Special Investigations Unit will conduct a fair and thorough investigation that will provide comprehensive insight into this tragic incident.

City of Ottawa and Ottawa Champions baseball team invite residents to join in honouring Max Keeping on Saturday

The City of Ottawa and the Ottawa Champions baseball team are inviting residents to remember popular local community builder Max Keeping, by filling the RCGT Park baseball stadium for the ball game on Saturday, July 16, at 7 p.m., when the Champions will host the Rockland Boulders.

The game will be preceded at 6:30 p.m. with a short ceremony renaming the Coventry Pedestrian and Cycling Bridge over Highway 417 the Max Keeping Bridge in honour of the late broadcaster, community booster, longtime booster of baseball in our city, and tireless advocate and fundraiser for vulnerable and sick children and youth in Ottawa.

Mr. Keeping helped raise more than $100 million for organizations such as the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), Roger’s House, the United Way, the Boys and Girls Club, Operation Come Home and the Cancer Foundation.

In recognition of his generosity, the Ottawa Champions will donate $1 to CHEO from each ticket to the July 16 game that is purchased in advance.

Mayor Jim Watson and David Gourlay, president of the Ottawa Champions Baseball Club, encourage residents to buy a ticket, enjoy the ball game as the Champions play the Rockland Boulders, and take a moment to remember Max — a local hero who changed countless lives for the better.

The Max Keeping Bridge connects the Overbrook community, Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton Park (baseball stadium), the Via Rail station and the future Tremblay Station of the O-Train Confederation Line.

REDBLACKS touchdowns will be converted to trees at Trim Park and Ride

As if you needed another reason to cheer on the Ottawa REDBLACKS, here is one more. For each touchdown the REDBLACKs score at TD Place Stadium this season, a tree will be planted at the OC Transpo Trim Park and Ride.

The end result will be The REDBLACKS Forest, a partnership between the City of Ottawa and the REDBLACKS parent company, Ottawa Sports and Entertainment Group (OSEG).

“Ottawa football fans who cheer-on the REDBLACKS can also celebrate the addition of green space, one touchdown and one tree at a time,” said Mayor Watson. “The REDBLACKS Forest is a great example of the City’s commitment to support an environmentally sustainable Ottawa.”

The trees will be planted in fall 2016 or spring 2017, weather permitting, and will be a mix of different species. They will be planted at the Trim Park and Ride in recognition of the thousands of football fans who use transit services to get to the games.

“This initiative adds a new dimension to our touchdown story and extends it to the entire community,” said Bernie Ashe, CEO of OSEG. “As fans know, we saw through a log with a chainsaw when we score a touchdown at TD Place and present those log slices (wood cookies), which are symbols of excellence, to community heroes. Now, we’re creating a forest of trees for the future and, with the exciting offence we’ve seen so far, it looks like it could be a very large forest.”

Last season, the REDBLACKS scored 35 touchdowns at TD Place (10 regular season games and one playoff).

For more information on the REDBLACKS, visit REDBLACKS.com or connect with the team via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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