Have you seen the #CBCStreetTalk team in your neighbourhood? Our local CBC Ottawa team has been busy visiting city wards to speak with residents about local issues (because unless you have your head buried in the sand, you'll know that we have upcoming municipal elections on October 27th!)
The question they're asking is: What would make your neighbourhood a better place to live?
This got me thinking about ways I would like to improve my own neighbourhood. Choosing where to live in a city is a tough decision - many middle class families can't afford the trendy and vibrant areas like Westboro, Hintonburg and the Glebe. And although I sometimes yearn to be closer to downtown, I do appreciate the big property and quiet that comes with suburban living.
But I want to have my cake and eat it too! How come I can't live in a trendy suburban neighbourhood? Most of us in the older part of Orleans are within walking distance to St. Joseph - but the walkability of our ward is dismal. Who wants to walk around places when you could break your ankle on a broken sidewalk or get run over by a speeding car?
Those complaints aside, I love my neighbourhood and I can't wait to see it flourish! So here's my wish list for Orleans, Ward 1:
- A great local coffee shop within walking distance (bonus points if the coffee shop has a playroom for kiddies!)
- A redesigned "Main Street" (St. Joseph) - making it pedestrian and cyclist friendly
- More healthy, fabulous restaurants using local ingredients
- A revival of the Ottawa Farmer's Market, which seems to be dying a slow death in Orleans
- Ottawa River Action Plan for the health of our river and Petrie Island!
- More attention paid to the trail system in Queenswood Heights - the bridges which are being replaced have been chained off for over a year now. There was also a major landslide down there, and I'd love to hear how this will be cleaned up and future stability managed.
- Future LRT (check out this fascinating idea about demolishing the Queensway!)
- Promotion of cycling to downtown - I discovered this past year it only takes me 1 hour and 15 minutes to bike to work (if that seems crazy to you, it's also possible to bike partway and bus partway). We need more education around safe cycling, and campaigns to get more people on their bikes!
So tell me, how would you make your neighbourhood a better place to live?