Run For Your Life On LRT, Jim Watson

ottawa logoThat dull roar you hear in the distance is the sound of sensible shoes on pavement as old west end residents march on Ottawa City Hall carrying axes and scythes looking for the mayor.

Run for your life, Jim Watson. Don’t mess with these Docker-clad grim reapers. They might have voted for you on Oct. 27 but now they want your head on a pike.

You see the city’s adamance in putting light rail through the old west end instead of on logical Carling Avenue has resulted in furious Scott Street and area residents voting our the lovable ex-councillor Katherine Hobbs, now on an extended tour of Europe. She, according to residents, didn’t take good care of the Light Rail Detour.

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City Website Returns

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

Ottawa.ca has now been restored, however, there may be delays in refresh times for some internet service providers.

We are confident that no corporate or resident information was compromised as a result of the breach.

Issues were related to a third party service provider and have since been resolved. Residents can continue to access city services by contacting 311.

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Warren Kinsella Still Punditing

Kinsella

Kinsella

I’m always surprised when some big important guy is caught reading The Bulldog.

No I don’t mean Mayor Jim Watson, our loyalist reader.

Nor former mayor Larry O’Brien who spits when he hears the two words Ken and Gray. O’Brien credits yours truly with single-handedly defeating him in the 2010 election. I’d love to take credit but it is too big an honour and must be shared. Still it’s nice to be mentioned.

Now golly wally guess who has been caught reading your humble Bulldog? Why none other than big Liberal guy and semi-professional pundit, the one, the only, Warren Kinsella.

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City Website Still Down

As of 7:52 a.m. Saturday morning, the City of Ottawa website (ottawa.ca) was still down. It looks as though it was hacked late Friday. No word on when it will be working again.

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City Of Ottawa Site Hacked

hacked

This is how the City of Ottawa Internet homepage looked last evening after hackers got at it.

It appears the City of Ottawa site has been hacked.

Friday night it was only carrying a message saying the site had been suspended.

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Byron Park In Jeopardy: Residents

This is a release from the Neighbours For Smart Western Rail:

Dear Neighbours,

Our community has been loud and clear about our commitment to protecting Byron Linear Park, the wonderful pedestrian artery of our community. Hundreds have spoken up about the negative impact that running a commuter train down Richmond Road would have on our neighbourhoods.

The city acknowledged our position more than a year ago, saying explicitly that any above-ground train along Richmond Road from Rochester Field “ruins Byron Linear Park” and “physically divides the community.”

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We Did Right Things At Level Crossing: City

These are two releases from the City of Ottawa on the level-crossing controversy on lines north of Barrhaven. Click on the highlighted words to see them below:

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NCC Compromise Gets LRT Wrong Again

carlingThe correct route for Ottawa’s troubled light-rail line. Carling Avenue.

Doesn’t anybody at the City of Ottawa or the National Capital Commission get it?

You put light rail through commercial, high-density residential or retail areas. Not through old areas of single-family homes with little population or business along them.

This NCC compromise would see the City of Ottawa punching light rail along the parkway to Rochester Field. At Rochester Field the NCC has allowed that the city to put the line above or below ground.

So that means for the first part of the line, the LRT will travel along the riverfront until it reaches Rochester Field where it would travel down Richmond Road … an area of low-density residential housing and scattered and small commercial and retail.

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NCC Proposes Rochester Field LRT

This is a release by the National Capital Commission:

Following its Board meeting this week, the National Capital Commission (NCC) has requested that the City of Ottawa include the Rochester Field–Richmond Road alignment in its ongoing environmental assessment study for the building of Phase 2 of the western light rail transit corridor.

“From the outset, the NCC has firmly supported the City of Ottawa’s light rail transit project,” said Dr. Mark Kristmanson, Chief Executive Officer of the National Capital Commission. “We have prioritized and completed 100 land transactions in record time in order to enable the construction of the first phase from Tunney’s Pasture to Blair Station.”

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Big Stuff On Parkway Light Rail

nccBig stuff is happening this morning. I bet Mayor Jim Watson is on pins and needles.

Here’s hoping the NCC recommends putting it somewhere other than the Macdonald Parkway and the city doesn’t slap it on the Byron Linear Park. Carling Avenue folks.

Memo to Russ Mills: Parkway light rail is bad planning but then you know that already. Do the right thing.

This is a release from the National Capital Commission:

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The Mayor As Puppet

Mayor Jim Watson touting Movember. He never looked so life-like.

First the Bobbleheads, now The Puppet.

Sounds a bit like a horror movie doesn’t it.

The movie-makers tried to get some of the Watson Party councillors to participate in this film but they couldn’t speak. They just smiled, nodded their little heads up and down, and helped hand out plaques.

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Why All The Watson?

Watson

Watson

People have been wondering about this.

Why so much comment on His Worship?

Well, he’s the only one speaking these days. Perhaps the other councillors have been cowed by his tactics. It would be nice if some of the other officials at city hall would screw up the courage to speak, too. If nothing but for variety’s sake.

But one does not want to step on the Mayor Jim Watson’s toes because, well, there goes the committee chair job. Perhaps it’s too late for The Bulldog to get a chair’s job. It’s lonely out here being the official opposition to a lousy administration with a really thick veneer of charm. Too bad the other media aren’t putting a critical eye on the mayor.

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Say It Ain’t So, Warren Kinsella

Oh this is a travesty.

The Bulldog uses a lot of posts from Liberal pundit Warren Kinsella’s blog.

Now the rascal is considering running in the 2015 federal election. Eek.

First we lose Katie Hobbs for material, now the ultimate backroom boy is sticking his name on a ballot. Kinsella will have to tout the party line.

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Watson’s Baseball Folly

Ottawa Champions

Ottawa Champions

The Ottawa Champions have named their new manager, former Major League Baseball great Hal Lanier.

You have to be a certain vintage to remember Lanier. That was my earliest vintage. Somehow the 18-34 age bracket might have missed him

Good luck to Lanier, not just on the field, but in the executive suite. Your agent has had an expert on minor-league baseball say that he doesn’t think the Champions will finish the season. We’ll see. The first incarnation of Can-Am League baseball … if that is the league they’re playing in … died after one season. So far, no local ownership.

But the franchise does have a president, none other than that Order of Ottawa award-winning friend of Mayor Jim Watson and professional resume-builder, David Gourlay. Now how did that happen?

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Get Real, Andrew Cohen

Someone really needs to tell Citizen columnist Andrew Cohen that $80 million is a lot of money.

That’s how much money the federal government is throwing at the Canada Science and Technology Museum to repair it and bring it up to standards.

Cohen laughs at building a new roof or facade. Earthquake proofing and fire protection appear funny until you’re in the building during one of the aforementioned calamities. And Cohen calls the museum a “mould-ridden institution.” Golly. Maybe it’s the roof?

What would a new museum cost? A billion maybe. A billion-and-a-half? Hard to say. If Cohen designed it, $3 billion.

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Chaudiere Project A Go

This is a release from Windmill Development Group:

Windmill Development Group has received the green light to proceed with its plans to transform the former Domtar lands into an accessible and breathtaking sustainability showpiece for the region.

At their Council meeting Tuesday evening, Ville de Gatineau councillors unanimously approved Windmill’s redevelopment plans for the brownfield site, which straddles Chaudière and Albert Islands and the adjacent riverfront in downtown Gatineau. Ottawa City Council approved Windmill’s plans onOctober 8th.

“We couldn’t be happier with the Council’s reaction to our proposal,” said Rodney Wilts, Partner, Windmill Development Group. “We’ve been very encouraged by the support from the Council and planning staff.”

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Santa Parade To Disrupt Traffic

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

Along with toys and goodies, Santa Claus may be delivering minor traffic disruptions on Saturday, November 22, starting at 11 a.m. during the 2014 Help Santa Toy Parade.

The City of Ottawa is advising motorists to expect delays due to road closures to accommodate the parade starting at 11 a.m. and lasting until about 1:30 p.m.

The following roads will be closed:

  • Eastbound lanes on Wellington Street from Old Wellington Street and Bank Street
  • Bank Street from Wellington Street to Laurier Avenue
  • Laurier Avenue from Bank Street to Ottawa City Hall

Roads will reopen as the parade passes.

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Bulldog Commenting Made Easier

We have rid The Bulldog of the dreaded captcha … you know, the funny letters you must fill in after you have commented to confirm you are not a spammer. That protects The Bulldog from being overwhelmed by automated spam. All you need to do now is check the box in the middle of the page above “Confirm you are NOT a spammer.” The check box is to the right and slightly below the “POST COMMENT” button. If you have any difficulty with this, email kengray20@gmail.com.

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Gourlay Piles Up The Plaques

Gourlay-OPL

David Gourlay tweeted out this honour late Monday evening.

 —

It has been another great day for president David Gourlay of the Ottawa Champions Baseball Club.

If you check the picture above, you will notice that Gourlay’s name is gracing the extremely rare awarding of the Certificate of Life Membership of the Ottawa Public Library. He tweeted the above photo out through his Twitter account that features him with Mayor Jim Watson.

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The Order of Ottawa Spin

So on Monday at the bylaw factory on Laurier Avenue, the David Gourlay Order of Ottawa post on this city’s foremost news site named after a dog was the talk of the gathered politicos and public servants.

From the highest echelons of Ottawa City Hall, the post was being spun as an attack (yes an ATTACK … AN ATTACK) on city staff.

Not even a small amount of truth to that from the person who penned the post.

It was not directed at city staff nor was it an attack. The post was a news item on an issue of public interest. That issue was: Should the Order of Ottawa, created by Jim Watson and now in its third year, be dispensed to some of the really worthy people in the community or should it be given to friends? Is it the high honour the mayor originally intended it for (a la Order of Canada or Order of Ontario) or is it a political vehicle to honour friends?

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Dave Smith Or Gourlay: You Be The Judge

Napoleon

Napoleon

Your agent did a little run-through on the recipients for Mayor Jim Watson’s Order of Ottawa (friends edition) and noticed a glaring omission.

Dave Smith.

The proprietor of the landmark Nate’s Deli, who has raised more than $100 million for charities, has had a street named after him, but the Order of Ottawa has eluded him in its three annual incarnations. Wow. That’s an oversight of major proportions.

It’s like ignoring Napoleon in Paris. That would be wrong.

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Watson’s Post-Vote Quips: Top 10 List

Watson

Watson

Now the story can be told.

The Bulldog hid a microphone in a secret enclave deep in the bowels of Re-elect Jim Watson for Mayor 2014 headquarters.

This is where all the great strategy was formulated to defeat would-be mayor Mike Maguire. And it worked … Watson got 77 per cent of the popular vote.

So here is what the microphone picked up on Oct. 27 election night:

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Ottawa Watches Toronto UBER Case

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

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Do You Like It LOUD?

Ottawa Magazine’s Anne DesBrisay goes to the restaurant Ace Mercado where all the noise doesn’t come from the kitchen:

“There Goes the Neighbourhood” was the opening slogan of Ace Mercado, punctuated with cartoon dynamite booms.

There went my ear drums that first visit. And the next. The volume of the music played at Ace has waxed and waned a bit over my three meals here, but is generally at ear ringing level by eight o’clock.

We move to the back room and find we can just hear each other if we holler.

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Strong Mayor? Weak Mayor? Who Cares?

Here’s some interesting research on the structure of city government and how the shape of it really doesn’t matter.

According to new research, no urban governance structure — whether a strong mayor system or a weak mayor system — is necessarily better at implementing the policies their constituents actually support. Policies enacted by municipal governments of all stripes tend to be a pretty good reflection of their electorate’s ideological preferences, as it turns out.

Political scientists Chris Tausanovitch of UCLA and Christopher Warshaw of MIT aggregated a collection of nationwide survey results to determine the political leanings of 1,600 U.S. cities and towns.

They then paired those results with the types of government structures used by those same municipal governments, and compared each one to a 2010 survey that outlined the social, political, and environmental policies enacted by each individual local government body.

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