FULL LOCAL: Where Ottawa Comes First


Your fastest, most complete Ottawa-area news summary is here at Full Local.


Full Local brings you the best in Ottawa news, information and opinion from the city’s news sites and blogs – all in real time.

The feed for Planetizen, the leading source of city planning and design, is also supplied here to make Ottawa a better place.

Full Local is below:

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YOUR COMMENTS: Ottawa’s Sound And The Fury

YOUR COMMENTSNow you have a voice.anger

Here are the latest comments on The Bulldog and Bulldog Canadian.

Let your opinions be heard. You can write your comments on the end of the appropriate post or use the comment box below. One way or the other, they’ll appear here within 30 minutes of being moderated.

The Bulldog believes in freedom of speech. Exercise it here. The latest comments to The Bulldog and Bulldog Canadian are below:

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Second Taxi Review Report Awarded

ottawa logoKPMG and two other firms have been chosen to conduct the taxi regulations review.

Below is the release from the City of Ottawa:

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Taxi Reports Plumb Depths of Cynicism



Your agent has seen many political screw-ups but the taxi report mess is a classic.

For three years, Mayor Jim Watson and former community and protective services chairman Mark Taylor (a very loyal Watson ally) delayed a report that was to cover all facets of the taxi industry … for three years.

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Beaches: It’s All About Jim

So recent media reports say keeping the city’s beaches open for young and old alike would have cost an extra $10,000.

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Watson Ignores English Outaouais



Does English Outaouais not matter?

Mayor Jim Watson in his showboating tour of the federal election will hold a bilingual meeting at Ottawa City Hall on issues concerning local interest.

Gatineau Mayor Maxime Pedneaud-Jobin will hold a French-language debate in Gatineau.

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Why Is Watson Showboating?

So why is Mayor Jim Watson showboating by diving into the federal election stressing local issues?

That’s because if you really want to make progress on local issues with the federal government, you don’t publicly embarrass the feds and shame them.

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City Sat On Taxi Report For 3 Years



The City of Ottawa has commissioned a new $300,000 report on the taxi industry despite failing to release a staff report on the issue commissioned more than three years ago.

The city maintains the document, first requested in April 2012, was targeted to be completed in the already past second quarter of 2015, according to a published report. It has still not been released.

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Brockington, Deans Step Into Leadership Void



River Councillor Riley Brockington has taken over the role Mayor Jim Watson should be playing in the airport-taxi driver dispute.

“I’m very concerned when major arterial roads are clogged at peak times when many other residents of the city have nothing to do with this current situation are being impacted,” said Brockington, the councillor in whose ward the dispute is occurring.

A councillor doesn’t have the prestige or high office of the mayor to bring the principals of a dispute into a room to try to find a compromise. But at least Brockington is speaking out. Watson just said he didn’t have jurisdiction and turtled.

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Plasco Has Human Loss

The demise of Plasco Energy Group is disappointing because of the ruined environmental opportunity and the loss of jobs and profits. Such a shame.

But there is a bigger cost than that.

Plasco raised more than $300 million to finance the project.

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Beach Closings: Watson Gets His Comeuppence

First George in The Magnificent Ambersons gets his comeuppance. Now Jim Watson gets his from the gods of beaches.

In Orson Welles’ great film The Magnificent Ambersons, we wait through the whole movie for George to get his “comeuppance.”

It only took to mid-August for Mayor Jim Watson to get his.

You see Watson has this obsession (something to do with votes, no doubt) of making an arbitrary target for an annual operating tax increase of two per cent. Then he beats the target by a bit. Good PR.

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Thank Goodness: NCC Serves Democracy

nccPerhaps we are supposed to be outraged that the National Capital Commission had no choice about approving the Memorial to the Victims of Communism near Parliament Hill.

One hopes not.

Crown corporation or not, the public service in all its forms serves at the behest of our elected officials. And we wouldn’t want it any other way. Remember … it’s a democracy.

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I’m Helpless On Cab Dispute: Watson



Can’t fix cab dispute, Your Worship? You can try.

The office of Ottawa’s mayor carries with it a great deal of prestige and respect.

Or at least it once did. From ex-mayor Larry O’Brien going forward, the prestige of the office has dropped markedly. O’Brien was a loose cannon. The current model, Jim Watson, is so political a sweet politician that it makes your teeth ache. Put some variety in your life, Your Worship … take a stand.

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City Plans Go Disastrously Wrong: Reader



Bulldog contributor Sheridan weighs in on the planning screwups at Ottawa City Hall:

During the 2010 Ottawa mayoral election, Clive Doucet presented an extensive plan for a downtown surface LRT route which would have extended along Carling.

It was less expensive (no tunnel or expensive stations), could be constructed more quickly, and was the most “sustainable” route (according to his research).

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All The LRT Conjecture That’s Unfit To Print

lrt tweet

There are times when putting out The Bulldog and dealing with some people who read it drives you bananas.

This is one of those times.

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Senator Or Rat? How To Tell The Difference



Local extermination companies are reporting that they’ve never had to deal with so many rat infestations in Ottawa.

Why some of them are the size of footballs, they say.

Officials are saying it’s because of all the construction in town and particularly the drilling of Ottawa’s new light-rail system.

But these folks had best remember that light-rail drilling is close to Parliament Hill so exterminators should be very careful about what breed of rat they’re putting down.

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Orleans Intersection To Close

This is a release from the City of Ottawa:

The intersection of Brian Coburn Boulevard and Portobello Boulevard will be closed this weekend, starting at 7 a.m. on Saturday, August 15.

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A Formula For Beach Tragedy

The National Capital Commission will keep its beaches open until Labour Day.

The City of Ottawa will close its beaches (not have lifeguards on duty) on Saturday.

No one remembers the NCC being flush with cash but it’s beaches are open longer.

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Expect Delays Around Canal

This is a release from the National Capital Commission:

Rideau Canal Eastern Pathway users and motorists on Colonel By Drive, between Rosedale and Leonard avenues, can expect delays from August 12 to August 21, 9 am to 3 pm, due to grading work taking place on adjacent land.

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City Arrogance Results In No Ridership Studies

light rail

An artist’s conception of an Ottawa light-rail station.

If you think the mistakes made on the Orgaworld contract, the delays and errors at the Vimy Memorial Bridge, the mistakes made at the Airport Parkway Pedestrian Bridge and the problems at the Hurdman bridge were a big deal, well you haven’t seen anything yet.

Those mistakes were measured in MILLIONS  of dollars. Mistakes on the first two phases of the Ottawa light-rail project are measured in BILLIONS of dollars … $5.1 billion in fact for the two phases of the plan.

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$5.1 Billion LRT Project Has No Ridership Studies

light rail train

The City of Ottawa was unable to produce ridership studies for Phase 1 and Phase 2 of the $5.1-billion light-rail project last week.

© Copyright The Bulldog

The City of Ottawa does not have ridership studies for Phase 1 or Phase 2 of Ottawa’s $5.1-billion transit system.

Such studies are basic building blocks for creating a successful transit system. The studies examine in detail factors that determine if a new system is necessary, where it should go and what are the chances of it succeeding.

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Apologize To Activist Cabbies



Mayor Jim Watson described city taxi drivers as looking like “thugs” and “bullies” when they took a ride in an Uber cab,  recorded the experience on video and posted it on YouTube.

While the cabbies would not be confused with the white-wine-sipping guests to the various events Watson attends, they certainly didn’t look like thugs … nor did they act like thugs. They asked questions of the Uber driver when they took the opposition cab and the driver gave them very fulsome answers. The cabbies were very well-behaved.

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Get Development Height Right

sparks street

Ah yes, Sparks Street. How do you keep the crowds away?



What’s wrong with Sparks Street? Ain’t no people.

Oh sure, at lunch time there’s folks standing around … eatin’.

And sometimes they have one of those festivals that brings in people all the way from Blackburn Hamlet. Yessirree.

But it’s pretty much unanimous that Sparks Street needs people living around it to buy things and create opportunities for new businesses that will add life to a street with spectacular potential.

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Watson Says Taxi Drivers Look Like ‘Thugs’ (Video)



Mayor Jim Watson says the video below makes taxi drivers look like “thugs” in their battle with Uber drivers.

“It does not help the situation when this sort of gang, posse is going around and secretly videotaping people and their cars,” the mayor said. “It makes them look like they’re thugs or engaged in vigilante activity, which I think harms them …”

So what do you think? Do the taxi drivers look like thugs or are they trying to defend their way of making a living?

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Lansdowne Splash Pad Another City Screw-up

ottawa city hall

The difficulties with the splash pad at Lansdowne is just another City of Ottawa problem. They are becoming all too common.

Nothing says welcome like a children’s splash pad with security guards and signs that say stay off the art work … which is in the splash pad at Lansdowne Park.

This looks like a combination of extravagance (the two installations of Vancouverite Jill Anholt’s work at Lansdowne cost $4 million), incompetence (why put a sculpture which might have safety concerns in the middle of a splash pad) and bad planning (see the two previous points).

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