Champlain Park – Parkland Expansion project – moving forward

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November 20, 2016  Jeff Leiper -Kitchissippi Ward Newsletter #72


Moving forward with next steps on potential Pontiac closure



Over the past couple of months, we’ve heard a lot of feedback on whether to press ahead with a proposal I originally heard from community members to close a portion of Pontiac in order to join Champlain Park with the NCC property to the north. That idea captured my and others’ imagination, and we’ve had a rich consultation on it.

As we go into the Champlain Park Community Association annual general meeting next week, I’m preparing to let folks know I’ve decided to proceed with next steps toward achieving that. There’s no guarantee we can accomplish it, but I’ve had enough discussions with the City to be confident that the plan is achievable.

Clearly, it would have pros and cons. Our consultation has raised a number of separate but notionally-related issues on which we’ll also have to work. But, I’ve heard the overwhelming support, counted the traffic, listened to the concerns, and am feeling very comfortable that this step would be to the overall benefit of the quality of life year-round in Champlain Park. Read more here.

Champlain Park Community Association AGM

The Champlain Park Community Association is holding its AGM on Tuesday, November 22 in the field house at 149 Cowley Avenue. I’ll be on hand to provide an update about potential next steps for the Pontiac closure.

How we got here!

22-Nov-2016 CPCA – AGM Meeting Jeff Leiper to provide update
20-Nov-2016 Jeff Leiper -Kitchissippi Ward Newsletter #72
21-Oct-2016 Update: Champlain Park – Park Land Expansion Proposal
01-Oct-2016 Jeff Leiper – Kitchissippi Ward Newsletter #65
27-Sept-2016 Friendly Reminder: Park Expansion Opportunity, We need your support!
25-Sept-2016 Jeff Leiper – Kitchissippi Ward Newsletter #64
20-Sept-2016 Park Expansion Opportunity, We need your support!
28-April-2016 The Park Extension was first proposed to Jeff by Carol Arnason on behalf of Adrian Bradley, who was unable to attend this meeting with Jeff. Adrian later met with Jeff at one of his pop-up meetings held at the Van Lang Fieldhouse to follow up on the status of this proposal. Where Jeff indicated he was looking into it, and would be setting up meeting with community to discuss further.

Traffic Counts along Pontiac

Traffic counts September 22 and 23, 2016 (snippet source: from Jeff’s Newsletter #65)

I want to understand the traffic implications better, so did some quick counts on Thursday and Friday.

On Friday, I was out from 3:15-5:05 and counted on Pontiac in the stretch we’re floating closing:

  • 15 cars westbound that came from Northwestern
  • 4 cars westbound that came from Carleton
  • 17 cars eastbound from Cowley. My impression is that these were almost all Tunney’s parkers.
  • 17 cars eastbound from Keyworth, including 7 that had a child visible in the car (my assumption is that these are pick-ups from the school), and 3 buses
  • 10 cars eastbound from Patricia, including 6 that had a child visible in the car (again, I’m making an assumption of pick-ups)
  • 2 bikes eastbound, and 15 bikes westbound
  • 14 pedestrians eastbound, and 25 pedestrians westbound. As you might imagine, a very large number of these westbound pedestrians looked like they were headed to their car from Tunney’s Pasture.

As an observation, the school rush lasts for about 10 minutes immediately after the bell. Traffic is extremely light outside of that period.

On Thursday morning, I did a count from 7:30 to 9:15 am.

On Pontiac westbound I observed:

  • From Northwestern: 9 vehicles, of which 8 had kids visible
  • From Carleton: 14 vehicles, of which 10 had kids visible and one bus
  • 4 bikes
  • 10 pedestrians

On Pontiac eastbound I observed:

  • One vehicle – a resident of the Keyworth/Cowley block
  • One vehicle from Cowley
  • 12 vehicles from Keyworth, of which 4 were buses
  • 7 vehicles from Patricia, of which 1 was a bus
  • 33 bikes
  • 6 pedestrians