Monday, February 24, 2014

8 Love Locks' Flat

Both the Ottawa Citizen and the Centretown Buzz did stories about the love locks on the Corktown Footbridge in advance of Valentine's Day. Come to think of it, so did I.

What I didn't post was this photo from the same day, showing a chain of "love locks" (I suspect this set is just regular locks...), with the canal-side pavilion "8 Locks' Flat" in the background:

I have a lot of photos of the canal and of the footbridge, as you can imagine considering the Pedbridge blog I used to document the bridge's construction in great detail, and considering I was on the naming committee for the bridge!

[Look for more one-photo posts under the label Singles]

Thursday, February 13, 2014

3D Thursday: Bicycles and icicles

This past weekend, Citizens for Safe Cycling's third annual Family Winter Bike Parade ended at 8 Locks' Flat, where a number of bike racks were laid out for us on the patio, which we diligently filled. A number of cyclists had already left by the time I took this photo:

Source photos for the 3D image: Left, Right

Mike from the Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project posted a Vimeo video of the ride.

As I left 8 Locks' Flat, I noticed some people had hung some posters from the Corktown Footbridge. If you zoom in, you can make out the words "Marry Me Tia". Awww... (I didn't get a 3D photo of it)

I then headed to the Winterlude festivities in Confederation Park to check out the ice sculptures. As with previous years, there were plenty of military themes, in particular commemoration the start of World War I. This life-sized sculpture depicts women waving off their soldier husbands or boyfriends heading off to war by train.

Source photos for the 3D image: Left, Right

Another angle:

Source photos for the 3D image: Left, Right

Here's the official description of the sculpture, entitled "100 Years Later – The Beginning of the First World War"

This sculpture is presented by Veterans Affairs Canada, and Winterlude is for the first year being presented by the department of Canadian Heritage, as indicated by the banner at the bottom of the placard. (The NCC still maintains the Rideau Canal Skateway.)

The 36th edition of the three-weekend-long Winterlude festival continues in its final weekend this Saturday through Monday (Family Day) along the Rideau Canal, in Jacques Cartier Park, and at various venues elsewhere.

The skateway will remain open after Winterlude for as long as conditions permit. See current conditions on the official NCC Ice Conditions website or on this unofficial website which is more mobile-friendly.

[Tune in on Thursdays at noon for a new 3D image. View the 3D label for other posts with 3D images. 3D FAQ]

Monday, February 10, 2014

Snow removal on Bank Street (video)

On the left, the snow accumulation on Bank Street's west sidewalk from the previous snowfall. On the right, the mostly-bare road and sidewalk minutes after the City took the same snowbanks away from the east side of Bank Street last night:

I described the process in more detail in my 2012 post, "Snow removal on Kent." In summary, some very deft sidewalk plow operators push the snow from around various obstacles on the sidewalk into the road. Then graders like this one go by to arrange this snow into a straight row on the roadway:

Then, of course, the big snow blower machine comes by to whisk the snow (and ice!) all away with ease, while a lineup of trucks follow in wait of their turn to collect the snow from the blower:

I took a video of the blower going by. Watch it in stunning HD:

As described at a briefing last week at the City's Transportation Committee, snow removal (that is, physically removing it from the road and taking it someplace else, as opposed to snow clearing, which is just pushing it aside) makes up the biggest part of the City's winter maintenance budget. Of the $11.8M spent to clean up after the December 20 storm, most ($7.2M) was spent on snow removal. By contrast, $873,000 was spent on sidewalk clearing during and after that storm, which amounts to about a dollar per person for that one storm.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Peds on Weds: Part 4: A history of sidewalk design in Ottawa

Today for the fourth and final entry of the sidewalk-design series, I'm going to give a history of sidewalk design, starting at the establishment of the original City of Ottawa, in 1855 (and earlier!). In part 2 of this series, I already gave a "little history" of the Toronto-style sidewalk design, relating specifically to how they became standard back to the establishment of the current amalgamated City of Ottawa in 2001. This followed part 1, in which I described "Toronto-style" sidewalks and the problems they're meant to address, and part 3, in which I discussed some of the issues the Toronto-style sidewalk itself has faced.

Today's entry starts with the West Ward Market, built in 1848 by Nicholas Sparks. This was used as Ottawa's first City Hall, roughly where the NAC is today.


The first municipally-built sidewalks in Ottawa actually predate the City of Ottawa's 1855 incorporation: by-law number 37 of the Town of Bytown, approved the 23rd of September, 1850, was "To authorize the expenditure of £75 in making a Plank Sidewalk, S. side York Street":

Monday, February 3, 2014

Flashy bike

Near the end of December as the Rideau Canal skateway was agonizingly close to opening, I went on a Bike Ride along the canal one night to take some photos of the canal. With my bike resting on one side of the Bank Street bridge, I took a picture of it. Realizing I'd accidentally got it when the flashing purple lights were off, I took another. At the suggestion of a friend, I made it into an animated gif, and it works pretty well!

[Look for more one-photo posts under the label Singles]