The City of Ottawa has initiated a study to develop a Recommended Functional Design Plan for Bank Street from the Riverside Drive North to Ledbury Avenue. The Plan will include preliminary roadway geometry and general arrangements, typical cross sections, pavement markings, intersection details, preliminary landscape designs, and identify property requirements and project costs.
From Library and Archives Canada, a couple of older photos of the Bank Street Bridge, the north gateway in Old Ottawa South.
Old Ottawa South Community Association (OSCA)
Traffic and Safety Committee
Presentation to City of Ottawa Transportation Committee
April 20, 2015
Let me begin by saying that the Old Ottawa South Community Association (OSCA) appreciates the opportunity to be a part of the Lansdowne Management Operations Committee (LTMOC). We have found it beneficial to community interests to work with LTMOC and City traffic specialists in a consistent and continuous manner.
Location of OOS
The Rideau Canal separates Old Ottawa South (OOS) from Lansdowne but OOS is as close to Lansdowne on the south side as Holmwood Avenue is on the north side. Our buffer is the Canal. Sunnyside Avenue, the second intersection south of the canal, is one of the main arterial routes used to transport patrons from Carleton University to Bank and a direct link between Bronson and Bank. Large event parking requirements and restrictions together with extra bus shuttle services have a direct impact on our local businesses and residents. As the retail side of Lansdowne gains in momentum, however, OOS is primarily concerned with day-to-day pedestrian and cycling safety.
Some notable results of our work with our Councilor David Chernushenko, City officials and LTMOC include: an advanced pedestrian signal at Bank & Sunnyside, a “dazzle” of zebra stripes at intersections from Aylmer to Riverdale on Bank, and a new system of sharrows for cyclists travelling on the Bank Street Bridge.
Some problem areas, however, continue to be a “drag” on our moving forward:
- Of particular concern is the Bank Street Bridge. We support the latest proposed safety measures for cyclists and will continue to press for future improvements.
- Pedestrian safety at Aylmer & Bank, the first intersection directly south of Lansdowne is a serious concern as are the walking routes for school children and after-four programs at peak traffic periods along Sunnyside Avenue, east and west of Bank.
- The automatic east-west pedestrian signal agreed to by City officials in early March from Glebe Avenue to Riverdale (at Billings Bridge) has not been implemented. To date no alternative has been proposed between Aylmer & Riverdale.
In response to a complaint from the OSCA Traffic and Safety Committee about ongoing illegal left turns at Echo Drive north on to Bank Street, a new temporary sign has been installed on Echo Drive. As well, a police car has been stationed at the intersection during targeted peak periods. Thanks to City officials and the Ottawa Police for their assistance in discouraging this dangerous practice of illegal left turns.
You may have noticed a new set of zebra stripes at the intersection of Bank and Aylmer!
This traffic calming and pedestrian safety measure is the result of consultations with the City and OSCA’S Traffic and Safety Committee. It is one of the many recommendations resulting from our Traffic Survey of 2013.
Recent articles have drawn attention to the unattractive trees and gardens on Bank Street in Old Ottawa South and have raised the question — whose job is it to remedy this situation?
The Old Ottawa South Traffic and Safety Committee, chaired by Winnie Pietrykowski, has also asked that question. The Traffic Committee, in addition to following up on the OOS Traffic Survey with the City officials and sitting on the Lansdowne Traffic Monitoring Operations Committee (LTMOC) has acted on the notion that greener streets can play a role in encouraging more respectful and safe driving by those passing through our community. In this regard, a member of the Traffic Committee has become engaged with the Sunnyside Avenue Traffic Calming and Green Streets Project.
Lower speed limit and signage to make bridge crossings more comfortable for cyclists, motorists, and pedestrians
The way cyclists and motorists have been expected to share the road over the Bank Street Bridge, with its constrained lane widths, is unacceptable.
During peak periods, cyclists feel squeezed; when traffic volume is less, they are unnerved by the excessive speed of many vehicles passing mere centimetres from their shoulders. With the temporary lane reduction during Lansdowne construction, northbound motorists are currently not supposed to pass cyclists on the bridge, yet many do. This situation is made worse by the fact that the northbound curbside lane over the Bank Street Bridge is currently closed due to construction on the east side of Bank Street.
There have been two recent public meetings on traffic: one November 27, 2013, in Old Ottawa South and the other December 9, 2013, in the Glebe. The November meeting covered the results of the 2013 Riverdale and Area Traffic Study, while the December meeting focused on the Lansdowne Transportation Monitoring Plan, a key outcome of the Lansdowne Transportation Advisory Committee (LTAC).