• Mayor’s City Builder Award – retired Major Bill Berry

    August 28, 2013 – Mayor Jim Watson and Ward Councillor Eli El-Chantiry, today presented the Mayor’s City Builder Award to retired Major Bill Berry for his outstanding commitment serving with the Canadian Army and for his tireless community service and public advocacy.

    Major Berry began his military career at the age of 16, and served as a gunner in the 181st Light Anti-Aircraft Battery (Canadian Army Reserve) while attending Kemptville Agricultural College.

    His extensive military accomplishments include, but not limited to; serving 13 months in combat in Korea with the Princess Patricia Canadian Light Infantry for which he was awarded the US Presidential Citation, a Communication Technician (RCAF), Operations Officer (St. Hubert), Base Telecommunications Officer (CFB Montreal) and Commanding Officer 702 Communications Squadron (Petawawa).

    Actively involved in his community, Major Berry is a founding member of the March Historical Society and the Pinhey’s Point Foundation, served nine years as Chairman on the Kanata Committee of Adjustment, and two years as an Alderman for the City of Kanata where he negotiated the establishment of the Kanata Legion where he served as Secretary, Sergeant-at-Arms, Parade Commander, and Chairman for the Poppy and Remembrance Committee.

    At age 83, Major Berry continues to ride his motorcycle with the Army Veterans Motorcycle Unit, operates two vehicles as a subcontractor for special needs transportation, and has developed a solar-electric establishment that feeds into the power grid under the Micro-Fit Program.

  • City of Ottawa first to receive gold-level Bicycle Friendly Community Award

    Ottawa – Today the City of Ottawa had the honour of being the first city in the province to receive the gold-level Bicycle Friendly Community Award by Share the Road Cycling Coalition, a cycling advocacy organization that works with Ontario municipalities to make their communities more bicycle-friendly. The award was presented to Mayor Jim Watson at the Annual Association of Municipalities Ontario conference.

    “The City of Ottawa and my Council colleagues are delighted to receive this distinction,” said Mayor Jim Watson. “I’m proud of the progress we are making and excited about the additional plans we have underway to become an even more bicycle-friendly city.”

    Ottawa ranked high in all five evaluation categories – engineering, education, encouragement, enforcement and evaluation and planning. The gold-level recognition reinforces the fact that Ottawa is moving in the right direction with its bicycle-friendly policies and initiatives.

    Ottawa has achieved several bicycle-friendly accomplishments to date, including over 10,000 bike parking spaces, over 1,500 ring-and-post racks, 50 per cent of city busses equipped with rack-and-roll mechanisms, and approximately 350 km of bike lanes and paved shoulders. As well, the City of Ottawa has over 70km of additional bike lanes and various other improvements planned for the coming years, including:

    Main Street cycle track

    Hampton Park Pathway/Bikeway

    Sawmill Creek Pathway – Phase 2

    Churchill Avenue cycle track

    East-West Bikeway

    Hartwell Locks Bicycle Channel

    “Ottawa’s bike culture is vibrant and growing and it’s vital that we at the City respond with the support and infrastructure to further encourage its growth and evolution,” said Keith Egli, Chair of Ottawa’s Transportation Committee. “An investment in cycling is an investment in the future health of our city.”

    Ottawa is also well attuned to the role of cycling in urban planning and sustainability. According to Peter Hume, Chair of the Planning Committee, “Cycling is here to stay. It’s part of our urban fabric and plays an essential role in strengthening our public health and environment. Any planning or development that doesn’t take cycling into consideration on some level is simply not building with the future in mind.”

    For more information on Ottawa’s cycling initiatives, visit ottawa.ca