City Hall briefs: Term of Council priorities set, OP policy directions and road safety action plan

CITY HALL – The City of Ottawa budget wasn’t the only thing on the docket during a busy council meeting yesterday (Dec. 11).

Council approved the Term of Council priorities for 2019 to 2022, a “set of goals that emphasize growing and diversifying the economy, building an integrated transportation network, supporting communities and protecting the environment,” city staff released in a statement.

Council approved the preliminary policy directions that will be the basis for the new Official Plan.

“The new Official Plan will ensure Ottawa continues to adapt to current and emerging needs, opportunities and challenges,” city staff said.

A draft of the plan, to be tabled in October 2020, will rely on new growth projections. By 2046, Ottawa’s population is expected to grow to 1.4 million, an increase of 40 per cent from 2018, or 402,000 additional residents.

Council approved the Strategic Road Safety Action Plan, which aims to reduce the annual rate of fatal and major injury collisions by 20 per cent by 2024. With total investments of $31.5 million in 2020, the plan will focus on improving road safety culture, supporting vulnerable road users, enhancing safety in rural areas and at intersections, and changing high-risk driver behaviour.

Council approved Official Plan and zoning amendments for a large distribution warehouse in North Gower, just off Highway 416 at 1966 Roger Stevens Dr. While no tenant has been confirmed for the site, the proposed 65,000-square-metre warehouse could employ up to 1,700 people.

Council approved a new Barrhaven Downtown Secondary Plan, with a goal of stimulating development that would ultimately result in more than 10,000 jobs within the town centre. The town centre will serve as a commercial district for the surrounding residential neighborhoods in Barrhaven. Large retail stores will anchor the area, while Market Place Avenue will have smaller storefronts with a main street character.

Council received the auditor general’s annual report, including seven detailed audit reports, and approved his work plan for 2020.