Learn About the Issue
Since the Macdonald-Cartier bridge was constructed in 1967, King Edward Avenue, Rideau, Waller, and Nicholas streets (KERWN) have become a major interprovincial truck route. This has had significant negative impacts along this corridor and on the adjacent communities.
The continued existence of a high volume of transport trucks on our roadways continues to pose a danger to all those who work, live, and play in Sandy Hill and Lower Town. Over the past five decades, multiple different attempts at solving the problem have been tried but all have yielded nothing in the way of results.
ASH’s Position (adopted Nov 2021)
Action Sandy Hill considers the impacts of interprovincial trucks along the King Edward /Rideau/Waller/Nicholas (KERWN) corridor to be one of the most serious unresolved transportation issues in the City of Ottawa. ASH continues to work actively with counterparts from Lowertown Community Association in meeting with elected representatives at all three levels of government to lobby for action towards resolving this problem.
Our focus is on ensuring that the downtown interprovincial truck problem is given primary consideration in future planning decisions related to interprovincial transportation and that it not be relegated to second place behind the intention to build more capacity for car traffic across the Ottawa River.
Our position is that the lack of adequate interconnection between the freeway systems in Ontario (417) and Quebec (5/50) that has led to the region’s interprovincial transportation problems is a more urgent issue than that of building more crossings. Consistent with this position is our view that a downtown tunnel to the Macdonald-Cartier bridge must receive serious consideration as part of any contemplated changes to the interprovincial transportation system in the NCR.
Furthermore, while planning authorities continue to deliberate the when/what of future infrastructure decisions, we call for action now on mitigating the impacts of interprovincial through trucks on the 6000 residents and thousands more visitors who live, work, and play along this corridor. The safety, health, and quality of life impacts of this truck traffic cannot be left unaddressed any longer. The current NCC plan anticipates that more actions will be required beyond building new infrastructure and given that is the case, work must begin now on implementing such actions.
See our Nov 2021 statement: Downtown trucks – ASH’s statement
The principles of 15-minute neighbourhoods are integral to the strategic directions contained in Ottawa’s Official Plan. What is a 15-minute neighbourhood? 15-minute neighbourhoods are compact, well-connected with a clustering of a diverse mix of land-uses; this includes a range of housing types, shops, services, local access to food, schools and day care facilities, employment, greenspaces, parks, and pathways. They are complete communities that support active transportation (walking, cycling) and transit, reduce car dependency, and enable people to live car-light or car free.
The 15-minute neighbourhoods offer: (1) access to available services and amenities and (2) safety and enjoyability of the pedestrian environment with respect to walking or cycling to these services and amenities.
Solving the longstanding problems associated with the KERWN corridor in our neighbourhood is a necessary first step at improving the safety and enjoyability of the pedestrian and active transportation environment in Sandy Hill.
Help us urge the decision-makers at all three levels of government to take immediate action to solve this historic truck problem by exploring all practical solutions, including a tunnel, and so that we can ensure that Sandy Hill remains a truly safe and walkable neighbourhood.
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